Mentor Speak Series - India | William - Master of Data Science

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Prodigy Finance - June, 18 2024

4 min read

About the author

At Prodigy Finance, we're committed to helping international talent to achieve their education dreams. We offer international student loans to qualified individuals attending top master's programmes in the US.

This is from William Babu Bonasi. Our mentor is from India and is studying in Australia.

  • **School: **Monash University - Faculty of Information Technology
  • Course: Master of Data Science

1. Hi, William! What motivated you to share your study abroad experience?

I am absolutely thrilled to be invited to contribute to your new blog series. Studying abroad was a truly transformative experience for me, and I am happy to help others achieve their dreams of international education. As someone who has personally experienced the journey, I feel a strong sense of responsibility to pay it forward.

2. How did you prepare for the IELTS (entrance exam)?

Preparing for the IELTS exam was a crucial step in my journey to study abroad. I familiarised myself with the format of the IELTS exam, including its different sections (Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking) and the types of questions in each section. I started learning through YouTube videos. I felt like I needed more guidance, so I enrolled in an institute called Superscores in Hyderabad. They provided recorded sessions and mock tests, which were incredibly helpful. I spent a significant amount of time practising with this study material. It helped me become more comfortable with the timing and format of the exam.

As I practised and took mock tests, I found myself lacking in the essay writing section. Consequently, I dedicated more time to strengthening my essay-writing skills. I paid special attention to grammar rules and practised writing essays, reports, and letters to improve my writing skills and coherence in expressing ideas. Throughout this time, I focused on expanding my vocabulary and listening skills by reading extensively and listening to English podcasts and news. I also practised speaking English with friends and tutors from the academy. This significantly boosted my confidence before taking the actual exam.

3. What was your experience with Prodigy Finance?

I am incredibly grateful to Prodigy Finance for providing me with the opportunity to study abroad, even though I come from a middle-class background. I especially appreciate the Prodigy Finance team's prompt and valuable responses to all my inquiries. I was very happy with their assistance, timely communication, and the smooth loan and disbursement process.

The mentorship and guidance I have received from Prodigy Finance during my application process made the whole thing feel so easy. That’s the reason I volunteered to become a mentor myself. I want to help others realise their dream of studying abroad.

4. What advice would you give to study abroad aspirants?

My biggest advice would be to clearly define your goals for studying abroad and then do your research. There are many amazing study-abroad destinations, but the perfect fit will depend on your goals, personal preferences, and budget. Here’s what I want the study abroad aspirants to know:

  • Start early: The whole process has many considerations, from researching universities and programs to understanding visa requirements and financial options. Early planning can help you avoid any last-minute stress.

  • Define your goals: Have a clear vision of what you hope to gain from the experience. What field do you want to specialise in? What excites you most about studying internationally? Research universities that offer strong programs in your area of interest and have a good reputation for international students.

  • Prepare financially: Studying abroad can be expensive. Factor in tuition fees, living expenses, and travel costs. Explore scholarships, grants, and education loan options like Prodigy Finance, which cater to international students. Don't be discouraged by financial hurdles – with proper planning, you can make it work.

  • Build your network: Make an effort to connect with your fellow students, professors, and university staff members and get involved in campus clubs or events. The people you meet could become your study buddies or even your future colleagues. The more people you meet, the more you will get out of the whole experience.

5. Can you share a memorable experience from your time abroad?

The cultural difference was the most memorable bit, apart from the academics, of course. Coming from an Eastern culture, I was used to more indirect communication. It involves formality and reading between the lines. While in Australia, people are more direct in expressing their opinions. It is the same attitude they have towards friendships and while socialising. They are more open to meeting new people and making friends, even with strangers.

While the cultural differences were significant at times, embracing them and learning about the Australian way of life was a rewarding part of my study abroad experience. It pushed me out of my comfort zone and allowed me to grow both academically and personally.

6. How do you think employers value international study experience?

Having an international degree on your resume could be the difference between getting offered an interview or not. In my opinion, it demonstrates your interest in acquiring global skills and opening your eyes to different ways of life. The transferrable skills acquired during international experiences, like communication and problem-solving, are highly valued by employers.

However, simply having the international study experience listed on your resume is not enough. Employers want to see how you have grown as an individual with your experiences abroad. You should be able to communicate it strongly during the interview process.

Prodigy Finance Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the United Kingdom. Prodigy Finance loans are offered to eligible borrowers and these loans are governed by English law.

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