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Life at UWC 

Each UWC experience is unique and shaped by your personality, background, college, friends, and career aspirations. Supported by an active and engaged student community, nurturing teachers and staff, and an environment that catalyses your ability to grow as an informed and responsible global citizen, your life at UWC will be filled with intense friendships, critical thought and passion -- all which extends beyond graduation. UWC becomes a part of you. 

To get a glimpse of what UWC life is like, below are blog entries from our current scholars and alumni. We asked them to reflect on their experiences at UWC, with or without specific questions, some when they have just started their UWC journey, and some when they have already graduated from UWC. 


Theng Lucklita, Phnom Penh
UWC ISAK Japan, 2016-2018

សំណួរ​ទី ១៖

តើអ្នករំពឹងទុកយ៉ាងដូចម្តេចខ្លះចំពោះ UWC និង ខ្លួនអ្នកផ្ទាល់ មុនពេលអ្នកទៅដល់សាលា UWC ប្រសិនបើអ្នកអាច រំលឹកឡើងវិញ?

Question 1: 

What were your expectations about UWC and yourself before you went to UWC if you could recall any?

ខ្ញុំចង់បាននូវការចេះប្រឈមមុខនឹងបញ្ហា។ ខ្ញុំចង់រៀននូវអ្វីដែលលើសពីការគ្រាន់តែសិក្សា។ ខ្ញុំចង់រៀននូវរឿងជាច្រើន។

​​​​​​​I wanted a challenge, I wanted to study something more than just my academics. I wanted to learn many things. ​​​​​​​

សំណួរទី ២៖

តើអ្នករៀនបានអ្វីខ្លះពី UWC និង ពីខ្លួនឯង បន្ទាប់ពីចាកចេញពី UWC?

Question 2:

What did you learn about UWC and yourself after you left UWC?

​​​​​​​មានមនុស្សច្រើនណាស់ដែលប្រាប់ខ្ញុំថា ពេលខ្លះ UWC ធ្វើអោយយើងមានអារម្មណ៍ហាក់បីដូចជា រស់នៅក្នុងរង្វង់មួយ។ ខ្ញុំក៏ចាប់ផ្តើមយល់ថា វាជាការពិត ក៏ប៉ុន្តែ UWC អត់ចាំបាច់ “ត្រូវតែ” ជារង្វង់មួយឡើយ។ ខ្ញុំមានអារម្មណ៍ថា វាជាកន្លែងមួយដែល យើងអាចធ្វើនូវរឿងតាមរបៀបផ្សេង ហើយប្រសិនបើវាត្រឹមជារង្វង់មួយ នោះវាក៏អាចបង្កប់ន័យឲ្យយើងដឹងថា បើសិនវាជារបស់ ផុយស្រួយ នោះវាមិនស្ថិតនៅយូរអង្វែងនោះឡើយ។ ខ្ញុំគិតថា វាជាកម្មវិធីពន្លឿន ដែលអាចឲ្យមនុស្សឈានទៅរកការប្រឈមមុខ ធ្វើជាខ្លួនឯង និងស្វែងរកថាពួកគាត់នឹងក្លាយជាអ្វីក្នុងពិភពលោក។ ខ្ញូំមានអារម្មណ៍ រឹងមាំ និង មិនងាយចុះចាញ់បន្ទាប់ពី UWC។ ខ្ញុំមានអារម្មណ៍ថា ខ្ញុំទទួលបានបទពិសោធន៍ជាច្រើន ក្នុងស្ថានភាពគ្រប់ប្រភេទ ដែលជំរុញឲ្យខ្ញុំធ្វើល្អបានច្រើន និង អាចជួយមនុស្ស ជុំវិញខ្លួន ដើម្បីបន្តជួយមនុស្សជាច្រើនផ្សេងទៀត។ ពេលខ្លះវាពិបាកទាំងផ្លូវចិត្ត ជាពិសេសជាមួយនឹងអម្រែកការសិក្សា និង ការងារក្រៅការសិក្សា ប៉ុន្តែវាពិតជាសាកសមនឹងតម្លៃការលះបង់ខ្លាំងណាស់។ ​​​​​​​

A lot of people tell me UWC feels like a bubble sometimes, I realized that yeah sure, that’s true but also, UWC doesn’t “need” to be a bubble, I feel like it’s more of a space where things are done differently, and if that’s a bubble, then it gives the connotation that it’s something fragile and wouldn’t last, I like to think of it as an accelerator program, where people can go and be challenged, be themselves, discover who they want to be for this world. I feel strong and resilient after leaving UWC. I feel like I’ve experienced many feelings and situations in such a way that inspires me to do good in this world and that I can help people around me so, this space can grow to accommodate more people. It is hard, mentally of course sometimes with the strains of academics, and outside of academics life, but it is worth it. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

សំណួរទី ៣៖

តើបទពិសោធន៍នៅUWC របស់អ្នកបានជួយអ្វីខ្លះដល់អ្នកដើម្បីតម្រង់ទិសនៃដំណើរបន្ទាប់របស់អ្នក?

Question 3:

How did your UWC experience help you navigate your next journey?

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ចម្លើយដែលស្រដៀងគ្នាទៅសំណួរមុន។​ ប្រធានបទនៃចំណាប់អារម្មណ៍ដែលខ្ញុំបានជ្រើសយកពី UWC មានដូចជា៖ ភាពជាសហគ្រិន ការលើកកម្ពស់ស្រ្តី សម្ពាតសង្គម និង សុខភាពផ្លូវចិត្ត។

Similar answer to previous question, and topics of interest that I picked up from my UWC were : Entrepreneurship, woman empowerment, social pressure, and mental health.


Chham Kimheang, Banteay Meanchey
UWCSEA, 2011-2016

សំណួរ​ទី ១៖

តើអ្នករំពឹងទុកយ៉ាងដូចម្តេចខ្លះចំពោះ UWC និង ខ្លួនអ្នកផ្ទាល់ មុនពេលអ្នកទៅដល់សាលា UWC ប្រសិនបើអ្នកអាច រំលឹកឡើងវិញ?

Question 1: 

What were your expectations about UWC and yourself before you went to UWC if you could recall any?

ខ្ញុំមានអាយុ ១៣ ឆ្នាំ នៅពេលដែលខ្ញុំទទួលបានអាហារូបករណ៍ UWC ទៅសិក្សានៅប្រទេស សិង្ហបុរី។ អ្វីដែលខ្ញុំចាំជាងគេនោះគឺ ខ្ញុំពិតជាមានអារម្មណ៍រំភើប។ ខ្ញុំមិនដឹងថាអ្វីៗនឹងមានរូបរាងយ៉ាងដូចម្តេចទេនៅក្នុងពិភពថ្មីមួយនេះ ប៉ុន្តែខ្ញុំពិតជារំភើបនឹងឃើញអ្វីៗ ដែលថ្មី ជួបមនុស្សថ្មីមកពីប្រទេសផ្សេងៗ ក៏ដូចជាធ្វើដំណើរទៅប្រទេសថ្មីៗ។ ខ្ញុំរំពឹងថានឹងបានបន្តការសិក្សានៅសហរដ្ឋអាមេរិច បន្ទាប់ពីរៀនចប់នៅ UWC ដូចរៀមច្បងមុនៗដែលខ្ញុំបានជួប។ សំរាប់ខ្ញុំ ខ្ញុំចង់ឲ្យខ្លួនឯងប្រសើរជាងមុន និងឆ្លាតជាងមុន។ ខ្ញុំចង់មានការផ្លាស់ប្តូរ និង លូតលាស់ ក្នុងអត្ថន័យណាមួយដែលសមស្របនឹង លក្ខខណ្ឌ័ជាមនុស្សល្អ និងសិស្សល្អ ក្នុងសាលាថ្មីរបស់ ខ្ញុំនេះ។ 

I was thirteen years old when I received the UWC scholarship to study in Singapore. What I can remember is I was excited. I didn’t know how everything would look like in this new world but I was excited to see new things, meet new people from other countries, and travel to new countries. I expected to continue high education in the US after UWC as that was the trend for older UWC students that I met. As for myself, I wanted to be a better, smarter version of myself. I was willing to change and grow, whatever it may meant in order to be a great person and student in this new school. 

សំណួរទី ២៖

តើអ្នករៀនបានអ្វីខ្លះពី UWC និង ពីខ្លួនឯង បន្ទាប់ពីចាកចេញពី UWC?

Question 2:

What did you learn about UWC and yourself after you left UWC?

UWC គឺជាកន្លែងមួយដែលផ្សព្វផ្សាយនិងគាំទ្រភាពស្មើគ្នា ​សន្តិភាព​ ភាពចម្រុះ និងការចង់ដឹងចង់ឃើញរបស់ពិភពលោក ដែលខ្ញុំចង់បន្តនាំយកតម្លៃទាំងនេះទៅកន្លែងផ្សេងៗ។ និយាយបែបនេះមិនមែនបានន័យថា ខ្ញុំគិតថាអ្វីៗនៅ UWC សុទ្ធតែល្អឥតខ្ចោះនោះទេ។ នៅពេលថ្មីៗនេះ ខ្ញុំបានគិតឆ្លុះបញ្ចាំងអំពី រយះពេលដែលខ្ញុំកំពុងរស់នៅទីនេះ ហើយភ្ញាក់ខ្លួនថា ខ្ញុំកំពុងរស់នៅ និង សិក្សាក្នុងស្ថាប័នលំដាប់កំពូល ដែលមានកិត្យានុភាព និងកិត្តនាមដ៏ល្បីល្បាញ។ UWC ចូលរួមលើកតំកើងភាពចម្រុះពូជសាសន៍ ប៉ុន្តែក៏នៅតែស្ថិតក្នុងរបទជនជាតិស្បែកស។ ដូច្នេះ វាមានភាពងាយស្រួលក្នុងការទទួលឥទ្ធិពលពីជនជាតិស្បែកស។ ទោះជាយ៉ាងណាក៏ដោយ UWC សម្បូរទៅដោយឱកាសជាច្រើន។ ម្នាក់ៗតែងតែព្យាយាមលើកទឹកចិត្តឲ្យគ្នាទៅវិញទៅមកដើម្បីឈោងយកសក្កានុពលជាអតិបរមា ដែលនេះបង្កើតទៅជាវប្បធម៌ មមាញឹក ខិតខំប្រឹងប្រែង គ្រប់ពេលវេលា។ បរិយាកាសនេះក៏ផ្លាស់ប្តូរខ្ញុំឲ្យក្លាយជាដូចនេះដែរ។ ខ្ញុំត្រូវបានបង្រៀនឲ្យខិតខំឲ្យកាន់តែ ខ្លាំង ដើម្បីផ្លាស់ប្តូរពិភពលោក ហើយត្រូវធ្វើទោះស្ថិតក្នុងកាលះទេសះណាក៏ដោយ។ ខ្ញុំក៏ចាប់ផ្តើមឃើញថាខ្លួនឯងពិបាកនឹងធ្វើឲ្យខ្លួន ទំនេរបន្ទាប់ពីចេញពីUWC ខ្ញុំសុំានឹងភាពមមាញឹកគ្រប់ពេលវេលាទៅហើយ។ ខ្ញុំក៏ស្គាល់ខ្លួនឯងបន្ថែម រួមទាំងពិភពលោកតាមរយះ បទពិសោធន៍ខ្លួនឯងកន្លងមក។ ខ្ញុំបានបង្កើតទំនាក់ទំនងជាមួយមនុស្សជាច្រើននៅជុំវិញពិភពលោក។ ខ្ញុំបានស្វែងយល់ថា ខ្ញុំមិន ត្រឹមតែជាពលរដ្ឋរបស់ប្រទេសតែមួយនោះទេ តែជាពលរដ្ឋនៃពិភពលោក។ វាជាអារម្មណ៍មួយដែលខ្ញុំគិតថា សំណាងខ្លាំងណាស់ តែពេលខ្លះក៏ជាអារម្មណ៍ច្របូកច្របល់មួយដែរ។ ឥលូវនេះ ខ្ញុំដឹងថាទោះជាខ្ញុំនឹងធ្វើអ្វីក៏ដោយក្នុងជីវិតរបស់ខ្ញុំ ខ្ញុំនឹងព្យាយាមលើកស្ទួយ អ្នកនៅជុំវិញខ្លួនខ្ញុំគ្រប់ទីកន្លែងដែលខ្ញុំទៅ។ និយាយម្យ៉ាងទៀតគឺ ខ្ញុំចង់ជួយសហគមន៍ជាធំ មិនមែនគ្រាន់តែខ្លួនឯងនោះទេ។ ម្យ៉ាងវិញទៀត ខ្ញុំបានយល់ពីតម្រូវការដែលត្រូវស្វែងរកវិធីសាស្រ្តធ្វើការដោយសុខភាពល្អ ជាជាងបង្ខំខ្លួនឯងឲ្យហួសកំរិតជាមួយនឹង ភាពរំពឹងទុកខ្ពស់ ដែលខ្ញុំតែងកំណត់សំរាប់ខ្លួនឯងគ្រប់ពេល។

UWC is an idealistic place that preaches equality, peace, diversity and curiosity for the world that I’d like to bring to places outside of UWC. Having said that, I don’t think that everything in UWC was perfect. Especially recently, I’ve reflected more on my time there and realised that I was living and studying in a very prestigious as well as privileged institution. UWC celebrates diversity but is very westernised. Thus, it is easy to be kind of “white-washed” there. On the other hand, UWC was full of opportunities. Everyone seems to encourage everyone to reach their full potential – which also created this busy culture to reaching and striving all the time. Thus, I’ve learned that I am a product of this place. I have been taught to strive for more, to change the world, and to do that at any cost. I find myself struggling to relax after leaving UWC, I've been so used to doing things all the time. I also know more about myself and the world through the experiences I have there. I created many good connections with people around the world. I’ve learned that I am no citizen to just one place but to the world. This is a very lucky feeling to have but also a confusing one at times. Now I know that whatever I do for the rest of my life, I’d like to try to make an impact that lifts others up with me wherever I go. In other words, I want to help the bigger community, not just myself in life. On the other hand, I’ve learned the need to find a healthy way to do that and not burn myself out with expectations that I need to keep accomplishing all the time. 

សំណួរទី ៣៖

តើបទពិសោធន៍នៅUWC របស់អ្នកបានជួយអ្វីខ្លះដល់អ្នកដើម្បីតម្រង់ទិសនៃដំណើរបន្ទាប់របស់អ្នក?

Question 3:

How did your UWC experience help you navigate your next journey?

ដោយបានឆ្លងកាត់បទពិសោធន៍ កម្មសិក្សា IB និង ការរៀនពោរពេញដោយវប្បធម៌រវាងគ្នានៅ UWC វាពិតជាបានជួយខ្ញុំច្រើន ណាស់ពេលដែលត្រូវបន្តការសិក្សាថ្នាក់មហាវិទ្យាល័យ។ ប្រសិនបើខ្ញុំចេញពីប្រទេសកម្ពុជាផ្ទាល់ ទៅរៀននៅសហរដ្ឋអាមេរិច នោះខ្ញុំប្រាកដជាមិនបានត្រៀមខ្លួនរួចរាល់ និងមានភាពភ្ញាក់ផ្អើលចំពោះវប្បធម៌ថ្មីៗ ក៏ដូចជារបៀបរស់នៅ។ ការភ្ជាប់ទំនាក់ទំនង ជាមួយមិត្ត និង គ្រូនៅ UWC ក៏ជួយសំរួលក្នុងការរស់នៅនៃបរិបទថ្មីនេះដែរ។ ដោយសារខ្ញុំបានដកឃ្លាមួយឆ្នាំក្នុងចន្លោះ UWC និង មហាវិទ្យាល័យ ហើយដោយសារខ្ញុំជាមនុស្សដែលតែងចង់ភ្ជាប់ទំនាក់ទំនងជាមួយមនុស្សផ្សេងៗគ្នា ខ្ញុំបានមកដល់មហាវិទ្យាល័យជាមួយនឹងផ្នត់គំនិតថាខ្ញុំនឹងមិននៅក្នុងរង្វង់បិទជិតមួយទេ។ ដូច្នេះ ខ្ញុំមិនត្រឹមតែរាប់អានជាមួយសិស្ស UWCផ្សេង រឺក៏សិស្សអន្តរជាតិប៉ុណ្ណោះទេ។ ខ្ញុំក៏រាប់អានមិត្តភក្តិដែលជាជនជាតិអាមេរិចផងដែរ។ ប៉ុន្តែអ្វីៗក៏មិនស្រួលរហូតនោះដែរ ពេលខ្លះវាងាយស្រួលក្នុងការបង្កើតចំណងមិត្តភាពជាមួយសិស្ស UWC ផ្សេងទៀតព្រោះពួកយើងសុទ្ធមានបទពិសោធន៍ស្រដៀង គ្នា។ ប៉ុន្តែបើយើងព្យាយាមឲ្យកាន់តែខ្លាំងបន្តិច ហើយជឿថាវាសំខាន់ណាស់ក្នុងការបំបែកចេញពីរង្វង់នេះ នោះអ្នកនឹងរកឃើញ មធ្យោបាយដើម្បីធ្វើវា។ ប្រធានបទផ្សេងៗពី UWC ពិតជាដក់ជាប់ជាមួយខ្ញុំ ដូចជា ការសាងសន្តិភាព យេនដ័រ ការផ្តល់អំណាចដល់យុវជន ពលរដ្ឋសកល និង ភាពជានិរន្តន៍។ អ្វីៗដែល ខ្ញុំចំនាយពេលវេលាជាច្រើនធ្វើ និង រៀននៅ មហាវិទ្យាល័យសព្វថ្ងៃ គឺសុទ្ធសឹងតែ ជាអ្វីដែលខ្ញុំបានដឹងលឺ និងរៀនពី UWC ហើយខ្ញុំពិតជាមានសេចក្តីអំណរគុណខ្លាំងណាស់។ 

Having experienced with the IB program and intercultural learning in UWC really helped me move to college education. If I were to come straight from Cambodia to study in the US, I would have been way less prepared and more shocked by all the new cultures and way of living. Connections with friends and teachers in UWC also helped in this new phase of life. Because I took a gap year between UWC and college, and being a person who always wants to bridge gaps between different groups of people, I came to college prepared with a mindset that I will not stay in a bubble. Thus, I didn’t just hang out with other UWC or international students. I stepped outside of these groups to befriend American students as well. However this isn’t always easy, there are times that having common experiences with others from UWC make you just want to be with them. But if you try harder and believe that it’s important to break from the bubble, you’ll find a way to do it. Topics from UWC that really stuck with me are peacebuilding, gender equality, youth empowerment, global citizenship and sustainability. A lot of what I spend my time doing and learning at college nowadays is actually very influenced and inspired by these topics that I first heard about at UWC, and I am thankful for it.


Ung Panhasith, Siem Reap
UWC Thailand, 2018-2020

សំណួរ​ទី ១៖

តើអ្នករំពឹងទុកយ៉ាងដូចម្តេចខ្លះចំពោះ UWC និង ខ្លួនអ្នកផ្ទាល់ មុនពេលអ្នកទៅដល់សាលា UWC ប្រសិនបើអ្នកអាច រំលឹកឡើងវិញ?

Question 1: 

What were your expectations about UWC and yourself before you went to UWC if you could recall any?

នៅពេលដែលខ្ញុំដឹងថា ខ្ញុំទទួលបានអាហារូបករណ៍ ខ្ញុំមានអារម្មណ៍ច្របូកច្របល់។ ខ្ញុំពិតជារំភើប និង មានមោទនភាព ជាខ្លាំងនូវអ្វីដែលខ្ញុំសំរេចបាន។ ប៉ុន្តែខ្ញុំនៅមាន ការសង្ស័យចំពោះខ្លួនឯង។ ខ្ញុំបារម្ភ ថាតើការសិក្សារបស់ខ្ញុំនឹងទៅជាយ៉ាង ណា និង ថាតើខ្ញុំនឹងបង្ហាញពីប្រទេសរបស់ខ្ញុំយ៉ាងដូចម្តេច ដោយប្រើទស្សនះផ្ទាល់ខ្លួននិងមិនទទួលសំពាធពីអ្នកដ៏ទៃ។ ខ្ញុំបានចូលរៀននៅសាលា UWCT ប្រទេសថៃ ដោយដឹងថាខ្ញុំចង់ក្លាយជា អ្នកវិទ្យាសាស្ត្រអាហារ។ ខ្ញុំពុំបានខ្ជះខ្ជាយ ពេលវេលា ហើយបានរើសតែមុខវិជ្ជាណាអាចនាំខ្ញុំទៅដល់គោលដៅ តែក្រោយមកទើបខ្ញុំដឹងថាតាមពិតខ្ញុំអាចធ្វើបាន ល្អជាងនេះ។ ខ្ញុំពិតជាចង់ទទួលបានលទ្ធផលល្អក្នុងការសិក្សា ដូច្នេះខ្ញុំក៏បានចំណាយពេល មុនពេលទៅUWC ដើម្បី សិក្សាត្រៀមសំរាប់កម្មវិធីសិក្សា IB ដែលក្រោយមកខ្ញុំពិតជាមានការស្តាយក្រោយ។ បើទោះជាសំពាធក្នុងខ្លួនខ្ញុំកាន់តែ កញ្ច្រោលយ៉ាងណា ក៏ខ្ញុំនៅតែរំពឹងនឹងបង្ហាញពី វប្បធម៍ ជំនឿ និង គំនិតរបស់ខ្ញុំ។ ខ្ញុំតែងទន្ទឹងចាំ នូវការសន្ទនាជាមួយ មនុស្សមកពីជុំវិញពិភពលោក ដើម្បីតស៊ូមតិ និងគំនិតជាមួយគ្នា។ ខ្ញុំមានចេតនាចង់បង្ហាញពីកំហុសរបស់ខ្ញុំមុនពេល ខ្ញុំទៅ UWCT ដើម្បីអោយអនាគតសិស្ស UWC ដឹង និងមិនដាក់សំពាធខ្លួនឯងខ្លាំងពេក។ ចំណាយពេលវេលាដ៏មានតំលៃ ជាមួយគ្រួសារ និង មិត្តភក្តិ ញុំាអាហារឆ្ញាញ់ៗដែលអ្នកចូលចិត្ត និង រីករាយជាមួយពេលវេលាដែលនៅសេសសល់ មុនពេលអ្នកចេញទៅ UWC ព្រោះថាទោះបីជា ម្ហូបនៅសាលាឆ្ញាញ់យ៉ាងណាក៏ដោយ ក៏អ្នកនឹងនឹកម្ហូបផ្ទះដែរ។

When I realized I was offered the scholarship, I had mixed feelings. I was very excited and proud of what I accomplished. However, I also felt self-doubt. I was worried about how I was going to perform academically and be a great ambassador of my country while expressing myself without being pressured by the expectations of others. I went to UWCT knowing what I wanted to become: a food scientist. I wasted no time picking subjects that would lead me to my goal, which I sooner realized that I could have done better. I wanted to perform well academically, so I spent most of my pre-UWC time studying to prepare for the IB curriculum, which I later regretted doing. Despite the pressure that mustered inside me, I was also expecting to showcase my culture, belief, and ideology. I was looking forward to all the conversations I would have with people from every corner of the globe, to challenge their thought and to be challenged by others. I intentionally want to outline the mistakes I made before I went to UWCT to let prospective UWC students know to be gentle with themselves. Spend more quality time with your family and friends, eat good food, and enjoy your time before you depart to UWC because no matter how good the food is at school, you will miss your home-cooked meals.

សំណួរទី ២៖

តើអ្នករៀនបានអ្វីខ្លះពី UWC និង ពីខ្លួនឯង បន្ទាប់ពីចាកចេញពី UWC?

Question 2:

What did you learn about UWC and yourself after you left UWC?

បន្ទាប់ពីសិក្សាស្នាក់នៅ UWCT អស់រយះពេល២ឆ្នាំ សាលានេះបានក្លាយជាផ្ទះទី២របស់ខ្ញុំ។ UWCT គឺជាកន្លែងមួយដែលខ្ញុំអាចធ្វើជាខ្លួនខ្ញុំបានដោយមិនមានអ្នកចាំពេបជ្រាយ។ វាជាកន្លែងដែលខ្ញុំអាចចែករំលែកសម្លេង  គំនិត និង ជំនឿរបស់ខ្ញុំ ហើយខ្ញុំដឹងថានឹងមានអ្នករង់ចាំរិះគន់ដើម្បីស្ថាបនា និងអាចធ្វើអោយទស្សនះខ្ញុំកាន់តែប្រសើរ ឡើង។ ខ្ញុំបានរៀនពី UWC ថាការសិក្សាមិនស្ថិតលើពិន្ទុទាំងអស់ទេ ប៉ុន្តែវាក៏ស្ថិតលើ ការបណ្តុះបណ្តាលធនធានមនុស្ស ឲ្យក្លាយជាអ្នកដឹកនាំ អ្នកផ្លាស់ប្តូរ និង ជាពលរដ្ឋសកល។ កម្មវិធីសិក្សា IB ពិតជាពិបាក ហើយខ្ញុំបានចំនាយពេលជាច្រើន ដើម្បីទទួលបានលទ្ធផលមួយដ៏ល្អឥតខ្ចោះ។ ប៉ុន្តែវាពុំមែនជាអ្វីដែល ខ្ញុំចងចាំបំផុតនោះទេ។ អ្វីដែលស្ថិតក្នុងការចងចាំ របស់ខ្ញុំនោះគឺ ការសន្ទនាជាមួយមិត្តជនជាតិថៃរបស់ខ្ញុំអំពី ភាពដូចគ្នារវាងប្រទេសយើងទាំងពីរ ការជជែកគ្នា ដល់យប់ជ្រៅជាមួយមិត្តខ្ញុំមកពី ប្រទេសអេស្ប៉ាញ និង ពិភាក្សាអំពីសម័យខ្មែរក្រហមជាមួយសិស្សប្រវត្តិវិទ្យា ទៅវិញទេ។ ខ្ញុំត្រូវបានបង្ហាញពី សកម្មភាពជាច្រើន នៅ UWCT។ ក្រៅពីចំណាប់អារម្មណ៍លើផ្នែកវិទ្យាសាស្រ្ត ខ្ញុំចាប់ ផ្តើមដឹងថា ខ្ញុំក៏ចូលចិត្តសិល្បះគំនូរ តាមរយះការចូលរួមពិព័រណ៍គំនូររបស់មិត្តខ្ញុំម្នាក់ ហើយក៏ចាប់ផ្តើមស្វែងយល់ពី ទស្សនះវិជ្ជាសុីជម្រៅ តាមរយះការពិភាក្សាក្នុងថ្នាក់ TOK និងរកឃើញនូវក្តីស្រលាញ់លើកីឡាបាល់បោះ តាមរយះ ការប្រកួតកន្លងមក។ សរុបសេចក្តីមក UWC ជាកន្លែងដែលខ្ញុំអាចពន្លឿន និង ធ្វើឲ្យខ្លួនឯងរីកចម្រើនទាំងការសិក្សា និង ភាពជាមនុស្ស។ ខ្ញុំក៏បានរកឃើញចំណង់ចំណូលចិត្តជាច្រើន ដែលខ្ញុំពុំដែលដឹងកន្លងមក ដោយការសាកល្បងលើ សកម្មភាពទាំងឡាយដែលនៅក្រៅពីរង្វង់សុវត្ថិភាពរបស់ខ្ញុំ។ ខ្ញុំពិតជាមានអំណរគុណណាស់ ដែលអាចចូលរៀននៅ UWCT និង បានស្គាល់មនុស្សល្អអស្ចារ្យជាច្រើន។

After residing in UWCT for two years, it became my second home. UWCT was a place where I could express myself without being judged. It was a place where I could share my voice, my ideas, and my beliefs, and I knew that people would be open to criticize and improve my point of view. I learned that in UWC, it is not entirely about the grade, but it is about building a group of human beings that will be leaders, change-makers, and global citizens. The IB curriculum was hard and I spent most of my time perfecting it. However, it is not something that I remember the most. What I remember are the conversations I had with my Thai friends about the similarities between our country, the late-night talks about my friend’s business from Spain, and the discussion about the Khmer Rouge with the history students. I was exposed to many different activities in UWCT. Apart from my interest in science, I realized that I enjoy art through attending my friend’s art fair, and was inspired to look deeper into philosophy through all the interesting conversations in my TOK class, and found a love for basketball through all the competitions we had. To sum everything up, UWC was a place where I could accelerate and improve myself academically and as a human being. I discovered many hidden interests by exposing myself to activities that are beyond my comfort zone. I am very grateful to have been able to attend UWCT and to know these amazing human beings.

សំណួរទី ៣៖

តើបទពិសោធន៍នៅUWC របស់អ្នកបានជួយអ្វីខ្លះដល់អ្នកដើម្បីតម្រង់ទិសនៃដំណើរបន្ទាប់របស់អ្នក?

Question 3:

How did your UWC experience help you navigate your next journey?

​​​​​​​UWCT បានជួយតម្រង់ទិសនៃដំណើររបស់ខ្ញុំតាមមធ្យោបាយជាច្រើន។ ខ្ញុំអាចបន្តការសិក្សារបស់ខ្ញុំនៅ សហរដ្ឋអាមេរិច ក្រោមការជួយជ្រោមជ្រែងរបស់លោកគ្រូអ្នកគ្រូ នៅ UWCT។ តាមរយះកម្មវិធីសិក្សា IB និង ប្រពន្ធ័ប្រឹក្សាយោបល់ជ្រើសរើសមហាវិទ្យាល័យដ៏រឹងមាំ ខ្ញុំអាចដាក់ពាក្យទៅសកលវិទ្យាល័យល្អៗជាច្រើននៅ ជុំវិញពិភពលោក ដើម្បីចាប់យកក្តីស្រម៉ៃរបស់ខ្ញុំ។ ជាងនេះទៅទៀត UWC ក៏មានសម្ពន្ត័អតីតសិស្សជាច្រើន។ ជាមួយនឹងអតីតសិស្សជាង ២៦០០០ នាក់នៅជុំវិញពិភពលោក ខ្ញុំអាចស្វែងរកជំនួយ អ្នកផ្តល់យោបល់ និង ពត៍មានពីពួកគាត់។ ក្រៅពីឱកាសសិក្សាផ្តល់ឲ្យដោយ UWCT សាលាក៏បានបង្រៀននូវមេរៀនមានតំលៃផ្សេងៗ។ មេរៀនដ៏មានតំលៃមួយដែលខ្ញុំបានរៀន គឺថា អ្នកដ៏ទៃ បើទោះបីជាគេមានភាពខុសគ្នាពីយើង ក៏មិនប្រាកដថាវា ជារឿងខុសនោះដែរ។ មេរៀននេះបានជួយអោយខ្ញុំយល់ពីពិភពលោក ចេញពីទស្សនះផ្សេងៗគ្នា។ ខ្ញុំយល់ថា ការគិតបែបនេះ គឺសំខាន់ខ្លាំងណាស់ ពិសេសក្នុងបរិយាកាសអន្តរជាតិ ដែលគ្រប់គ្នាមានប្រវត្តិវប្បធម៌ខុសគ្នា ដែលការបញ្ចេញមតិផ្ទុយគ្នាគឺមិនអាចជៀសបាន។ រឿងមួយដែលចាក់ដោតខ្លាំងបំផុតលើខ្ញុំនោះគី ការពិភាក្សាលើប្រធានបទផ្សេងៗ ដែលមិនដែលត្រូវគេលើកមកនិយាយក្នុងប្រទេសកម្ពុជា។ ប្រធានបទទាំងនោះ មានដូចជា សិទ្ធិស្ត្រី សហគមន៍ស្រលាញ់ភេទដូចគ្នា បញ្ហាបរិស្ថាន និង ការប្រកាន់ពូជសាសន៍។ ដោយបានចូលរួម ចំណែកពិភាក្សាអំពីប្រធានបទទាំងនេះ ខ្ញុំកាន់តែស្វែងយល់បានច្រើន និង យល់កាន់តែប្រសើរឡើង។ ខ្ញុំគិតថា ការសន្ទនាទាំងនេះគឺជាគ្រឹះដ៏សំខាន់ ក្នុងការធ្វើអោយពិភពលោកក្លាយជាកន្លែងមួយកាន់តែប្រសើរឡើង ដោយបន្ថយនូវភាពរើសអើង បែងចែកពូជសាសន៍ និង ការបំបិទសិទ្ធិ។ ​​​​​​​

UWCT helps me navigate my journey in many different ways. I can continue my education in the United States with the help of faculties at UWCT. From using the IB as our curriculum, and to have a strong and experienced university counseling system, I can apply to many great schools all around the world and pursue my dreams. Furthermore, UWC has a strong alumni connection. With more than 26,000 alumni all around the world, I can seek support, mentorship, or help from them. However, apart from the academic opportunities offered by UWCT, the school also taught me many valuable lessons. One meaningful lesson I learned from UWCT is that other people, with their differences, can also be right. This lesson helps me understand the world from multiple perspectives. In my opinion, this ideology is very important, especially inside an international environment where everyone coming from different cultures and opposing standpoints is inevitable. One thing that strikes me the most was the amount of conversations and discussions I had about topics that I rarely see being addressed in Cambodia. Those topics include women’s rights, the LGBTQ community, environmental crises, and racism. By exposing myself to these unfamiliar topics, I am constantly being educated and improved. In my opinion, these conversations are the foundation to make the world a better place with less segregation, discrimination, and exclusion.


Taing Muykong, Siem Reap
UWC Maastricht, 2018-2020

សំណួរ​ទី ១៖

តើអ្នករំពឹងទុកយ៉ាងដូចម្តេចខ្លះចំពោះ UWC និង ខ្លួនអ្នកផ្ទាល់ មុនពេលអ្នកទៅដល់សាលា UWC ប្រសិនបើអ្នកអាច រំលឹកឡើងវិញ?

Question 1: 

What were your expectations about UWC and yourself before you went to UWC if you could recall any?

មុនពេលមកដល់ UWC Maastricht​ អារម្មណ៍រំភើបនិងរីករាយសម្រាប់ជំពូកថ្មីនៃជីវិតរបស់ខ្ញុំ បានបង្កើតការរំពឹងទុកជាច្រើនលើ UWC ។ ខ្ញុំរំពឹងថាវាជាកន្លែងមួយដ៏ឥតខ្ចោះ ដែលសិស្សអាចរស់នៅចុះសម្រុងគ្នា ស្របពេលដែល ពួកគេអាចបង្កើតឥទ្ធិពលវិជ្ជមានលើពិភពលោក បើទោះជាគេមានប្រវត្តិខុសគ្នាយ៉ាងណាក៏ដោយ។ ខ្ញុំរំពឹងថា គំនិត នឹង ទស្សនះរបស់សិស្ស នឹងត្រូវបានផ្តល់តំលៃជាជាងការវាយតំលៃ។ ការរំពឹងទុកទាំងនោះធ្វើឱ្យខ្ញុំរឹតតែរំភើបសម្រាប់​ UWCដែល ជាកន្លែងដ៏ល្អសម្រាប់ខ្ញុំក្នុងការរៀននិងរីកចម្រើនក្នុងនាមជាសិស្ស។ ដូច្នេះ ជាមួយនឹងការរំពឹងទុកទាំងនោះសម្រាប់ UWC ខ្ញុំចង់អោយខ្លួនខ្ញុំខិតខំប្រឹងប្រែងបន្ថែមទៀត ដើម្បីមានលក្ខណៈសម្បត្តិគ្រប់គ្រាន់សំរាប់ត្រៀមខ្លួនចំពោះអ្វីៗដែលUWC​ នឹងបង្រៀនខ្ញុំ។

Prior to arriving at UWC Maastricht, my feelings of excitement and enthusiasm for the new chapter of my life has created many expectations I have for UWC. I expected UWC to be a perfect utopia where students can live along well with each other while making huge positive impacts on the world, despite their different backgrounds. I expected it to be the place where student’s ideas and perspectives are valuable without judgments. Those expectations make me even more excited for UWC as the ideal place for me to learn and grow as a student. Therefore, with those expectations for UWC, I want myself to thrive to the fullest in order to be qualified for what UWC has in-line waiting for me.

សំណួរទី ២៖

តើអ្នករៀនបានអ្វីខ្លះពី UWC និង ពីខ្លួនឯង បន្ទាប់ពីចាកចេញពី UWC? ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Question 2:

What did you learn about UWC and yourself after you left UWC?

ទោះបីជាសិស្សដែលមក UWC នេះសុទ្ធសឹងជាអ្នកជំរុញដោយ ចលនានិងគុណតម្លៃរបស់ UWCក៏ដោយ អ្នកទាំងអស់គ្នា នៅទីនេះមានវប្បធម៌និងប្រវត្តិផ្សេងគ្នាដែលបង្កការលំបាកក្នុងការយល់និងរស់នៅដើម្បីឲ្យស្របតាមគុណតម្លៃរបស់ UWC ។ គ្រប់គ្នា មានការយល់ដឹងផ្ទាល់ខ្លួនអំពីអ្វីដែល UWC មានសម្រាប់ពួកគេ ដែលពេលខ្លះវាមិនមានន័យដូចគ្នា សម្រាប់គ្រប់គ្នានោះទេ។ 

បើទោះបីតម្លៃរបស់ UWC អាចត្រូវបានបកស្រាយតាមអត្ថន័យផ្សេងៗគ្នាជាច្រើន តែយើងក៏អាចសម្របសម្រួលនិងបញ្ចូល តម្លៃរបស់ UWC ទៅក្នុងដំណើរទៅមុខរបស់យើងបន្តទៅទៀត។ ដូច្នេះហើយ នេះជាវិធីដែលខ្ញុំបានរកឃើញខ្លួនឯង នៅពេលកំពុង ស្វែងយល់ពីអត្ថន័យរបស់UWC ដែលមានន័យសម្រាប់ខ្ញុំ ដោយមិនចាំបាច់ស្របតាមការរំពឹងទុករបស់មនុស្សជុំវិញនិងមិត្តភក្តិ។ ខ្ញុំដឹងថាខ្ញុំមិនចាំបាច់ដើរតាមគេ រឺគិតដូចគេគ្រប់ពេលវេលា ដោយសារតែខ្លាចភាពអាម៉ាស់ចំពោះបុគ្គលិកលក្ខណៈនិងអទិភាពរបស់ខ្ញុំ រឺដើម្បីស្របតាមការរំពឹងទុករបស់អ្នកដែលនៅជុំវិញខ្ញុំឡើយ។ ខណៈពេលដែលខ្ញុំព្យាយាមបំពេញតំរូវការរបស់អ្នកដទៃ ខ្ញុំចាប់ផ្តើមបាត់បង់តុល្យភាពរវាងអ្វីដែលខ្ញុំចង់សំរេច និងជីវិតសង្គមរបស់ខ្ញុំ។ ក្រឡេកទៅមើលពេលវេលារបស់ខ្ញុំនៅ UWC នេះគឺជាអ្វីដែលខ្ញុំចង់ប្រាប់ UWCers នាពេលអនាគតថាត្រូវធ្វើឱ្យមានតុល្យភាពរវាងអាទិភាពផ្ទាល់ខ្លួន និងការរំពឹងទុក របស់សហគមន៍។ចុងក្រោយ ទោះបីបន្ទាប់ពីខ្ញុំបានចាកចេញពី UWC តម្លៃនៃបទពិសោធនៅ UWCនៅតែមានអត្ថន័យច្រើនចំពោះដំណើរអនាគតនិងជីវិតប្រចាំថ្ងៃរបស់ខ្ញុំ។ ខ្ញុំនៅតែអាចរំលឹកឡើងវិញពីសុភមង្គលពិត ការលំបាករបស់ខ្ញុំ ហើយ រឿងរ៉ាវរយៈពេល ២ ឆ្នាំនៅ Maastricht នឹងបន្តរស់នៅក្នុងបេះដូងខ្ញុំ។

Although people came to UWC driven by the movement and values that UWC promotes, everyone here has different culture and backgrounds which make it difficult to understand and live up to the UWC values. Everyone has their own understanding of what UWC was like for them, what UWC means for them and it doesn’t have to be the same thing for everyone. Just as UWC values can be interpreted in many different ways. We can compromise and incorporate UWC values into our journey forward. Therefore, this is how I discovered myself when trying to understand what UWC values mean for me without living up to the expectation of surrounding people and peers. I have come to realize that I don’t have to follow the crowds all the time, to not feel ashamed of my own personality and priorities just to live up to the expectation of the community around me. While trying to fulfill other’s needs so much, I started to lose the balance between what I want to achieve and my community life. Looking back at my time at UWC, this would be what I want to tell the future UWCers which is to balance between your own priorities and the community expectations. Last, even after I left UWC, its value still means so much to my future journey and my daily life. I was able to recall my genuine happiness and my hardships afterward and the story of 2 years at Maastricht will continue to live in my heart. 

សំណួរទី ៣៖

តើបទពិសោធន៍នៅUWC របស់អ្នកបានជួយអ្វីខ្លះដល់អ្នកដើម្បីតម្រង់ទិសនៃដំណើរបន្ទាប់របស់អ្នក? ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Question 3:

How did your UWC experience help you navigate your next journey? 

បទពិសោធន៍នៅUWCជាបទពិសោធន៍ផ្លាស់ប្តូរជីវិតដែលជួយខ្ញុំឱ្យដឹងពីរបៀបដែលខ្ញុំអាចបង្កើតឥទ្ធិពលវិជ្ជមានតាមរយៈការបំពេញក្តី សុបិន្តរបស់ខ្ញុំ។ ចាប់តាំងពីខ្ញុំបានទៅ UWC Maastricht ខ្ញុំមិនមានអារម្មណ៍ដូចជាខ្ញុំរស់នៅក្នុងរង្វងដដែលគ្រប់ពេល នោះទេ។ វាតែងតែមានអ្វីមួយកើតឡើងនៅក្នុងសាលាចាប់ពីម៉ោង ៨ ព្រឹក -១០ ល្ងាច។ ដូច្នេះខ្ញុំត្រូវដើរចេញពីរង្វង់ក្តីសុខដែល ខ្ញុំធ្លាប់មាន ដើម្បីទទួលយកទស្សនវិស័យនិងការយល់ដឹងថ្មីៗ។ ក្នុងអំឡុងពេលខ្ញុំនៅ UWC ប្រធានបទដែលលេចធ្លោ ចំពោះខ្ញុំគឺភាពជាស្ត្រីនិងសមភាពយេនឌ័រ។

សហគមន៍នៅទីនោះមានវិធីដើម្បីផ្តល់ការយល់ដឹងអំពីភាពជាស្ត្រីតាមរយៈសិល្បះសម្តែងដែល ធ្វើឱ្យខ្ញុំចាប់អារម្មណ៏យ៉ាងខ្លាំង ក្នុងឆ្នាំដំបូងនៅ UWC ។ បន្ទាប់ពីនោះ ខ្ញុំចាប់ផ្តើមយល់ដឺងកាន់តែជ្រៅជ្រះអំពីភាពជាស្ត្រី។ តាមពិតគំនិតនេះបានបង្ហាញជា មនោគមន៍វិជ្ជាជ្រុលមួយទៅកាន់មិត្តភក្តិខ្ញុំមួយចំនួន នៅពេលនោះបានក្លាយជាគំនិតដែលខ្ញុំអាច ទាក់ទង និង តម្រឹមដូចស្ត្រីម្នាក់ដែល ឆ្លុះបញ្ចាំងពីវប្បធម៌កម្ពុជា។ បន្ទាប់ពីការរៀននិងការយល់ដឹងឥតឈប់ឈរ ខ្ញុំអាចនិយាយដោយ ក្លាហានថាខ្ញុំជាស្ត្រីដែល រស់នៅដើម្បីគាំទ្រនិងផ្តល់អំណាចដល់ស្ត្រីនិងឈរគាំទ្រសមភាពយេនឌ័រនិងសមធម៌។

UWC experiences as a life-changing experience help me discover how I can make positive impacts via fulfilling my dream. Since I went to UWC Maastricht, I wasn’t feeling like I lived in a bubble all the time. There was always something going on in the school and the dorms from 8 AM-10 PM. Therefore, I have to step outside of my comfort zones, from the culture I used to in order to welcome new perspectives and understanding. During my time at UWC, the topic that stands out to me is feminism and gender equality. The community has a way to deliver the understanding of feminism through the plays and performances which amazed me so much during my first year at UWC. After that, I started to dive deeper into learning what feminism is like. In fact, the idea conveyed as an extreme ideology to some of my friends at that time has become the idea that I can relate and align with as a woman reflecting onto Cambodia culture. After constantly learning and understanding, I can bravely say that I’m a feminist, living to support and empower women and to stand for gender equality and equity.


Ton Polen, Siem Reap
UWC South East Asia, 2015-2020

I can no longer see myself living without making a difference for others and I can no longer ignore the hardship that others go through.

Even though it might sound cheesy, it is true—these past five years at UWCSEA have changed my life completely. I used to be someone whose first priority was education and having the best grades, but after my time here, I have realized that there are things that matter more, such as making a difference in the world.

UWCSEA gave me the best education and so many opportunities—local and College Service, Global Concerns and Activities. All of these elements together have impacted the way I look at the world, the way I perceive the meaning of life, which is not just to live for myself, but for others too. I have come so far, that I can no longer see myself living without making a difference for others and I can no longer ignore the hardship that others go through.

Working with Global Concerns such as Tabitha has been really impactful and it has been inspiring to meet and help so many kids in Cambodia. One of my most memorable UWCSEA experiences was volunteering with IfP in Thailand. All the kids that I talked to had different experiences and stories, and they all want to make a difference and shape their futures.

After graduation I will attend Northwestern University (USA) and study Architecture and Civil Engineering. I am absolutely determined to give more young Cambodians access to transformational educational experiences, such as UWCSEA. But wherever I go, I will take the UWC values with me and I will continue making a difference.


Men Monirothanak, Phnom Penh
Pearson College UWC, 2019-2021 
 

Rotanak (right)
Monirothanak (right) and friends during her first two months at Pearson College UWC

Truth be told, campus life at Pearson is busy and exhilarating. So exhilarating in fact that it could get overwhelming sometimes. Schedules are jam-packed and there have been so many new experiences crammed into two months that it feels like I’ve been here for a long, long time. The silver lining is that I actually have control over what my schedule consists of. Things may be crazy but it’s just the right kind of crazy. The energy, the thrill, the excitement that followed doing the activities I’m interested in and the people I’m doing it with has been absolutely incredible.Aside from the occasional waves of nostalgia of home, I’m quickly adjusting to this place. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss the friends and family in Cambodia but I take this as an opportunity to grow in a different environment, with all the different and diverse people I live and study with from over 150 countries. Being here still feels surreal sometimes but seeing change as the only constant, I'm glad that I get to choose change as being in Pearson.


Ratana Kin, Banteay Meanchey
UWC Robert Bosch College, 
2019-2021 
 

Ratana and friends during her first semester at UWC Robert Bosch College, Germany

I find life at UWC Robert Bosch to be very exciting because I get to explore many new things here. Although I struggled with the English language for the first two weeks, it is no longer a big issue for me. This is because of the help I continue to receive from my teachers and the student bodies at the school.

There are a lot of things to study for an IB student, which can sometimes cause a lot of stress. But with better time management and clear schedule, I am able to manage all the academic workload. In terms of social life, I find that students here always make each other feel at home. We live in a small community that is rich in life’s experiences. If it is hard to live in one’s own society, then it is even harder to live with people from other societies. Yet, only 20 minutes sitting at a dining table with students from other countries, it’s amazing how much I can learn from them. When we face any problem living together, we address it by sharing with each other our ideas. As a result, we often reach an effective solution to solve that problem. Because of our cultural differences, it is not unusual for us to misunderstand each other. However, if we take a moment to explain to each other, we can make the situation better for all of us.

UWC is a truly beautiful experience to have even though it can be overwhelming sometimes. And I am proud to be a part of this diverse community. It has opened my eyes to see how big the world really is and gives me the opportunity to explore so many things in it.


Vitou Put, Phnom Penh
UWC-USA, 2019-2021 

 

Vitou with friends and teachers at an outdoor excursion at UWC-USA

 

I have been at UWC-USA for about three months now, and it has been a totally different experience for me. Everything was new to me at the beginning: the school, the buildings, the atmosphere, the food, and the cultures. But most importantly, I met new faces from around the world. When I first arrived, I felt like I was stepping into a whole new world--or rather a virtual reality. Even certain things I had been familiar with seemed foreign to me. 

The school follows the IB curriculum, which is rigorous and intensely challenging. But it also offers a unique social community that is rich in its diversity. I believe this kind of living environment is hard to find anywhere else. Here we all live on campus, and I get to share a dorm room with another student from a different part of the world. All of this not only allows you to get to know and bond with people from different backgrounds, but also gives you many opportunities to shape your own future and possibly bring change to those around you. Overall, I feel very fortunate to be here at UWC-USA and continue to have this wonderful experience for the next two years of my life. 


Mengsrun Nit, Banteay Meanchey
UWC Changshu China, 
2019-2021 
 

Mengsrun (centre) and friends at UWC Changshu China

I am finally here at UWC CSC despite being almost six weeks late due to delayed visa processes. When I arrived l, I received a warm welcome from the people here and was surprised to find how friendly they are. They also provided me full support in choosing my IB subjects and arranging extra classes with teachers to make up for all the lessons I missed. They further helped me catch up and understand the school routine. All these supports made it possible for me to deal with the challenging academic life of IB despite my struggle with language and being late. There are times when I feel very down because of my struggle and homesickness, yet I always feel motivated by the support I receive from the people around me.

Before I came, I watched a lot of YouTube videos about the school, and I just love it now that I am here. Everything is so awesome. I met new talented people from different walks of life and we started sharing our experience and talking about our country, currency, languages to understand each other well. Although I miss home, I feel at home here with these people. I went to a Chinese village with friends and got to taste Chinese food, although I still miss Cambodian food. I am learning a lot from these ongoing experiences at UWC. They help me to discover who I am and what I am doing here. I feel truly lucky to be apart of UWC CSC and to continue this journey for the next two years. 


Pa Séridang, Pursat
UWC Mahindra College, 2013-2015
 

Pa Sèridang (in levender colored tie), UWC Mahindra College 2014 - 2016,
Middlebury College , 2016 - 2020

On August 23rd, 2013, I left home for the first time to study at the Mahindra United World College of India (MUWCI). I can still remember that day vividly. I had never been on an airplane or alone in another country so traveling to India all by myself was a huge deal for me. On the escalator in the airport where we separated, I knew I would not be able to hold back my tears while waving to my family but I did not want my family to worry so I just faked a smile and turned away quickly. As I continued to the security check, it really hit me that I would not see my family or anyone I know for a really long time, and that I would not be able to rely on my family to be there for me in difficult times anymore.

In my first term, academics were a huge challenge. It was my first time studying Economics and Chemistry and it was also my first time studying in English so I did not understand half of what my teachers talked about in class. I thought I was going to fail the courses. Nonetheless, I kept asking questions in class and outside of class in broken English and kept reading the textbooks before and after class. As time went by, my English and my understanding of the subjects got stronger and now I am acing my classes. I learned that I could do without my family in tough times even when it was overwhelming sometimes.

I learned to not be afraid to step out of my comfort zone and I realized that I learn the most when that happens. Last winter break, I went trekking for the first time on the Annapurna circuit in Nepal with a group of friends and teachers. The trek was both physical and mentally challenging for me because I never walked such long distances with a backpack or slept outside in sub-zero weather. At the time, I said never again but after a few months, I was looking forward to another trek because I learned how to take care of myself in such conditions and I was much more mentally prepared and there are also many rewards on the trek such as the intimate friendship bonds, the mesmerizing landscapes, and the beautiful simple mountain life. Had I not come to MUWCI, I would not have ever gone hiking at all because I would have been still a mom's boy and I would not have been brave enough to step out my comfort zone.

MUWCI is full of people that I can learn so much from. Back home, homosexuality is regarded as abnormalities. One of my roommates was gay and he told me homosexuality was not a choice. Through spending time together, I realized the truth in his perspective despite our difference, and now he is one of my best friends. I learned from my Economics teacher why the drought in Ethiopia increased child marriages dramatically. It is because if your daughter is married, you have one less mouth to feed. This gender-biased problem goes beyond "culture" to risk management by the poor in response to shocks. I would not have learn any of these in Cambodia.

There is no doubt that coming to MUWCI marked my transition from childhood to adulthood. My advisor can still remember the first night I arrived in India. My flight arrived two hours late because of the weather so I could not contact my parents. Because my parents do not speak English, they made my little brother, who knew a little English, call my advisor 20 times until 4 am. Back then, I did not even know how to book a flight ticket and now I am planning my own trekking trip to north India with my friends.