• editor

My journey to America

I’m a girl from Hyderabad, one of the most beautiful cities in India. After finishing high school, I was all set to follow my passion of studying abroad. I recall the moment my visa was approved my visa, and I was ready to travel out of my country to this amazing world of my dreams. It was quite hard as a 19-year-old girl to leave my parents and home, but I was confident enough of my ability to achieve my goals and make my parents proud one day. I still can't forget how my dad used to smile at me and say, “You are such a little girl! Who would give you a visa at this young age?” Little did he know, his daughter would soon be flying away. I flew away and hence, my journey started...

On the 4th of August 2015 at 2:30 am I landed in the San Francisco airport. Looking at the beautiful city outside, I couldn’t believe that I made it here. It felt very challenging. I was nervous thinking about the new environment I would be getting into. This was my first international flight ever. It was a long flight and felt bothered jet lag already. I saw this young man who had come to receive me at the airport, named Rizwan. He was from my city and a master’s student in a different school. Luckily, we met on a social website where he helps new students coming to America with their questions and other things. Since I did not have a US driver’s license, I had to rely on public transportation. Rizwan introduced me to the “digital life” of America beginning from transportation. My first Bart ride was a bit scary, but seeing a lot of people in the train, I convinced myself that it's nothing dangerous.

“I was ready to travel out of my country to this amazing world of my dreams”

Real life began on the first day of orientation in my department. I was introduced to my core subjects and the wonderful team of student services, who helped me clear all my doubts. My first class on ‘Medical Terminology’ with Dr. Khatia Mania will never fade from my memory. She is the most talented and beautiful professor I’ve ever come to have. This class was my first step towards the medical world. It gave me a clear idea of the field I was getting into. All the new medical terms that I learned in this class made me more passionate about the subject. It made Dr. Khatia Mania my role model. I was always a human biology lover and ‘Diagnostic Imaging’ was the best degree I could start with. After finishing my first semester with the foundations of basic human ‘Anatomy’ and ‘Biology’, I was introduced to the principles and protocols for ‘Ultrasound’.

One morning, I was all prepared to enter the lab and do the very first scanning of my life. For the first time ever, I was wearing my new blue lab scrubs. I looked at myself in the mirror and realized how beautiful it is to be with something that you love. I imagined, one day I would be working in my profession and will always have this scrub as my first priority. It was our first lab session and we were taught to scan the liver. I was very excited for my first hands-on experience. I realized that this was going to take a lot of practice and as days passed, I did successfully complete my courses. Each semester, we kept going deeper into the vast and broad coursework and I got so involved in the lab, spending hours in practice and learning new techniques in scanning. I will always be thankful to the amazing professors I had, who helped me in knowing everything that I now know.

As time went by, we moved to advanced scanning courses. I was learning Obstetrician-Gynecologist ultrasound, and yet again, I fell in love with the whole pregnancy scanning process. It’s so amazing to know how a human baby develops in the uterus and you keep an eye on it during the whole process. It’s that beautiful feeling of seeing a tiny heart beating inside the uterus and monitoring its growth into a perfectly beautiful fetus. Our job is to help the doctors by giving them all the data that is necessary and required.

I could never in words express the feeling of my very first time scanning one of my pregnant friends. I took four important measurements that I was supposed to do for my in-class exam, which was BPD (Biparietal Diameter), HC (Head Circumference), AC (Abdominal Circumference) and FL(Femur Length). It’s unbelievable that I have accomplished so many great things and have a treasure of knowledge in just the first half of my undergraduate program. In these 3 years of my degree, so far, I have realized that my profession will not only be limited to obstetric ultrasound, but also dynamic on its own. I have so many options for my interests to choose from, Such as abdominal vascular, echo cardio, pediatric, and general abdominal ultrasound. These all are so interesting that I want to master all of them, if I can. I am really looking forward to finishing my bachelors in the coming two years.

From a practical perspective, I have accomplished a lot here. I gained a few credits and academic knowledge and have crossed off many wishes on my bucket list. My life has changed. I was an independent person before, and by managing to study abroad I have demonstrated this. I have all my experiences to cherish and learn from, as well as an accomplishment on my resume that establishes, I am capable and mature enough to take the initiative to relocate, adapt to a new environment, and learn from new resources.

All thanks to Lincoln University and the amazing professors.

-Hasba Baig