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American Dream

Essay by   •  December 7, 2017  •  Essay  •  2,083 Words (9 Pages)  •  348 Views

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Vu Nguyen

It has been forty-five days since I landed off in Chicago International Airport, become an official international student in the United States of America.[a] Jonesboro is a quiet city in Arkansas, but A[b][c]-State – Home of the Red Wolves is not. I feel so proud to be a Red Wolf at this moment but I still remember the days that I was [d]“fighting” and working with two hundred percent effort to realize my American dream. Those were a bunch of struggling, tiring but happy days during a long period until April of this fabulous year – 2017.

A throwback to [e][f]when I was a little boy in secondary school, I was dreaming of America every single day. Therefore, I love everything relating to America or has images, symbols of this great nation. Going to study abroad might become a trend so far in my country, especially having American educational environment. When I conducted a survey in my class, ninety percent of students want to live in America, including me. Throughout secondary school years, I had been watching my friends leaving the city to travel to Australia, USA or European countries, some of them had gone for studying, some others seeking a new life[g]. At that time, my desire was becoming bigger than ever, however, as a fifteen boy, I wasn’t able to persuade my parents to give me an opportunity. Furthermore, it’s also due to the financial struggle that they[h][i] had been suffering from during those years, the amount of money for four-year study or even longer in America was not small for people in a developing country as Vietnam.

Time flew so fast, [j][k][l]entering the high school, sometimes I had been thinking of giving up this dream and trying to pursue what my parents wish[m][n]ed I was going to be. To be honest, I felt very tired and downhearted. I found it interesting when participating in youth activities and joining some organizations to do volunteer work[o]. Every day I was just studying and considering volunteering as my part-time job to be hard-working and serious with them. After a year, I became the founder and leader of several projects and non-profit organizations emphasizing in education in my city. Apparently, I kicked the dream which had been growing up, out of my mind somehow.

However, I just realized that I literally couldn’t do that when it came to a study abroad fair taking place in my high school. As a class monitor, I was put in a priority to be arranged to do an English placement test for high school students with no-cost. If my result was above the standard score, I would get a full scholarship to study in the US as an exchange student for one year. My aspiration had been again raising up until the day I received the result. I was the student who got the highest score among over 400 contestants, it was such a most surprising news ever to me. Nevertheless, it was also the worst day ever in my entire life. I came home with a sense of excitement and smiles appearing on my face during the way home. That was not an ending of a day as happy as the Korean romantic dramas, I showed the result to my parents, immediately, my father said “No” as if he was the judge in America’s Got Talents saying to contestants who failed in their performance. Yes, “No” meant that I wouldn’t be allowed to get that scholarship and had to stay in Vietnam to continue my study, graduate and enter a well-known Vietnamese college. I felt like everything in the sky was falling down onto my head after hearing that word. All my effort one more time was thrown away. A bunch of negative thoughts had begun coming out into my mind. Without any responses, I went to my room in silence and torn down all my American stuff[p][q][r], threw them into the wastebasket[s]. Lying on the bed, I really wanted to cry but I couldn’t. Perhaps, the disappointment and hopelessness led me to an emotionless status. The atmosphere in my family became so upset and cold during a month. My mother tried to explain to me, but I refused to listen while my father and I hadn’t talked to each other for several weeks since that time.

The senior year in high school of me became a series of boring days, nothing out of the ordinary. I didn’t want to wake up in the morning because I couldn’t see the light in my future when I already lost the way to my goal. I also didn’t want to sleep at night because I would be thinking of pessimistic things.

Summer came, it's very hot outside and students seemed to be m[t][u][v][w][x]elting riding bicycles to the last classes of a school year. 2015 summer was such a very important milestone to me. I had to take two biggest tests of a Vietnamese student’s life, one for high school graduation and another one was the entrance exam for college, similar to ACT in America. On the exam days, the streets were the most crowded and hottest than ever because of tons of motorbikes exhaling carbon dioxide since parents would want to drive their children to the exam places and wait for them until the exam finished. I said this milestone was very crucial because it was not only a turning point in my study pathway but also turned my life into a new page, the new story actually began from here.[y] 

After finishing the last exam day, in the chaos of people, I saw a girl who looks so familiar with a sister working with me in a non-profit organization from the US a couple of years ago. We had been teaching English free for people in my city. Once again, I stared at her, she might know someone looking at her but tried to avoid. I took all my confidence to walk closer to her. Suddenly, she asked me who I am and she was kind of wary of me. "Hi Van, long time no see", I said[z]. She was quiet for a while and then smiled "Sorry, Do I know you?" [aa][ab]Because we just worked together for a month and she’s been studying in the US for a long time, that’s why she didn’t remember me. I was trying to remind her of that year. We were chatting for over five hours and when I told her about my situation, my American dream, she said: "To study in the US, you have to prepare a lot of thing [ac]step by step, don’t give up and don’t be hurry”. Since that day, she had become my mentor, joined a hand to make my American dream come true.



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