When you start moving the rusty bearings in your brain, its like opening a tap and the water can't stop running. More and more long forgotten memories kept resurfacing in my mind in the last few days.
I came to realised that I had completely forgotten to write about a much hated but integral part of a student life: exams.
In our Uni, 80% is enough to get a High Distinction (HD). Sounds easy initially, so I vowed early on that I will get HDs in all the subjects I take in Uni. Unfortunately, like so many things it is easier said than done. In the first year, I fall short by one subject each semester. In the second year, it was short by 2 subjects per semester. In the third year... I can't bear to finish it. The interesting fact about exams result is that we receive it by SMS. So there's usually no time to prepare myself mentally reading the results.
The exams consume a whole lot of my life. Its like two whole month each year dedicated to study for them. It was so hard to condense 12 weeks of studies into 2 or 3 hour papers. Luckily most of the answers require rote memorisation, which is a skill I'm relatively good at. Many thanks to the Malaysian education system. but actually, the Australian system is not that much better. Memorisation is still the key to high scores. It was something I am a little disappointed about.
A lot of my friends assume that I got good results all the while since I am a JPA scholar, which is far from the truth. They will be amazed by how mediocre it really is. But anyway, I had slowly learnt that having good results doesn't mean anything much in the real world. There are so many other components for growth that is far more important.
There are really a lot of different people in Uni who can change your perception on things. I started to question my obsession to get high marks when I realised that they are some people who are just happy to get a credit. Getting high marks doesn't mean that I will be a better pharmacist; just that I'm better at taking exams.
One of my friends recently said something which made me pondered a lot. "You know Boon Phiaw, sometimes you do things that doesn't mean anything to you but meant a lot to the other person" How true. I was at the 'other person' end a few times during my first couple of years in Uni.
One such moment that stood out was in first year when a 3rd year student approached us and introduce himself to us. It was sometime in April during an informal meeting where a group of them wanted to introduce PISA to us. Up to then, no seniors had made the effort to speak to us. Even though he only asked us our names and where we are from, his action left a deep impression on me. For once, I felt that I'm not an insignificant freshie but someone who is worthy enough to converse with. I was made to feel important, like how it was put by Dale Carnegie in his famed book How to Win Friends and Influence People.
I believe all the efforts I made nowadays to get to know juniors and assist them when the need arises stemmed from this encounter. I did it based on my own desire last time to have a senior to mentor me, someone whom can be my role model. I am of the opinion that being a senior student, there's a responsibility to try and guide younger students so that they can reach their goals in life. I don't really know whether by doing this I made a difference or not, but at least I am doing something I believed in.
That, I think, is very important.