Colombo Telegraph

My SAITM Story

By Chapani Radhika Kandanaarachchi

Chapani Radhika Kandanaarachchi

Living in a society where more and more people are misled everyday by the false information being spread, I wish not to remain silent anymore.

I am a third-year medical student following my undergraduate degree at SAITM and a former student of Royal Institute international school, Nugegoda.

In the year of 2014, I entered SAITM with the entry qualifications of 4A*s for my Cambridge A Level examination, also having received the Best in Sri Lanka awards for my Cambridge O level (2012), and Cambridge AS Level (2013) results. Everyone who has known me, my parents, teachers, relatives as well as my friends, are aware of the amount of effort and passion I have towards what I do and it still, onto this day remain unceased.

Due to astounding amounts of bogus information being spread in the country by various parties, the students of SAITM are labelled as a bunch of underqualified, untalented and aimless individuals who have no right whatsoever to follow their career in medicine. For people like us, who have spent our whole lives focusing on nothing but our future goals, is it morally right to mentally torment us with such accusations? Our country stands out from all other prestigious and well developed nations in this world as free education is provided to her children without any discrimination. However, it is a well-known fact that the state universities ONLY enroll students passing out from Sri Lankan government schools. Therefore, for individuals who pass out from international schools, sometimes with better results than the ones already enrolled in government universities, do they not deserve a bright future?

I had countless opportunities to travel abroad and follow my degree in medicine, even at a cheaper cost, but I decided NOT to. It is not a hidden fact, that the parents of the foreign students are worried sick as to what might become of their children after sending them off to a completely new land, where there is no known kin and they have to learn foreign languages from the scratch even to communicate with the people. So, is it not wise that I decided to stay in my MOTHER COUNTRY, pay money to my own country, speak to my patients in my mother language, to go home every day knowing my parents will always be there to love and support me and always be under their direct protection?

Nothing ever starts perfect, everything grows to perfection only with time and effort. SAITM is undoubtedly a place that opened doors for many talented and innocent children in Sri Lanka, and it will one day contribute greatly to the education system of the country, if enough opportunities are given. Therefore, isn’t holding hands with us to improve any shortcomings the right thing to do now, rather than trying to destroy the futures of so many young, gifted individuals? We are children who have the potential to contribute to the well-being of our nation and children who can one day blossom to be great doctors, just like any other graduate from state faculties. So why not give us a chance to grow? If the citizens of our own mother land are trying to drag us down, who should we really TRUST?

We fear no one who tries to block our future road because we ourselves know, more than anyone, how much effort and time we are dedicating to our education and HOW MUCH WE DESERVE IT. Therefore, before believing all the biased stories spread in the social media today, solely for their personal benefit, jealousy and utter joblessness, I request everyone to seek the TRUTH behind all this. We were born in this country, we are PROUD CITIZENS who TRULY LOVE our country and we have EVERY RIGHT to remain in this country and follow our ambition.

Thank you.

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