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I am originally from Burma (also called Myanmar) and also an Ethnic Karen, one of the very recent immigrants in Minnesota and in many other countries all over the world.While living in a refugee camp in Thailand, I was hoping for a better life, but I didn’t have a choice or a chance.The following is one of two winning essays composed for the 2012 The Mary Cone Barrie Scholarship.
My last hope is one day I would like to become a useful resource person in my Karen community as a professional in education.
My fellow ethnic Karen has been fleeing war and became refugees for many decades. Many children did not have educational opportunities because of life they had to go through.
I was once like these children and was not happy with my life.
Therefore, I hope to be able to help make a difference in these children life so that their dream may come true as other children in the world.
My interest in teaching began while I was teaching as a non-licensed teacher for almost two years at a diverse post-secondary school in the refugee camp.
However, I felt bad for I was not able to provide my students with the best quality education because I was not well-trained but given the job due to community’s need.Sometimes I blamed myself because I felt envious of the world and people that had more opportunities.Living in the camp for 13 years, I thought I was never going to be able to continue my education, and I had so little hope when I thought about my future.My name is Moon Soe, and I am a junior student at Metropolitan State University, in Saint Paul, Minnesota, pursuing a degree in secondary mathematics education.This spring 2012, I am taking four classes at the indicated institute above while also working full-time during weekdays.For me, my education journey began at age five in first school, and ended aged twenty-three after graduation from university with a degree in English Literature.Although the levels of academia and specific challenges became bigger and more complicated as my educational journey progressed, it would be fair to say that the ways in which I dealt with each challenge as it came my way remained relatively similar.However, I am really happy now that I could start to dream about my future in real life and not a daydream anymore.Working fulltime and going to school fulltime might be a little difficult, but in order to finance my family without giving up on my dream, I motivate myself everyday to have enough energy.I looked up for supports from every resource I could get from college, and surprisingly I made it through smoothly for the last three years.I feel so grateful and honored that I am going to be the first generation in my family ancestry who is graduating from college.