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Teaching Excellence & Achievement (TEA) USA Fellowship.

Teaching Excellence & Achievement (TEA) program. Visiting Montgomery Executive Airport United States of America (USA) in Oct 2019.

Teaching Excellence & Achievement (TEA) USA Fellowship.

Think Big

"If you can dream it, you can do it".

The real journey began on Oct 13-2019 when I flew to USA and the credit goes to GBHS Khadehro.

(From March 06-2020 to Nov 28-2020)

I have been serving as an HST (High School Teacher) @ GBHS Khadehro Taluka Talhar District Badin, Sindh. I have been teaching English for last one decade. I applied for the very first time for Teaching Excellence & Achievement program (TEA) in 2017, then 2018 and finally in 2019.

TEA is basically a cultural exchange program for 6 weeks only. It's fully funded program for teachers only. (Not for SSs, Lecturers and PSTs, but only JSTs and HSTs)

In 2019 Luckily I received an email for shortlisting out of thousands of applications. TEA 2019 was under the supervision of Evolution (an organization working for English teachers and US Funded programs in Pakistan under the umbrella of U.S Embassy Islamabad).

They called me to be ready for the following milestones.

1. Shortlisting email or text message

2. Telephonic interview

3. Orientation @ Avari Towers (Hotel) Karachi.

4. Face to Face interview (with consulate officials)

5. Visa Interview

6. Pre-Departure orientation (PDO) @ Islamabad (if selected)

I was really excited and anxious to pass all the milestones. I had gone through the entire process in 2017 so I was relax and easy. Well the process began with shortlisting email and telephonic interview, the evolution shared me schedule of the program by email.

The room was booked for two (male participants) @ Avari towers. I am so thankful to Mr. Nihal Khan (from Matiari District, Sindh) who accompanied me for couple of days. Well, orientation session plays a vital role for your selection. The US officials with their team take down your active participation & your responses to the speaker. Sir Jerry Frank (Jerrold Frank) and Susan Ross (The officials of USA Embassy @ Karachi) started the orientation session with greetings. (Love you Jerry and Susan). After orientation session we had lunch with both officials @ Avari Towers.

When Face to face interview was being conducted, the only thing that supported me was "American English Live series and Massive Open Online Course (MOOCs), the interviewer checked my application form and added that you have completed 4 A.E Live series and 3 MOOCs, it means you're aware of the American Educational System and culture, he asked about 10 questions, I replied with full confidence, you may leave now Mr. Kumar, the interviewer added, I left the room and cheered in the hotel because I was sure to be on board after 3 years' efforts.

After couple of weeks they emailed me visa interview schedule @ US Embassy Karachi. I was very excited and waiting to be interviewed because I was dreaming visiting US Embassy since 2017. (I have also visited UK Embassy). Well, after a short period they requested me to send them my passport to check/verify my background including family members.

July 18-2019, the day that changed my life, the day I can't forget, the everlasting day of my life, on this day Evolution emailed me like this:

"Congratulations Mr. Kumar, you have been confirmed to be on board, you can visit USA now if you complete all the said requirements". I was really happy, I shared this good news with my father first because my father had a dream, he wished to see his offspring to visit any international country to raise his social status and finally I did it.

I applied for N.O.C (from secretary E&L Sindh), I am so grateful to all the friends who helped me to get N.O.C. I shared my N.O.C to Evolution on Oct-01-2020 because Oct 13 was confirmed flight to USA. I received e-tickets from Karachi to Islamabad, Islamabad to Abu Dhabi and Abu Dhabi to Washington.

We visited Washington D.C for a week. White House, Capitol Building, State department office, War memorial, George Washington University, Metro station and Pakistani Embassy. In Pakistani Embassy I found a Sindhi official "Abdul Wahab Nizamani form Tando Allahyar, when I spoke to him in Sindhi, he felt very happy. Mr. Nizamani hosted us with an hour meeting and refreshment. I presented him Sindhi traditional icon "Ajrak", he was very pleased.

We also met with secretary Education Virginia Mr. Atif Qerni, he was from Karachi, we had an hour meeting and lunch with Atif sir.

We also celebrated the biggest event of Hindu community "DIWALI" @ VT university. I am also grateful to all my fellows who surprised me with "DIWALI" celebration at our hotel.

VT had organized an event regarding Miss Virginia, we attended that event and had a nice chit chat with Miss Virginia (Camile Shreir), I presented her "Ajrak", now a days she is Miss America.

We missed Pakistani food so we visited "Halal Guys" a restaurant in D.C. This restaurant has a lovely and generous background.

We learned and enjoyed a lot at Virginia Tech University USA. American make the most of technology, they are committed to their job, they are committed to time, they don't compromise on time, they value their time, work and people (no doubt situation varies from state to state).


Courtesy form USA:

I am so grateful to Dr. Wafa Al Daily, Liya Huang, Shufang Luo, Ruby Elkumaran, Thomas Hale and Alice Dong for their wonderful mentor ship and guidance.

Thanks Dr. Wafa and entire team for your love and care and no doubt Dr. Ruby for the lovely dinner.

Our international mentors:

Brooke Mullins, Rebecca Raine, Caryn Curoso, Donna Fogelsong and Douglas Asante.

Our national mentors:

from Sindh. Aisha Amanullah, Sidrah Niaz, Ikram Baig & Varisha Atiq.

Courtesy from Pakistan:

Sindh: Imran Shah, Aisha Tariq & Mehdia Mehmood.

Punjab: Rizwan Ilyas, Nadeem Jatt, Qamar Rasheed, Rahil Bhatti, Nosheen Arif, Aisha Malik, Azka Kiran, Muhammad Khuram, Humaira Zafar, Shakeel John, Mazhar Pasha, Attiya Khaliq & Tayyaba Javed.

KPK: Anwaar Ali Shah, Maria Nazir, Gulshan, Maimoona & Samiullah Khan.

Balochistan: Ehsan Khan, Shazia Nazar, Ghazala Baloch & Mahjabeen Baloch.

AJK: Muhammad Khursheed.

GB: Yahya Haider.

Some other friends:

Yousaf Khan, Deepak Kumar, Ashok Kumar, Riffat Mustafa, Nahida Kiran, Dawood Achakzai, Saqib Asad, Rauf Shah & Farman Shah.

Love you all TEA fellows and mentors.


Raj Kumar Lohana

Tando Bago, Badin, Sindh.

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