“US education…The liberty in making choices based on your interests, passion and principles, with just guidance and advice instead of pressure from those around you.”

Shanggar is currently a rising senior at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona, Florida. He is pursuing a major in Aerospace Engineering specialized in Aeronautics and also minoring in Math, Psychology and International Relations. Shanggar just completed an internship with Gartner and is now part of the Teach for Malaysia Support Corp. He also recently started nation building projects such as Project 2063, and a joint collaboration effort between top 50 Malaysian corporate companies known as “The Harimau Project”.

Chelsea fans out there, behold! Shanggar is a die hard Chelsea fan in which he flew to London just to watch them play in their stadium, Stamford Bridge. He also aspires to be a filmmaker someday, has written a script to titled “Black December” about 4 years ago and hopes that it would someday make it to the silver screen!

Here’s what Shanggar has to say about his experience in the US:

Why did you choose to study in the US and why should students consider the option of studying in the US?

For me, it was simple enough because I had chosen the course I wish to pursue and I knew that US would be the best place for that studies. Let’s just say that everyone who wishes to major in Aerospace Engineering will first come across Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, since it’s arguably the biggest school for that studies not only in the States, but also in the world.

I believe that students should consider studying in US, simply for the experience. It’s like a whole different world there, with so many distinctive cultures all around the country. The people that you meet throughout your years in university will give you the realization of how big and diverse this world really is, and the experience would certainly widen your perspective and leave you with a different way of thinking for the rest of your lives.

College of Aviation at Embry-Riddle

What about your US education do you value most?

The liberty in making choices based on your interests, passion and principles, with just guidance and advice instead of pressure from those around you.

List some of the crazy and exciting things you have done in college or in general in the US:

I skydived! This is certainly something I would have never gotten an approval from my parents had I wanted to do it in Malaysia. But I went for it over there, and only told my family about it afterwards! Besides that, I cycled around the entire city throughout the night along with a couple of friends, and we even crossed the ghetto area which is reported to have had drug dealing business. A couple of days later, we read the news that the mafia gang there were involved in a shootout with the cops and some of them died on the scene. We were gob smacked!

Shanggar Skydiving!

A piece of advice you would give to someone looking to further his/her studies abroad…

Be open and just embrace the different cultures that you come across. Keep the friends you’re comfortable with close to you, but just ensure that you don’t limit yourself to that. Be proactive and take the trouble to make new friends from different parts of the world, and also be open to learn their language and culture while you’re at it.  If things don’t go too well, don’t stress yourself. At the end of the day, what really matters is the experience you gain. It’ll certainly be nice if you have amazing stories to share with others back home, and maybe even to your kids someday. The key is to just enjoy and live your life to the fullest, and hopefully someday you can inspire others.