Back in 1995, my parents had to stretch really hard to manage Rs.3000 per year for my school fee. The easier option was to pull me out of the CBSE School and settle for the government school nearby. But my dad chose the tougher option. Year after year I still remember those poignant arguments between my parents about the change of school during the fag end of every academic year, so that they could save whatever little they could for my college fees. My dad prevailed over those tough times.
I was fortunate to receive full scholarship for 3 consecutive years (10th to 12th) from the school management and I managed to complete my school in flying colors. With one foot into the hallowed turf of BITS Pilani, the bigger question was, “How can we afford the tuition fees that are more than 10 times my school fees?” We received financial support from close family members and friends. Some other family members chipped in necessities like new dresses and winter clothing. We somehow managed the expenses for the first two years. Halfway through my second year, my father lost his job. This complicated the situation and we had no clue on what to do. There was a serious doubt if I would be able to continue my course at BITS. Education Loans were not very common then and we had no one to guide us on that. That’s when we heard about FFE through a common family friend. We immediately met the facilitator and put forth our case. After few weeks of background verification, we heard back from FFE. I was really fortunate to receive the entire annual tuition fee as scholarship for my 3rd and 4th years.
The scholarship from FFE was an absolutely critical lifeline without which I would not have completed my engineering. I am deeply indebted to FFE and my facilitator for supporting me during one of the toughest times. I owe a lot to FFE for the confidence they had in me. It’s my payback time now and I am glad that I have been able to contribute in my own little way with regular donations ever since I graduated in 2004. I am fortunate and proud to be associated with the wonderful work that FFE has been doing in transforming the lives of bright and needy students.