After I resigned, approximately a year ago, I had taken a few part time jobs around Klang Valley. This time around I do not get to choose my students. I am teaching students from all kind of races and also from different background. I even have foreigners in my class now. It is really a good way to improve my conversation in English.

Since I am teaching at private universities, I am not that close with the students like I used to be before. Maybe because I always thought that they are from well to do families and can survive on their own. I am still in touch with some of them, but not as many as I have with students from my previous university.

However, just recently, I am 'disturbed' again with the story from one of my students at a private college. From the start, I noticed that they were only 3 students who seemed interested to learn in that class. One of them is a boy, who was quite playful at the start. He questioned my qualifications and asked whether I am indeed, a lawyer. He also likes to joke around in class with his friends, distracting other students while I was teaching.

One day, I told him, in front of everybody, "You know, I have 12 years of experience in teaching, I would know if a student is smart or otherwise. You are smart, but you are also lazy and playful. One day you will realize that education is important, and let just hope it will not be too late then for you to change". He just smiled meekly at me.

It is time to self-reflect.
Picture credit to Google.

After that, I noticed that he started to distance himself from the other boys who like to make noises in class. He chose to sit in front and had his eyes glued to the front. When it was time to form groups for tutorials, he purposely joined a group with girls in that group. Initially I thought, he did that so he could pass all the work to the girls, but later on I discovered that he joined the group so that he could ensure the job given would be done, with good teamwork. And this would not have happened should he joined the other boys. 

I noticed that he got 14/20 for his test. So one day, I asked him, "What did you get for your SPM?" I was surprised when he replied, "4A Madam". "Oh my God, why didn't you apply to study at the public university?" He smiled. Maybe because he did not want to elaborate the story of his life in front of others.

During the last class, I get the chance to talk to him personally. He told me that he actually wanted to study engineering and was even offered a place at a prestigious public university. Unfortunately, his father told him to come to this private college because the fees can be deducted straight from his (the father) EPF. If he was to register at the public university, he would need around RM 2K for the fees. An amount that his father could not give, because there are also other children he has to take care off. His father even told him to do well, because after this it would be his duty to support his other siblings to study. 

I stared at him. Thinking about the burden he has on his shoulder, for someone who did not even reach the age to vote yet. It is bad enough that he did not get to study what he wanted, and now he was told that he already has a duty to support his siblings, even before he completed his study.

After listening to his story, I had a hard time digesting it. Mr H would know, because then I will be quiet for a few days. I started to self-reflect, thanking Allah for the stardust He had showered me with. I never had any financial problem studying for my Degree. Though the course I took (law), was not my first choice, my parents supported me all the way, financially I mean. I never had to work to pay for my fees. Even when I did my LL.B (Hons) and did not get any financial assistance from PTPTN, my father was determined to support me just so that I could reach the end. 

Stardust, pouring on me.
Picture credit to Google.

And my parents had never asked me to support my siblings. I was never told to assume any responsibility after graduating. All I had to do was to graduate. That's all. And I did. 

It is thing like this that I had always take for granted. Ignoring the stardust, and keep focusing on the storm. Oh Allah, please forgive me for I have sinned. 

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