“If you love your country so much, why are you leaving?”
That’s the provocative question South African student Nicola Soekoe asked in a blog post about her decision to study abroad at Yale University. She wrote:
I would ask myself, “If I am as dedicated to uplifting South Africa and Africa as I say I am, why did I choose to come abroad? If I am so quick to boast about the beautiful South African people to the my American peers, why didn’t I stay there and live with them, surely that would leave me better equipped to one day play a part in uplifting my country?”
Certainly some people back home may see the decision to study abroad as a desertion. Anna wrote yesterday that her Russian friends and family see her differently now that she’s spend time getting an education in the U.S. “I can’t even remember how many times I have been called ‘brain-washed,’” she lamented.
But when we asked Nicola’s question on Facebook, the response was overwhelming: you didn’t see studying abroad as a rejection at all.
“Leaving is simply a quest to get a better education to make one more equipped to develop their country,” wrote Angel on our Facebook page.