Finally after six long years of slogging and a lot of heartache, pain and sickness suffered alone, joy and withstanding the bitter cold of a Russian winter, my youngest Sarah has graduated with an M.D! She worked hard for it of course even though critics here in Malaysia say that overseas trained graduates, especially Russian doctors are not as good as the locally trained ones! Just because many of them were not pampered government scholars who rely on the government for everything, they are looked down upon. Anyway Sarah had a grand occasion yesterday. They looked splendid in their red and black gowns and black graduation caps with red tassels. The ceremony itself was quite simple - it was presided over by the Rector of the Nizhny Novgorod State Medical Academy (NNSMA) and went without a hitch. It began with the Russian National anthem sung by a really good choir who went on to sing the university song.
The morning started with a grand gesture from the students - they had hired for themselves a limousine to go to the convocation venue- a really huge, white limousine that could take 10 of us easily. So we went to the hall in style! There they quickly dressed in their graduation robes and I noticed that there were a lot of Malaysian parents on hand to help their children. Eighty students - all from foreign countries- would be graduating this year. Almost 80% of the students are Malaysian , the rest coming from some African countries (Kenya, Tanzania and Morrocco). There were also some students from Sri Lanka and one from Indonesia.