That was a sunshiny day in May, 2013, when my mother asked me: “Daughter, do you want to go to America? I remember one time you told me you would like to study overseas. Do you still want to do that? You can have a wonderful future in America.” I would be the first member in my big family to have the chance to study overseas. This might be a good opportunity in my life, but this also would involve a lot of pressure and risk. My family, my relatives, and my friends gave me advice: some said I should go, and some told me not to do it. “Should I keep studying in Viet Nam or go to America?” I asked myself several times, and I was so confused.
If I kept studying in Viet Nam, I could still succeed without changing, and I could also have all of my important things with me. Viet Nam is my country where I was born and where I grew up. My country is my great love, and of course, I would not have any difficulty in continuing my life in Viet Nam. Vietnamese education in high school is at a higher standard than the same grades in American education, and my school is one of the best schools in Viet Nam. “Should I leave this super good school to go to a strange school that I know nothing about?” I asked myself this question every day after school toward the end of the school year. If I stayed, I could also continue learning advanced Mathematics. I am addicted to studying, especially about subjects that are challenging and involve logic, for example, math. When my mother saw me spend most of my holidays solving Algebra problems from morning till twelve o’clock at night, she used to grumble at me: “Are you going to marry Math in the future? Why do you study it all the time?” Even though I am not a genius at math, how could I live without it? However, the most important reason to stay in Viet Nam is that I would miss my family and my friends. I never thought that someday I would have to live without them by my side. I had only attended this high school with my friends for ten months, but I could already feel my great love for them. We had spent our most beautiful times together, our teenage years. The sadness in my mother’s eyes and the sighs of my father when they were looking at me broke my heart. Every time I would imagine the day I would have to leave these people, I was not brave enough to go on.
Studying in Viet Nam, however, would not be the best for my future. The higher education makes Vietnamese students study too much. If one student wants to be at the top of his class, it takes him twenty four hours a day and seven days a week to achieve this goal, unless he is a genius. I did not have time to play and enjoy my life. In addition, the program contains a lot of unnecessary knowledge that will not help students in higher classes or in their lives. For example, we review the same material over and over as well as learning new concepts. My friends and I were dying because of the workload. We were so tired. A better school meant we had to learn a harder program, especially in the Mathematic-major. Some parts of the program, however, seemed unnecessary, outdated, and useless for our daily lives. None of the Vietnamese students remember this after graduation and the university entrance exams. Traditional thinking that studying university is the only way to success. There are many students that have plans that are more suitable for them than studying at university but their parents do not allow them to do this. I used to want to travel around the world or join a charity group to help unfortunate people after graduating high school. I did not want to go to university immediately, but my parents were very upset about my “crazy” thought. We argued for a long time about this. Most of the Vietnamese universities do not have as high a quality of education as other countries, but I cannot have a good job if I do not have a diploma from good university. I was not sure though that I could attend a good university. It is