There is no dearth of good news to feel positive and spread cheers amid the COVID19 pandemic. While the US is busy securing jobs for Americans and India is teeming with thousands of new positive cases every day, a poor farmer’s son is all set to study at New York’s Cornell University from September 2020. Hailing from a humble and marginal background in a small village of Uttar Pradesh, 18-year-old Anurag Tiwari took the nation aback by securing a 100% scholarship from one of the Ivy League universities in the United States.
A native of UP’s Lakhimpur Kheri, Anurag not only made his dream of studying overseas come true but also scored a whopping 98.2% in the CBSE Class XII exams. He became a blue-eyed boy of not just his village, but the entire country. Since the global health emergency has caused many foreign universities to go online, he is eagerly waiting for virtual classes to be held by New York’s Cornell University.
Anurag Tiwari’s journey from rural India to New York had been a roller-coaster ride. To appreciate his perseverance, dedication and hard work, one must look back. His village saw the first electric light after a few years of the launch of 4G technology in India in 2012. Far from the modern trappings of civilization, his village could not hold him back from being discovered. In the CBSE Class XII exams, he scored 100 in history and economics, 99 in political science, 97 in English, and 95 in mathematics.
A student of humanities, Anurag will be majoring in economics and mathematics at Cornell University. His decision to study humanities subjected him to taunts in the village. It happened all because of gender inequality ingrained in every walk of life, from the distribution of household responsibilities to the advertising of fairness products. “My decision to study humanities was questioned by many who felt it was not suitable for boys,” Times of India quoted him saying.
“Motivation to dream big came from my hard-working parents and three elder sisters who wished world-class education for me,” said Anurag. He attended a primary school in the village till 5th grade. A turning point came his way to help him make it big in life when he was through the entrance test for admission to VidyaGyan, a leading residential school that cherry-picks economically disadvantaged bright students from the rural backwaters of Uttar Pradesh.
A proud son of farmer Kamlapati Tiwari and homemaker Sangeeta Tiwari, Anurag started taking lessons for SAT while studying in Class XI. He achieved a score of 1370 out of 1600 in SAT. Impressed by his merit, his teachers helped him try for Ivy League colleges as he aspired to pursue liberal arts. Coupled with the SAT score, his board exam results catapulted him to Cornell University. He applied to the university in New York as an ‘Early Decision Applicant’.
When Anurag left for the residential school, his parents feared that he might not come back home and take up farming. Hence, it was not easy for him to cross the threshold and take steps towards fulfilling his dream. “I thought of making my son successful, but today he has made me a successful father,” said Anurag’s proud father; and that is the biggest achievement for Anurag.
Travel Beats, a subsidiary of Indian Eagle, promotes achievements of young Indians through a series of success stories that many NRIs can relate to. Indian Eagle, a most trusted travel-booking partner of Indians in USA, makes sure students, senior citizens and others travel on cheapest flights to and from India. Subscribe to our free newsletter for the latest community, visa, immigration, passport and travel news.