My name is Aliha Ansari. I belong to Uttar Pradesh and I have spent most of my life in Delhi. I come from a Muslim family who have been living in ghettos since years and could not prioritize education because of the cultural and socioeconomic indifference experienced by our communities. I have recently graduated from Jamia Millia Islamia with a B.A. Economics (Honors) degree being the first person in my family to attend and graduate from a university. I have been accepted into an M.Sc. program in International Financial Management at Queen Mary University of London, commencing from September 2021 (offer letter attached).
During my bachelors, I have mentored many students from rural areas in and around my hometown to support them in leveraging their access to resources required for higher education and making them aware about various government schemes. I also worked with Enactus to provide a sustainable business model to hundreds of rickshaw pullers and unemployed women of our neighbourhood slum. In addition, I have work experience with two advertising firms as a business development associate and as a marketing team member.
Motivation and Purpose
Coming from a patriarchal setup, like almost everyone in our region, my family would love to see me as a family person rather than a career oriented one. As grateful as I am for the things my parents have done so far but still I had to lose a lot of opportunities due to that but this is something I don't want to give up without trying all the means. I do not blame them either, they have been living in the same patriarchal setup like I have and couldn't outgrow it.
I have always been enthusiastic to learn, to explore and to experience. Whether it is because of critical or analytical thinking capabilities, understanding facts and figures have come naturally to me. Finance as a subject as well as a social topic has been very intriguing to me. During the lockdown in 2020 I stayed in my hometown for a very long period, it was then that I realised how women from marginalised communities suffer because of their total dependence on men. And even the women who do earn do not have proper access to their finances, they rely on their male counterparts for their financial decisions. We live in a patriarchal setup where women have been limited to certain roles only. And from observing women of my own family I have realised how important financial independence is.
With this course I would get to study the markets and financial institutions, corporate finance and project management which will enhance my cognitive skills in relation to the analysis, synthesis and critical evaluation of the knowledge of financial management. On coming back to my country, I plan to set up a financial aid institution for rural women where I'll support them in making sustainable business models for themselves. Additionally, I want to provide them with financial solutions and help navigate the government's finance related schemes through which they can sustain themselves without depending on anyone. I also want to build a platform where women can learn to invest, grow and use their money in their own way by simplifying all the investment ideas so that they do not have to hesitate in making their investment decisions on their own.
I had initially hoped to secure a scholarship or a student loan that could cover all my expenses in order to pursue my M.Sc. but both these options have become unviable (as of June 28th, 2021). As my family is not very supportive about my higher education, crowdfunding seems to be the last option. The total tuition fee for the M.Sc. International Financial Management is GBP 23,950 (INR 24,66,850) out of which I have already arranged INR 5,60,000 through my savings.
The living costs stand at almost GBP 15,000 (INR 1,545,000). I plan to work while studying to pay off the living costs like most of the students, while I am still trying to raise a loan. I will not be able to arrange the rest of the tuition fee (INR 19,00,000) myself which I have to show in my account by the end of July. I have attached the offer letter with this statement below for you to see.
Why do I not have any viable options?
I had applied for 3 scholarships but did not receive any positive response from them and as for the loans I had applied for non-collateral loans but I did not fulfill their conditions. To avail any secure loan I needed to have a collateral of upto 40% more value than the fee which I do not have.
In these unprecedented times, the amount I'm trying to raise seems very big but even if you want to give it on a lending basis I'll make sure to return it when I start to earn. And in future I plan to do the same by giving financial aid for the students who are struggling to finance their studies. So that no aspiring candidate has to give up on their dreams due to familial or financial reasons. I understand that the times are hard and every person is having their own struggle. But even a little contribution could lead me to my independence and a brighter future.
The fields of Economics, Finance and Management are crucial in our society and have been very close to my heart. I have always wanted to support and educate people, especially women, particularly on matters of financial inclusion and independence. This opportunity will help me to study and interact with people from all over the world, broaden my horizons, and expand my knowledge more. Your donations would be extremely helpful, and will help me to fulfill my aspirations. Thank you in advance.
If there are any questions or queries that you have, kindly contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also transfer money directly to my bank A/C.
Acc no. 38863912913
Ifsc code: SBIN0050489
Name- Aliha Ansari
Bank - State Bank of India