Meet Sarah Mushtaq. She is a proud Pakistani-Canadian. Sarah is a recent graduate of the Odette MBA program, speaks three languages, and is a huge community advocate in issues relating to the rights of women, newcomers, and access to education. She has recently been appointed as the Patient Education & Information Coordinator at Windsor Regional Hospital's Cancer Program. When reflecting on her family's immigration story this is what she had to say:
" I think most people understand the sacrifices immigrants make but in general terms. It's been in recent years that I am really understanding and appreciating of the sacrifices that my parents made to move to North America. My dad grew up on a farm in a village and eventually made it to a US university to complete his Masters and PhD. My mom also has her masters, but grew up in the city. That being said, moving halfway across the world and raising a young family in a different society was a challenge that they never let us see - we thought we had an amazing childhood - but only realize now as adults the things they worried about or struggled with regarding cultural differences or being over protective. I know now that we had an extra level of "protection" so to speak in my parents being "highly skilled." It made me realize how privileged I was, in that we did not struggle as much as many other immigrants did when first arriving to Canada.
Education is also a huge emphasis that my parents placed on us. I think that many children of immigrants feel that pressure to ensure their parents/family are proud of them by attaining as much education as possible. I've heard it from my parents and other aunties/uncles that as an immigrant (or minority or person of colour) you need to be *over* qualified to be a success in another country - you cannot be just average. This is often a driving force in attaining higher education as well.
On a lighter note, it is nice to be able to connect to other children of immigrants no matter what country we are from. We tend to bond over similar experiences in this realm."