Peshawar to Scottsdale – The Journey of Hope

Chicago O'Hare International Airport

Excitement – Enjoyment

Do you want to know how much time does it take to reach Scottsdale, Arizona from Peshawar, Pakistan? Then you are in the right place. I am writing about my journey from Peshawar to Scottsdale. I applied for the CCIP Scholarship last November. I luckily was selected for the program. I received my visa from US embassy in June. My journey started July 14, 2016 at 6:00 pm from Peshawar. I was travelling with my friend Mr. Shafat Ullah who was also selected for the same program. I traveled to Islamabad International Airport. On our way to Islamabad we stayed at many spots, just to make our journey an awesome memory. I reached Islamabad Airport at 1:00 am. When I was walking through the boarding area, I was physically screened by security personnel. Then I waited in the departure lounge for the plane. It was raining and due to zero visibility, the flight was delayed. I got onto the plane at 5:00 am. The plane took off and moved into the clouds in just a few minutes. The plane was flying up in the air across the Arab sea. The plane landed at Abu Dhabi Airport at 6:00 a.m. local time.


When I reached Abu Dhabi airport, I received the message from Etihad Airways crew member that the flight from Abu Dhabi to Los Angeles is cancelled. You are going to Chicago now in 14 hours. Then, I got to another plane to reach Chicago. It was a long flight. The Plane was flying in the air, we could see clouds below the plane. The air hostess came toward me to ask whether I needed something for breakfast or not. I said; not yet because I wanted to enjoy the horizon. There were many Pakistani travelers around me in the plane. I enjoyed talking to them. It was a very nice journey. After reaching Chicago, I took another flight and traveled to Phoenix, where I was warmly welcomed by the host Al Potter and coordinator Madam Megan O Young. Then I was accompanied by my host from the airport to Scottsdale by road, and I reached the host home safely. It was a 59-hour journey from Peshawar to Scottsdale. I enjoyed a lot, tasted new food which I had never tasted before, met some people from other countries and took photos with them.

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Qasim is an accounting and auditing professional in Pakistan, where he graduated from University of Peshawar with a degree in Commerce, majoring in Accounting. Qasim came to Arizona at the invitation of the U.S. Department of State in their Community College Initiative Program. This program is funded by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and administered by Northern Virginia Community College as a member of the Community College Consortium. Qasim has more than four years experience in the social sector, specifically, working in donor-funded projects with various international organizations and UN agencies like the World Food Program, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and National Education Foundation of Pakistan, among others. He independently began operations of a small business incubator. Qasim's dream is to become a social entrepreneur and serve his country internationally and domestically.


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