Hindustan Times (Tuesday, May 01, 2012): Kunti is the second youngest child among eight sib- lings. Her father is bedridden and her mother is a housewife. She lives in a semi-construct- ed house in Digdiga Gaon (a slum in Vishal Khand 2) and belongs to a Dalit family. But none of this has stopped her from going to a community col- lege in the US on a one-year scholarship.
Meet 19 year-old Kunti Rawat who is currently preparing for her BA third year exams from IGNOU and is also working with a local NGO. Kunti has been selected in the Community College Initiative Program run by the US government’s bureau of educational and cultural affairs. The pro- gramme provides opportuni- ties to individuals from developing countries to acquire leadership and pro- fessional skills and get profi- ciency in English language while studying at a commu- nity college in the US. After spending an academic year there, Kunti will get a certifi- cate in her chosen field of study.
Talking about the scholar- ship, Kunti said, “Had some- one come and told me that I would be going to the US for a year when I joined Prerna Girls School in class 7, I would have never believed him. Sometimes we end up achieving something we thought was impossible.”
Principal of Prerna School Rakhi Panjwani said, “We run a school for underprivi- leged girls. When we accept- ed Kunti in our school, I knew straightaway that she was a special talent. Kunti went on to top class 8, 10 and then again she emerged the batch topper in class 12 as well.” However, beneath all the happiness there is a bit of apprehension. “I don’t know whether my mother will approve of this. She loves me too much to let me out of her sight for a year. I am still thinking about how to break the news to her,” Kunti added. Her elder brother and Kunti are the only two bread- winners in the family.
Kunti hopes she can live up to the faith people have in her. “I hope I perform well at the community college and make my teachers here and parents proud of me,” she added.
Talking about her future plans, Kunti said, “I want to come back and work for underprivileged girls like me.”