International opportunities have always been a charisma. People are always looking for scholarships & fellowships to gain international and most importantly US experience. I also wanted to get similar experience but was not too keen. Once my brother, who was trying different opportunities came across a website of Atlas Corps. He studied the website and started applying. He also wanted me to apply. So, we started together. It was back in 2013, Atlas Corps had a different application process. The first step was an online application, second step online test and the third and last step was interview with Atlas Corps.

We started the application with enthusiasm.  I started writing about my skills, wrote a biography and completed the application. After a month or so, both of us got an email of application approval, we scaled the first hurdle! What a sweet relief it was! We were allotted slots for online written test on different dates. We started more research along our professional lines. We took the tests and optimistically crossed our fingers for positive results.

Unfortunately, due to unprecedented reasons, I couldn’t make it to interview, while my brother was called for an interview. I was disappointed, but I was happy with my job and just carried on. Regrettably, my brother was not selected, and it was his last chance to apply.

Anyways, time passed I got a better job. I was so busy & focused on my job & accomplishments that I absolutely forgot about any scholarship or fellowship. In July 2018 my project ended, and I started looking for new jobs. Just going through my emails, I came across an email from Atlas Corps that my application was pending. I went- oh yes, I once did something here.

I started my application again. Now they had a different process, short application, long application and more steps. So, in August 2018 I started my application again by retrieving my password & login. Filled out the short application with basic information. In December, my short application was approved and was asked to start with my long application. Now my excitement had inched a notch higher. I submitted the long application in Jan 2019. Amazingly My application was accepted and I got an interview call…Wowww!!.

My interview was scheduled for March 2019 at 9:00pm. Excitedly, preparations kicked in, ensured to cross my T’s and dots my I’s, laptop, speaker mic check etc. The interview was for 30 minutes, conducted by an Atlas Corps representative.  I was to be notified in 4-8 weeks about the result. Since I was satisfied with my interview accordingly, my hopes were positive.

As with life, you keep moving, I secured a job offer from one of the known French medical organizations. It was an attractive job. I accepted the offer as there was no response from Atlas Corps even after 12 weeks. This time I was disappointed and wrote a follow-up email to Atlas Corps.

Alas! Atlas Corps never got my interview notes. I was shocked and least expecting of this. My chances were decreasing. I wrote an email again and expressed my disappointment.

Atlas Corps was kind enough & they scheduled another interview in July, 2019. The only slot available was ta 3:00am due to huge time difference of Pakistan & US. Anyhow, I got ready in the middle of night and answered all the questions.  Grateful to God, it went well. Two weeks after it I got the email that my application was accepted, and my profile was circulated to host organizations.

Hope raised again, time was passing by and I was anxiously waiting. One rainy evening when I was out with my brother discussing hopes and expectations, I got a WhatsApp text from one of Atlas Corps staff. Saying I was yet to respond to their email as my profile had been accepted by the host organization and who wanted an interview with me. Superb, I got super excited, but unfortunately, I didn’t get any of the email. So, after series of test mails, I finally got an email and confirmed my interview with host organization. After a successful interview and assessment, I was FINALLY SELECTED, and a new journey began.!! A journey full of optimism I look to embracing the whole nine yards! Thanks to the hope I kept alive, mother luck and undeterred determination.