PhD Success Story – Physics
Faisal Kakar

Faisal Kakar

Jan 28, 2022
04 mins

GRE Test

My journey to the pursue higher education from abroad began from the time when I started masters despite having many problems. It was nearly impossible to do masters in experimental field with full time job and 5 hour long commute with so many problems. Unluckily, my father died during 1st year of my masters and I faced very tough time to continue my education. Instead of being dispirited I utilized my sufferings to strengthen my passion and build my motivation. My wish of getting higher education from abroad sparked during MS when due to lack of research facilities I was not able to satisfy myself in implementation of my ideas completely in research project. Soon after the completion of MS, I started contacting professors in European countries but got no positive response. The people who go abroad for higher education were like aliens for me. I always wished for pursuing higher education from abroad but never thought that I can also go for that. To me only rich or extra ordinary brilliant people can go abroad for education. Luckily, due to guidance of my friend I came to know about ScholarDen, which was a turning point in my efforts for pursuing higher education from abroad. I got right path to plough my efforts, although I did not had enough time to but I took GRE (296) and TOEFL (82), applied to thirteen schools for Fall 17. Unfortunately, I couldn’t secure single offer except one (without funding for SP 18). I was so disappointed for few months but still determined to try again for Fall 18. This time I decided to apply in more organized way, ScholarDen Founder Faisal Khan guided me to work on my CV, LORs and SOP as well. I registered for the retake of GRE General test,  prepared for the test for 2-3 weeks,  but delayed it twice for some professional problems, in the end I was left with only one and half month with the language test as well. Somehow, I managed to take the both tests, GRE (309) and IELTS (7.0), which was so good for me as literally I prepared for the GRE test (quant only; for verbal I used to attend sessions regularly) consistently for less than 1 months only. Meanwhile with the help of ScholarDen community I worked on my application packet as well and applied for Fall 18. So far, by the grace of Allah, I got six acceptances out of which three are fully funded. It all looks so easy but it wasn’t as I am doing a full time job with 4 to 5 hour daily commute. Preparing for GRE and other tests in the evening after tiresome day and long commute is not an easy job.  I was also working on my research papers side by side for which I had to go to lab for experimentation and discussion.  In such situation it was easy for me to leave all the efforts as I have a good job as well so for most of the people I was like a mad person who is struggling so much despite having good job. But for me, pursuing Ph.D. was never for career; it is my passion for research. I would say it is the motivation behind any effort which matters, career is important but the most important thing is to do what you really want to do.

Few things I would like share about my journey for USA Direct application process. For GRE, my experience is not an exemplary as my routine was so tough and I studied according to my routine. But on the whole for verbal I will say that attending verbal sessions is very important and productive. For quant I followed target test prep for basic concepts, Manhattan 5 lb for practice and worked on error log. Instead of doing lot of practice it is more important to work on error log and take the test with cool mind. For securing fully funded admit, only decent GRE scores are not guarantee of success, the statement of purpose, Letters of Recommendation and CV matters a lot. So, I will suggest work hard on those areas besides GRE. Those who are aspiring for high aims should have strong nerves to bear pressure of failure as well, this is most important. In this whole journey, which is not done yet, there are few people who supported me at each step and without them I could never be able to make this. In short, the Scholar Den community is blessing for future students.

Wish you all the best and remember me in your prayers. Thank you.



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