Melvin Joseph is a tech and content creation professional from Hyderabad, India. And, he’s on the brink of moving to New Zealand with his family to pursue a Master’s degree.
In this blog, he tells us how PTE Academic helped him to achieve his dreams of studying abroad – and how despite the pandemic delaying his plans, he’s now taking time to enjoy the small things in life.
Planning ahead: from Hyderabad to New Zealand
Hyderabad is located in South India. In 2019, it was recognized by UNESCO as a Creative City of Gastronomy for preserving its rich cuisine – and it’s most famous for its biryani. “It’s a foodie destination, is what I would say,” said Melvin. “And personally, I am a foodie as well.” In his spare time, he enjoys trying out different street foods in the city.
Melvin has also worked for years in the technology industry, including in content creation and content management. But, he wanted to move up in his career. “I have worked for about 10 years now,” he said. “And to grow to that next level to get into management, I had to upskill myself.
For Melvin, that meant getting an MBA abroad.
“That is one of the reasons why I wrote my PTE,” said Melvin. “I’m married and I have a kid. So looking from the family point of view – and a safe place for the kids, and affordability, climate, weather – considering all these things, I chose New Zealand as my destination.”
A quick test with quick results
Melvin was born in Kerala (a state on the southwestern coast of India) and his first language is Malayalam. He’s studied in English since he was a child – so was well-prepared for PTE Academic. But, he did set aside 2-3 hours each day for about two weeks before the test to make sure he was ready.
“Everything was explained in a very simple manner. Extremely understandable.”
So why did he choose PTE Academic?
“My first criteria was that I wanted to complete all the modules in a single day,” said Melvin. “And I have very bad handwriting. So for me, it was important that all the modules were computer-based, and nothing was handwritten on the paper. So these were the two most important factors. And PTE fit the bill, the best.”
This wasn’t the first English language proficiency test Melvin had taken. He’s taken the IELTS before but wasn’t a fan that his speaking test was scheduled for three days after the other modules. And while Melvin felt like sitting IELTS was “intimidating,” he said had a great experience taking the PTE Academic exam.
Melvin said the people at the test center “took down all the details and explained to me each and every step as to what would happen and how is it supposed to happen. What am I supposed to do, what am I not supposed to, do the dos and don’ts? I mean, everything was explained in a very simple manner. Extremely understandable.”
On the day of the test, Melvin left his house at 7:30 am and was home by noon. And while other English proficiency exams advertised they’d send scores within a week or more, Melvin got his PTE Academic results in just a couple of days.
“I needed anything above 56,” he said. “And I got 83.”
Great job Melvin!
More family time while waiting to study abroad
With his results in hand, Melvin began applying to postsecondary institutions in New Zealand. He received offers from The Eastern Institute of Technology and the Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology. And in the end, he decided to study for a Master of Applied Management.
So when will Melvin and his family be moving to New Zealand?
He was supposed to travel in April 2021, but with borders still closed, he’s had to put his plans on hold for the time being. “I have not changed my plans. I have postponed them a bit, but not changed them. I’m doing this so I can step up in my career. If not today, I have to do it tomorrow so I will do that.”
While he could have studied online, he preferred to wait to take classes in person. “I feel the value is better when in a classroom environment, and the focus is better, and the learning is better.”
For now, he’s taking advantage of his time at home this past year and happy he gets to spend more time with his family and young son.
“I used to go to work and come back, while I was doing that, there were very small things that I used to miss. And by working from home, I realized that the small things actually mattered a lot,” said Melvin.
“My son just turned two last December. So that one year being close to my son, watching his every move, every step, seeing him grow, seeing him learn and respond to things” he said. “I am lucky that I was able to spend that kind of time.”