Ain Nadhirah shares her heartfelt journey after being rejected twice

By Azimah Zainal

GOMBAK, 17 March 2022: A graduate of Bachelor of Human Sciences in Psychology with Honours had the audience’ emotions moved to tears with her valedictorian speech at the 10th session of 36th IIUM Convocation Ceremony yesterday (Wednesday) afternoon.

Nurulain Nadhirah Binti Abdul Muen, recipient of Budi Award (Kulliyyah level award), proved her perseverance to become a student of IIUM after she was turned down twice from admission.

Instead of backing down upon two rejections, Ain had strived forward towards her dream for the third time with much determination. She did not concede defeat as the word ‘giving up’ is not in her dictionary.

As she shared her journey, Ain believed that taking risks and facing own fears along the path is what developed her as an individual.

“Do not be afraid of fears because it sharpens you, it challenges you, it makes you stronger, and if you run away from fears, you also run away from the opportunity to be your best possible self,” she stressed. 

Her perseverance can also be seen in her one-year effort of building a club from scratch. After countless rejections to the proposal which was only approved after a year, filled with frustrations and hard work, she was able to push the agenda forward as the president of UNESCO IIUM Club, along with her team.

As the youngest of the eight siblings, Ain obtained the inspiration to further her studies in IIUM from three of her older siblings who are also the alumni of this ‘Garden of Knowledge and Virtue’.

Nurulain Nadhirah with her mother at the 36th IIUM Convocation Ceremony yesterday

A narrated conversation of Ain with her mother had filled the entire IIUM Culture Centre (ICC) Hall with sounds of sobs from parents and her fellow graduates.

A few years back, her mother once asked about the significance of some parents sitting at the bottom front row of the Hall instead of upstairs and Ain answered that it was perhaps due to the fact that their children were on Dean’s list award.

“Ain, later on you have to study very hard. I also want to feel how it is to sit down there,” Ain narrated her mother’s wish.

With teary eyes and shaky voice, Ain continued, “Mom, today I have granted your wish to sit at that designated seat for parents of high achieving students”.

“Mom, thank you for all your efforts, sacrifices, and hard work in taking care of eight children alone by yourself after the late father passed away. Terima kasih Mak, Ain sayang Mak,” she added.

Ain expressed her gratitude towards her mother as she believed that her ability to stand tall on this stage is all due to the prayers made by her beloved mother.

Although she hoped for her late father to be celebrating her big day together, Ain realised that “deep down in my heart I know I have made him proud. Abah will forever be my number one hero”. ***

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