Zara Amjad: From first-day jitters to confident leader | Aga Khan Academies

Zara Amjad: From first-day jitters to confident leader

07 May 2024

In the lead-up to the Class of 2024’s graduation from the Aga Khan Academy Hyderabad, we will feature 12 graduates who have been at the Academy since Grade 1

Here, we learn more about Zara Amjad's transformative journey, who is part of this year's graduating class.

On her first day at school, Zara remembers the scared little girl, who was too nervous to step into her classroom, afraid of how her classmates would perceive her. She was anxious how that day would turn out to be. Today, she has grown up to realise that it was one of the best days of the year that changed the course of her life.  

Making friends was never a challenge for Zara once she got to know her classmates better. As an easy-going, funny and approachable person, she found herself enjoying her first year at the Aga Khan Academy Hyderabad. She made great friends and had more fun as she progressed. With time, her love for the Academy only grew!   

However, her journey into the Middle Years Programme (MYP) and then to the Diploma Programme came with its fair share of challenges. In the MYP, adapting to the idea of exams –sitting in an enclosed room with her classmates and writing a paper on a subject she was not fond of (mathematics) – was an entirely new concept for the then-Grade 6 children. Yet, like all other challenges, she overcame this gracefully never disappointing her academics, friends or teachers.   

Zara’s growth within the Academy helped her adapt to new environments and requirements, become more extroverted and learn about the importance of teamwork. The skills she learnat the Academy helped her outside the classroom, such as with the Aga Khan Academy Hyderabad Model United Nations (MUN)As a committed MUN participant since her early years in the MYP, Zara secured a spot as the director general for the annual conference. The Academy, with its aim to create ethical leaders for tomorrow, played a substantial part in transforming her into the smart, confident and committed young woman, who was well-prepared to lead the conference. These experiences honed her leadership, communication and collaboration skills and made her the best version of herself. 

Zara is the most grateful for the friendships she has built over the years at the Academy. From the beginning of her journey, her friends stood by her through thick and thin and helped her overcome the toughest times. She made some of the best memories of her life with her friends at the Academy.   

In these 12 years, the Aga Khan Academy Hyderabad nurtured values of pluralism and ethics that have become integral to Zara's identity. It fostered her skills and transformed her into a fierce leader, preparing her for the world beyond the school. Zara will remain grateful to the Academy for the teachers, friends, memories and education it has gifted her. 

Interviewed by Shritha Sattaru, Diploma Programme 1