KATHMANDU, Dec 11: A girl from a poor family in Nepal has been admitted to one of the most expensive schools in the world. She is 15-year-old Ashmita Adhikari from Chitwan. Adhikari has secured a full-ride to study in Switzerland’s Aiglon College known worldwide for its academic excellence for four years.
Founded by John Corlette in 1949, Aiglon College is considered one of the most exclusive and expensive boarding schools in the world. Indian actor Amitabh Bachchan’s son Abhishek Bachchhan is one of the noted alumni of Aiglon College. From Nepal, Industrialist Upendra Mahato’s daughter is enrolled in the same school. Now, Ashmita will also join Aiglon School, which charges over $110,000 (approximately Rs 13 million) per annum in tuition fees alone.
Ashmita’s excellent academic achievement has made it possible for her to secure a spot in Aiglon College for free of cost. After studying at Samata School by paying Rs 100 (less than 1 USD) a month as tuition fee, she will now set her academic journey to one of the world's most distinctive boarding schools where tuition fee exceeds millions of rupees.
This incredible journey of Ashmita is made possible by the initiative taken by former President of Non-resident Nepali Association (NRNA) Upendra Mahato. Mahato had long been lobbying to secure admission of students hailing from poor families in Nepal in this prestigious College.
Mahato had invited Aiglon College’s Executive Director Richard McDonald to Nepal in 2019. During his visit to Nepal, McDonald had shown curiosity about the education and students of Samata School. He expressed his interest to provide scholarship to one student of the school. The College picked Ashmit as a recipient of this scholarship opportunity based on the performance and academic records of 500 students studying in Samata School.
According to the Founder of Samata School Uttam Sanjel, McDonald has promised to offer a full-ride to Aiglon College to one student from Nepal every year. “Ashmita Adhikari has been selected for this year. Children born in poor families will get an opportunity to study in one of the best and prestigious schools in the world. This is no small feat,” he said.
Ashmita is now preparing to fly to Switzerland for her higher studies. The college has asked her to arrive at the college by January 10. She is currently attending online classes required before getting admitted to the college.
Taking to Republica she said, “I had never dreamt of studying abroad. I am both excited and scared after having secured a position in the prestigious college. I equally feel challenged after this achievement.”
Ashmita, who passed the Secondary Education Examination (SEE) this year with 3.9 GPA, had studied at Samata School from Grade 6. She said that it was a dream come true for her to receive an opportunity to join the prestigious Aiglon College.
Watch the full video interview with Adhikari and her parents – Amrit Adhikari and Kalpana Adhikari-- and the founder of Samata School, Uttam Sanjel.