New Beginnings

Photo by: Keara Emery

Over the years, PHS has begun to open its door to different groups of students from across town to across seas. Including a junior named Muhammad Hasaan. Like many other high school students, Hassan experienced the change of a different environment through the process of moving. The only difference is that he had to leave everything that he knew behind to start a new life. 

“It took me a really long time to adjust here,” Hasaan said. “I struggled to fit in for quite a while. The people and the environment were really different, but I met a lot of people that made it a lot easier and helped me become comfortable here.”

Hasaan arrived in America his sophomore year with his parents and his older sister, with no experience or knowledge of America apart from the movies he had watched. While many other students have to get adjusted to a new town or a new house. Hasaan and his family had to adjust to a new country.  Of course moving to a new place can cause someone to become homesick.

“I used to get extremely homesick,”Hasaan said. “And I would miss my old city, my old friends, and everything about that because I felt really lonely. But recently I feel a lot better and don’t get that feeling anymore.” 

Since Hasaan arrived in December 2021, he was too late to join the sport that he loved the most, soccer. But coming into his junior year, he was able to join the team and become more acquainted with his fellow classmates, growing to become more comfortable and more welcomed in the school environment. But what is interesting is why someone would move to a completely new country to start a new life.

“My dad decided to move here because of more job opportunities, and he admitted himself to the university for his masters degree to take his career to the next level and our family moved with him,” Hassan said. 

According to Hasaan, he expected that the people in America would treat him differently. But he discovered joyfully that he and his family were welcomed with open arms, despite their religion or nationality.

“I was originally born in Pakistan, but I have lived most of my life in UAE ( United Arab Emirates), Dubai and that’s where I moved to America from,” Hassan said. 

In the UAE regions, the most worshipped religion is Islam, which would make the transition to the different foods and approach to things different here. But that never stopped Hasaan from being himself in a new environment.

“There is a big difference between Pittsburg and Dubai,” Hasaan said. “Pittsburg is a small town whereas Dubai is a pretty big and advanced city but I feel people here are a lot closer to each other because of how small Pittsburg is and everyone just connects well.”