The lady with the magic words (a tribute to Laiba Khalid)

She will never hesitate in telling you where you went wrong in your work but the way she does this is so encouraging, so lifting that it will make you want to do better. She is a brilliant writer, an amazing blogger herself but if you write a good piece; she will be the first one to appreciate your work.

She is one of the most gracious, most brilliant and kindest bajis I know. She is Laiba Khalid.

I never quite understood how she made the time to do all that she did. She’s managed KemUnited brilliantly; taken it to the heights that it now enjoys. She’s garnered numerous fans (one of my good friends is a diehard fan of yours baji. So if you ever see a lean, geeky girl staring at you somewhere in the university; don’t be scared, she’s not a stalker; just an avid fan) with her writing, she’s inspired people to write and work better; and in doing all these amazing tasks, she has never failed to keep that encouraging smile on her face.

In 2014, a poem “knight-ingale”:, was written as a tribute to another one of the great kemcolian ladies I know: Sidrah Latif baji.

It was such a great gesture that it left a lasting impression on me. We all say thank you to our mentors, our teachers and people who inspire us but this was a unique way of showing how much we admire them. It’s something permanent. It’s something they can always go back to. Laiba baji has been kind, earnest and simply amazing. And I thought after all her hard work throughout these years, she deserved such a tribute. I don’t know her personally, I have met her in the 2 and a half years that I’ve been here only about 5 or 6 times but I have corresponded with her a lot more times than this.

Any time I had a problem, a query about any piece I was writing; I never thought twice before asking her for advice because she had always given me the confidence that she would respond; that she would help me to the best of her ability. And I have never been disappointed. Even when her exams were dangerously near; she never failed to help me out. I can sometimes ask pretty stupid questions and it can be really irritating. I’m not very adept at technology, even the simplest stuff; like downloading gifs etc. And I shamelessly asked her help with this kind of stuff. She could easily refer me to one of her other juniors who could have guided me but she never once made fun and never once evaded my questions. She’s just great. What else can I say!! And I will always be grateful to her for all her guidance and help; she’s played a major role in making me a lot more confident writer.

The best way to tell her how much she’s appreciated and what a change she has inspired; I thought I could collect anecdotes and instances of her interaction and guidance to my fellow peers. I would have loved to write a poem for her but considering my poetic abilities; that would have had many chances of turning out as a joke rather than a tribute. So then I thought, this is better and a lot safer!! :D

So here goes:

Muhammad Mohsin Ali writes: “Laiba baji, you are the first person with whom I interacted with through KemUnited, and that interaction is the basis of what I am today. You have always been extremely supportive, and the best part is that you always allowed us to reach within ourselves and discover more. You encouraged me (and everyone else :P) to implement ideas, learn and apply new stuff, and basically that sense of freedom has helped a huge lot. I am more than grateful for all the trust you have shown; it is the one thing that has made me learn how to (hopefully) manage responsibility, and has given me a lot of self-confidence as well. You have been one of the best seniors we’ve ever had, and I’m sure we won’t forget you, or the legacy you have left with us. KemUnited owes a lot to you for what it is today (well, on a fair scale, it owes almost everything :3). And may your future life be cool and full of more awesomeness. Thank you for everything!"

You’ve been an epitome of awesomeness. And I have proof:

Hassaan Wajid of batch ’20 told me that he requested the admin of KemUnited facebook page to send him some links of blogs written about guidance with MCAT. He received a quick and a very helpful response. Those blogs became his motivation; they provided him with the best guidance he could have hoped for.
In his own words:
“Since I am very junior to Laiba baji, I didn’t meet her all that often. I had never written any blogs or articles for anyone or any site before nor had any intention of doing so, but then someone changed my mind and she is our very own Laiba baji. I was convinced to write because I wanted to have an impact on someone through my writing just like she had on me. She was the one who gave me the courage to keep going with my MCAT struggle; whenever I felt like I just couldn’t cope with all the pressure anymore; the one thing that usually convinced me to keep going was: “Well, Laiba baji did her preparation in just 15 days, so why can’t I try to keep going when I have all these months of time.” Her blog gave me the push when I needed it: Three cheers for her and her magic words. May she have a bright and successful career ahead.”

You’ve been an inspiration and I have witnesses vouching for that:

Maham Waqar says: “I could not have much interaction with Laiba baji being new in KemUnited but I had always heard her as being a very encouraging, motivating and inspirational senior by my class mates. I remember when I mailed her my very first blog for KemUnited, her heartening words urged me to write more for and eventually become a part of the KemUnited family. I have seen very few seniors who are so humble and welcoming. The way she has managed King Edward's largest and most popular web portal is exemplary. I wish her best of luck for her future life and pray that may Allah give her even more success in the years to come.”

You smile really is very popular :D

Aimen Saeed writes: “Laiba baji: following her since my pre-med life, she has always been my role model. Her articles always inspired me. Her personality always inculcated in me the confidence to carry myself as sophisticatedly as she does. Laiba baji is a legendary kemcolian that I always look up to whenever I feel deficient in creativity. I haven’t spent much time with her but whatever I did was the coolest. She always met with a very pleasant smile radiating so much optimism. Lastly I just want say that laiba baji: you are more than a senior to me; you are a mentor, a great administrator and a wonderfully awesome sister. Stay blessed and may you find your better half soon.”

Ayesha Shahid writes: “Hi Laiba Baji :) I seriously don’t remember when was our first interaction and how it went. But Honestly this interaction gave me one very cool baji ; ) . KemUnited will never forget your dedication and devotion. I'd like to sincerely thank you for your guidance and sisterly Affection. Stay Blessed :)”

Ayesha Mushtaq very sweetly states: "Laiba baji has been ‎an amazing mentor over the last year. She has always been there whenever I needed her help;any time of the year; even when she had her prof. Her dedication towards KemUnited is of course unparalleled. Definitely going to miss her guidance in the coming days."

Aneeqa javed writes:

“Hi Laiba baji! I have known you for perhaps the longest time here and I just wanted to thank you for being my mentor for the past two years. You are a great person and all of us at KemUnited look up to you but we know that none of us can be like you for you showed utmost dedication towards this blog and you made it what it is today, at times managing things even single-handedly. I wish you all the luck in the world for your future endeavors and may the odds be ever in your favor. 😊 Jazak'Allah for everything.”

Zanira Ali has put into beautiful words the feelings of every junior you helped:

“When you are a Freshie; you feel out of place, you are scared and you need a reason to stay, to feel at home. Laiba Baji gave me one. I will always owe her for that. Never have I met a senior so understanding and patient as her. A senior who despite all my procrastination tolerated me, encouraged me and helped me grow. Laiba Baji: you truly are a wonderful person and I wish that you get everything you wish for and more. Stay blessed. Stay awesome :D”

You were the lady knight in shining armor for our very beloved KemUnited and you fought all its battles valiantly. We salute you for that.

“Dearest Laiba Baji,
I've known you from my primitive days as a kemcolian and I am so glad that you were one of the first seniors I got to interact with. You have always been amazingly helpful, whether it was guiding us for our anatomy spotting or getting us through our writer's block, you've been there every time. It has been, without a doubt, an honor: knowing someone who is so dedicated and fair in her dealings. I've learned from you the skills of being a good leader. You've been an asset to KemUnited, and if it hadn't been for you; KemUnited wouldn't have reached its present day heights.
May Allah help you in your future endeavors and may you bring home even greater Laurels.
Yours sincerely, Larabe Farrukh”

Our very own Unsa baji is all praise for you and your abilities: "Laiba Baji is one of those people who I looked up to even before the commencement of my first year classes.
Her blogs, her helping nature and the dedication she has shown for KEMUNITED through the years are absolutely commendable. It's been an honour working with her and a great learning experience too. KEMUNITED will always be needing her care and guidance.
Lots of prayers for a great future, baji :) "

Salik bhai probably used the best and most engaging story to aptly describe how really cool and remarkable you are: "Okay so writing these formal things is really hard for me but this once I think it deserves to be written. Laiba Baji is one of the Best Seniors I have known at KEMU. From Laiba's chronicles to her being the Chief Admin of KemUnited, Laiba Baji was an integral part of KemLife. Your life here is the circle of people you surround yourself with and with KemUnited being the first society I joined, my circle always had Laiba Baji, Moeed Bhai and Taroob baji. In my first year, the inspiration with which we looked at Bilal bhai; that same inspiration was later shifted to Laiba Baji. From societies to studies to life advice; Laiba baji was always just a text away and I guess all of us KemUnited people have nagged her at least once in our prof time and she has always listened patiently and given the best advice. Long story short: Laiba baji is simply AWESOME and to end my part I have a little story of her Awesomeness: Once upon a time in my KemUnited interview Laiba Baji asked me what post I wanted and I said “Baji koi cool sa naam hona chahye post ka” and baji was like “tm hi bta do kya cool sa naam ho” and I said,” Baji koi secretary, director type rakh dein” and then baji said: “Editor USMLE section rakh lo, sounds better in literary circles” and I was like: “that’s awesome baji”.  *laughs* True story! And I’ve shared it exclusively for this tribute!"

In a nutshell; no words will be enough to thank you for your diligence. You have given all the kemcolians something to always be proud of: KemUnited. I hope our gesture has elucidated how special and beloved you are.


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