Anoud, a 19 year old from Syria, just recently packed up her belongings and moved to Montreal, Canada to start a new chapter at McGill University. Before, she had been living with her family in Jordan, undecided about the choices that would determine her next path. She is incredibly passionate about helping other people and even wants to be a neuroscientist in the future. In the past, she volunteered with UNICEF and their participatory analysis research. She was always a great student and did very well in all her classes. Her family was so proud of her, yet at the same time, they felt sad because they didn’t know what could be next for Anoud. What would her future be like? University tuition fees were expensive in Jordan and they weren’t sure if they could afford it. When Anoud got her first scholarship, it wasn’t for the major that she was passionate about. Rather than accepting the scholarship and studying something she wasn’t enthusiastic about, Anoud decided to continue her studies online in order to reach her true dreams.
Anoud first learned about Kiron through her friends and on social media. She started out by taking an English course and some courses on entrepreneurship and technology. While at first she wasn’t a fan of online learning, she began to see the benefit in meeting new people, even though they were online and far away. She could still form bonds and converse with people from all over the world. Getting the chance to meet other learners from different countries and cultures was new and interesting as they were able to exchange ideas together, talk about the future, and share tips about job searches and scholarship opportunities. She realized that there were many people out there like her. They were also waiting for an opportunity. Though there were many people who were very smart and capable, many of them also couldn’t find new pathways forward. The more they talked, the more confidence Anoud gained in her English-speaking skills. She said that this confidence really helped her prepare for an important interview — an interview to get a life changing scholarship. Since her family didn’t speak any English, Anoud knew she had to find a different way to learn a new language. Accessing resources to learn English and also to find language partners with whom she could practice speaking with was her next step. Although it was challenging, she managed to write an essay for the scholarship application. She wrote about her dreams and her qualifications, explaining why she was the right person to receive the scholarship. Finally, she was accepted and received the 100 Syrian women 10,000 lives scholarship from Jusoor! Now, she is starting her education journey at McGill University in Montreal and on her way to working in medicine.
Anoud believes that education is important because it makes our world safer and more peaceful. She hopes that “with education, we can rebuild the countries one day [that suffered] from the war”. She also states, “I’m also like one hundred percent sure that with education, you feel more confident, you can achieve your dreams… you can really help like thousands of people, you can help your family and the feeble”. Anoud wants her story to inspire girls all over the world who are looking to go to university or access higher education, who are still waiting for an opportunity. Currently, less than 5% of refugees are able to access higher education.
“My dream is to complete my studies and become a doctor to be able to help the people who are struggling from different kinds of diseases. In addition to making my own project to help as many refugee students as I can …access higher education.”