From Where I Stand: August 2020 Edition

One of our favorite sayings is “Once a UGRAD, always a UGRAD.” Even when the U.S. portion of the Global UGRAD experience is over, alumni are always a part of this big and talented family. The lessons learned and knowledge gained during the exchange live on as alumni share their stories and dedicate efforts to shine brightly in their home communities. We hope these glimpses of life after Global UGRAD inspire you – and, if you are an alum, we hope to hear from you too!

Doaa Mohaisen, The Palestinian Territories, Carroll College, Global UGRAD 2016-2017

“I stand at Zakreet Fort on the west coast of Qatar. I took this picture on a trip with friends to discover forts and deserted villages of Qatar.

I just finished my master’s in Translation Studies at Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Qatar where I’m also working as a research assistant. I have also just finished my fellowship with Teach for Qatar (TFQ), an NGO working as part of the solution to help solve some of the challenges Qatar’s students face. The experiences I went through with TFQ are leading me to take a major career shift as my interest in education and development is growing by the day. My Role Model, my graduation project from TFQ, won second place at TFQ’s annual contest and will be featured at HundrEd. I’m uncertain about what the future holds, but I’m looking forward to new adventures.”

Eva Vranici, Albania, Keene State College, Global UGRAD 2017-2018

“It has been a little more than two years since my UGRAD experience and since then it has been a roller-coaster. I have had another scholarship, an internship, a student job, I started learning a new language, also a new programming language, I lived in another country, traveled across Europe, and I graduated. Still, in my everyday life, I feel very connected to my time in UGRAD mostly because my UGRAD friends I talk to and share ideas. Recently, together with another UGRAD, we have been working on launching an online platform that goes along with the mission of UGRAD and World Learning: helping and supporting youth/students to find opportunities, such as scholarships, to grow with. I am very grateful for the UGRAD experience and I would like for other students, too, to be able to find various scholarships that will help them to elevate themselves in multiple fields.”

Rosely Maurin Arana Meredith, Guatemala, Murray State University, Global UGRAD 2013-2014

“First of all, I would like to share with you that at the beginning of this year, I started the Master’s in Medical Laboratory Science at Tarleton State University in Texas, an opportunity that is giving me the tools to perform Molecular Diagnosis and to be certified by the American Society of Clinical Pathologist’s Board of Registry Molecular Biology. In the picture, I am standing at the PCR room where the “Polymerase Chain Reaction” takes place to quantify the DNA. I have been standing in this room since July when I started my job at a molecular laboratory in Grapevine, Texas. Since music is part of my life as well, I have been recording some original songs and covers that will be available at the end of August. The first one will be released soon and it is a cover called “So Will I” and it can be found on platforms by “Maureen Meredith.” Although this year has been uncertain and difficult in a lot of ways, I am thankful for a new day, for the UGRAD family, and for the opportunity to help and love one another.”

Alvin Kurnia Sandy, Indonesia, Wilson College, Global UGRAD 2015-2016

“Who would have guessed that the Spanish class, which I took back in the States, would help me survive in Latin America three years later? Greetings from San José, Costa Rica! Alright, a little story about how I ended up here. So about a year ago, I managed to convince the Nippon Foundation of Japan to sponsor my further studies. This scholarship allowed me to pursue a dual Master’s degree at the United-Nations-mandated University for Peace in Costa Rica and Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines. At the same time, the East-West Center offered to fund my two-year Master’s program at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa. Unfortunately, I had to decline the offer since the program was supposed to run at the same time as my study in Costa Rica. And here I am now. Alright, I hope everybody is well despite the situation. Stay safe and “pura vida!”







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