Unsere Stipendiatinnen und Stipendiaten
Seit dem Projektstart in 2013 konnten bereits 8 Studierende ihr Studium durch unsere Förderung erfolgreich absolvieren. Aktuell unterstützt das Stipendienprojekt in Afghanistan 4 Stipendiaten und Stipendiatinnen. Hier gibt es einen besonderen Einblick in das afghanische Leben in Form der persönlichen Erfolgsgeschichten unserer Stipendiaten und Alumni, die ihr Studium bereits erfolgreich beendet haben.
Fardina studiert seit April 2014 Economics an der Universität Herat. Sie möchte in einem Waisenhaus Kinder in Englisch unterrichten und darüber hinaus einen Lese- und Diskussionstreff für Mädchen organisieren, in dem Zeitungen gelesen und über aktuelle Ereignisse diskutiert werden soll.
Interview with Fardina
What is your name and how old are you?
My name is Fardina and I’m 20 years old
Where and what do you study?
I study Economics at Herat University
What made you go to University? Do other members of your family have an academic background or are they planning to study?
Since childhood, it was my dream, to invest in my future, my family and my country’s future by getting a higher education. Only through a University degree, I see myself enabled to contribute to the world’s knowledge and to be an agent of change in a country where female literacy rate is only 24.2%.
Yes, my two elder brothers have already completed their University degrees and my youngest brother is preparing for the University Entrance exam of 2018. Because of their liberal thinking, I was able to finish High School and was allowed to attend University and not forced into marriage instead. I lost my dad when I was about five.
Are there any other possibilities – except for SOG – in Afghanistan to be supported financially during your studies, e.g. by the state?
No, there is not any yet except SOG. The state provides Higher Education with no cost but there is no additional support provided by the state.
How do you like your studies? What do you like the most and what do you not like so much?
My life would not be the same without going to University. I like everything about my experience at the University. The new people I have met, the experience I gain everyday from studying, writing and exploring new ideas. Overall, I like all the subjects related to economics but mostly like analytical subjects like, data analysis, econometrics, and mathematics and working with analytical software like SPSS. I don’t like my theology class that is a compulsory class for all University students in Afghanistan.
How many students are there at your University / at your faculty?
There are around 16,000 students at the Herat University and around 700 enrolled students in the Economics Faculty.
What is your charitable work about? How did you get the idea and how do you like it?
I am teaching at a government-funded orphanage. Due to lack of resources, the orphanage is understaffed. I am teaching math and other basic science subjects to girls between 5 to 14 years of age. I just wanted to do something to have a significant impact and nothing else came to my mind than enabling girls through education and science. So far, I really like the experience as I see that my students have made a lot of progress. Everyone was scared of math when I first started my class about 4 months ago but now most of my students have become so passionate about math and science subjects overall and they only insist in teaching them math and science.
What are your plans or ideas for your future after graduating? Would you like to stay in your country and what are the reasons for you to stay or not to stay?
Actually after finishing my undergraduate degree in economics, I would like to pursue my master’s degree in the same field, particularly in econometrics and mathematical economics in a Western country and also obtain my PhD. before I turn 30. I would like to be actively involved in the academic field in my own country after my PhD. by conducting research, write and publish my work extensively. I also want to help creative entrepreneurship in Afghanistan where new businesses can transform the existing economy and creating new jobs given the rapid increase of workforce in the next 5 to 10 years. At the government level, I also want to be involved in advocacy and giving the government direction towards effective policy formulation by developing the scientific foundations of the relevant institutions and improve the terms of trade of my country with the region.
What do you say about the overall (political) situation in Afghanistan? Is corruption an important issue? Does Afghanistan support its youth?
I was born during the civil war; my memory is filled with stories of human insecurity, displacement and poverty. Although there have been significant developments after the collapse of the Taliban regime, the road to a stable Afghanistan is a long one. Currently, the political situation is disappointing for many of the Afghan citizens; insecurity, corruption and unemployment are the three main concerns for every Afghan. Afghanistan is like a malnourished child, the problem doesn’t lie just with legs or its hands but yes, corruption as a heritage of Karzai’s administration and as one of the main factors have affected the whole of the structure of this malnourished structure. Therefore, interventions must continue at all levels. Corruption is currently impeding all local, regional, national and international efforts of the development and even the security. In nowhere else in the world, it takes 3 to 4 months for an ordinary citizen to get a Passport after standing in long queues for weeks. Afghanistan along with its international partners must invest in quality education in primary and tertiary sectors, make the judiciary independent in practice and implement transitional justice.
A student from zero point to the university period in Afghanistan
Afghanistan is a place no one can imagine to come to live and to see what is going on here. I would like to tell you a bit of my previous life as one of an Afghan resident who has encountered lots of difficulties. When I was fifteen years old and in eighth grade in 2007, I didn’t know anything about my future, because during that time there were no high schools in the village and my family couldn’t support me to go to town to continue my studies. I lost my father in this time. After my graduation from secondary school, the elder of the village brought me to the city, and introduced me to an orphanage. He encouraged me to go on with my studies. It was difficult, but I could continue my studies in the city. Studying at high school was like a dream for me.
Finally, I graduated from high school in 2010, passed the Kankor examination (University Entrance Exam), and the Faculty of Education in Herat province selected me. Although it was a big success for me, I was not able to continue with classes. I faced complicated challenges, because I couldn’t stay in the orphanage any longer and I didn’t know what to do, where to go, or who would support me. One day later I decided to leave Afghanistan and go to work in Iran, but one of my close friends Zeyaulhaq told me that there is an NGO that has training classes for the refugees, the destitute.
The next day, I sadly went to that NGO, asked them if they could help me. They could only keep me in their electric class for six months, I accepted and they let me stay in their camp which was for the refugee families. After some time they found out that I was a university student and they changed my class from electric class to secretary class, which was for educated beneficiaries.
In January 2014, I applied for SOG (studies without borders org.) scholarships, because I was looking for financial support, I needed more funds for my studies here at the university. I was accepted for the SOG scholarship and it is a distinct honor for me and I am swelling in pride that I am one of the scholarship holders of SOG. SOG was supporting me in 2014 for my studies at Herat University, and I graduated from Herat University in early December 2014.
During the time of the SOG program I have done some charitable works, I have launched an English course in the dormitory of Herat University, about 20 students graduated from English course in early November 2014.
None of my family members, neither my father nor my mother, were educated, but I could improve my level of education from zero point up to now, without any funds from my family.
I think self-improvement doesn’t require an improved country; any one in any country or region can develop their studies, our outstanding motivations are what we need to be ready for our self-development, and waiting for us just to take actions. When I think of my past I wonder what would have happened to me if I hadn’t become a university graduate student. For this, I always thank God and the people who helped me.
NajibullahI was born and grew up in Herat, Afghanistan. My aim in life is to acquaint myself with many cultures and to continue my education up to PhD degree in order to expand my knowledge and skills. I would like to be part of the development of my community which gave me the motivation to use any chances available now.
I applied for SOG when I heard about it because it appeared as the perfect opportunity to achieve the aims I have been searching in life – communication and having great friends abroad. Besides, I was sure that this program will help me in having the opportunity to get my master degree. So after being awarded for the SOG scholarship I started my volunteer work in a variety of activities beyond my field of study, those activities I feel passion for and where I am self-motivated, like teaching, doing research, running a new accreditation test center at Herat university, raising health related awareness in social media, culture related issues in communication and participating in many video conferences with foreign universities, in workshops and in debate tournaments at Afghanistan.
The SOG scholarship has helped me a lot in acquiring and developing my leadership, communication, and public speaking skills during my volunteer work as TA (Professor Assistant) at Herat University, teacher at LLC (Lincoln Learning Center), active debate member and judge at APT, a social enclosure in many events, and as health and safety publisher on a web page with over four thousand followers.
Furthermore, I love to relax from work by playing, kickboxing and bodybuilding in my free time.
Finally, I have got the opportunity now to work as an engineer, because of the charitable work done as SOG scholarship holder at TNCC (Tarha Naw Construction Company) where I worked when I was junior. I am planning to study a one year academic leadership program and to start my master degree afterwards, either in Urban Planning or Project Management.
SumaiyahI am Somaya Akhgar, wishing you best for life from western Afghanistan. I was born in an ordinary family.
I finished my high school here in Herat with honors, I have always felt my responsibilities during that age, and it improved my level of confidence. Having completed High School in 2010, I participated in a University Entrance Exam. I was admitted to the Education Faculty of Herat University. It was a great moment in my life when I heard I was accepted in university. I have made every endeavor to pass University with honors. I just finished university studies and got my BA with great honor and currently I am planning to go abroad for further studies.
I was always keen on studying abroad, so this feeling made me search on the Internet, find out about scholarships and fill out applications. It was my second year of studying at university when I heard about SOG scholarships. I really did know nothing about SOG programs and even didn’t ask anybody, the only thing that came to my mind was studying in Germany. This might be funny or a somehow stupid thing but while filling out any scholarship application I was just thinking about going to that country for my higher studies. Later when I was accepted for the SOG scholarship and read the Emails I received I found out this scholarship differs from others I applied to.
Indeed it was different and special, the SOG program determined my way of thinking in which I could structure a special personal paradigm that made me unique from others. Before applying for a SOG scholarship I was just a student but today I teach over 50 students with full confidence, I was always in favor of helping my fellow citizens and people who are in need and the SOG team provided me with a way I can help my people, take a step toward developing and helping my country and recognize my ability.
Sara studiert seit April 2014 English Language and Literature. Sie möchte neben ihrem Studium Englischunterricht geben und dabei partizipative Lehrmethoden – anders als in Afghanistans Schulen üblich – einsetzen. Sie schreibt außerdem, dass sie nach ihrem Studium ein „Women English and Computer Centre“ aufbauen möchte, in dem Frauen Englisch- und Computerkenntnisse erwerben können.
Bashira studiert Mikrobiologie und möchte ihre Fähigkeiten nutzen, um die überlasteten Mitarbeiter einer Herater Klinik durch Hilfstätigkeiten zu unterstützen.
Saifullah ist Informatikstudent und hat es sich zum Ziel gesetzt, seine Mitmenschen im Rahmen seiner ehrenamtlichen Arbeit über Frauenrechte aufzuklären.
Selbstporträts unserer Alumni
Einen Einblick in das Leben unserer afghanischen Stipendiaten und Stipendiatinnen und die Bedeutung des Stipendiums für sie geben die persönlichen Erfolgsgeschichten unserer Alumni, die ihr Studium bereits erfolgreich beendet haben.