May you all turn your darkness into a very bright future!

In two weeks, I am glad to announce that it will officially be three full years of my living here in the United States. Three long years of tears, happiness and achievements. What an extraordinary opportunity I have received in coming to this country! I consider myself not only incredibly fortunate to have been chance…

730 days: both a lifetime and a blink of an eye

Summer 2013. The war in Syria continued but events were unfolding that would change the trajectory of my life forever because a small group of people at Illinois Institute of Technology, EducationUSA, the Institute of International Education, and Jusoor were working to support university students like myself whose higher education was halted by conflict. The…

The Syrian Club

Two semesters ago, 14 Syrian students packed their bags for a long trip and went to the airport. They all had one same destination, Chicago, Illinois, USA. They left their families and friends with many hopes and promises to be fulfilled. When I look back to the first couple of weeks, now after the year…

TEDxIIT

In the previous months, I worked with an amazing team of students at Illinois Institute of Technology to organize a TEDx event (see www.ted.com/tedx for more information). This year we had the word “Exponential” as a theme for the talks. Organizing an event like that can be really challenging; it took us a lot of time and…

IIT Research Day poster competition

IIT Research Day poster competition is an annual event organized by the IIT Office of Research The competition is divided into graduate and undergraduate tracks and includes students from various academic departments. Each department chooses the best researches/posters, and then asks them to participate in this competition. Along with 48 other posters, my team and…

The Big Event

It was a beautiful sunny morning when we set off to the Eden Place today. We were one of the many groups volunteering at the IIT fifth annual big event and were excited to see how the rest of the day is going to be like. When we first got there, we had no idea…

The American Vigil

I know that the following lines talking about American martyrs might sound weird since I am a Syrian student writing them and I have tens of thousands of martyrs in my country that I can mourn, but the thing is I am a human being in the first place. When I first heard about the…

April showers bring May’s flowers

It was rainy today with thunder and lightning in Chicago. The very loud thunder was really scary, it made one of my friends today thinking that it’s a blast sound like what happened a few days ago in Boston! He never thought that a thunder might sound like a blast before, however, what happened in…