On April 28, 2008, Levermore Global Scholar Mashal Hamidi taught a lesson in the LGS lounge on how education can be the answer to many of the world's problems today. Using the materials that she had obtained from the Global Campaign for Education (GCE), a campaign led by parents, teachers, and children who believe that their governments should provide access to affordable quality education, Mashal started her own initiative at Adelphi Access to Education Campaign.
The initiative was developed during the GCE Global Action Week when GCE participants prepared for teaching "The World's Biggest Lesson" on April 23. During this week, parents, teachers, politicians, journalists, children, and others around the world raised taught a lesson about providing access to education for everyone and focused on the causes and consequences of exclusion from affordable quality education. Next academic year, Mashal plans to open the campaign to the rest of Adelphi's community and to work with other student groups to raise awareness about the importance of education and the consequences of lack thereof.
A Message from Mashal
Education - a right or a privilege? For individuals like you and me, education is a must. I guess that makes us fortunate, right? For a young girl or boy in sub Saharan Africa, Afghanistan, Iraq, and other developing nations, on the other hand, education is a dream. It is a far away fantasy that is only talked about.
While we may see children on television living in poverty and hunger, has it ever crossed your mind that they are suffering because of lack of access to education? Guess what? It is true! With education they would not be in the state of poverty in which we see them. Education would break the cycle of poverty.
As a native of Afghanistan, I have a deep concern for the right to education for all. Due to war and instability, the youth in my motherland are deprived of a primary education which leads them to lack many other things in life. Instead of going to school, girls are taught how to manage the household and do chores while young boys work for the family.
When I was a senior in high school, I was invited to an event at the United Nations for Global Campaign for Education. It was then that I met another inspiration in my life. He was an 85 year old elderly man from Kenya who was wearing a school uniform. The reason he was wearing this navy blue school uniform was simply because he was an elementary school student. Yes, an 85 year old elementary school student.
His village recently abolished school fees, allowing him to afford to attend school. To be sure, he did not allow his age to become an obstacle for him. Indeed, he was excited about school more than any other student I have ever seen. He held my hand and said to me in his native tongue, "I am lucky to go to school. I love it." It was then that I realized that not everyone is as privileged as we are in the United States to actually be able to attend school and college.
Education is obviously a very important factor in life. While we may be fortunate to obtain a higher education, there are individuals who yearn for the sight of a classroom and blackboard. Primary education in many developing nations is a privilege when in fact it should be a right!
I want to make Access to Education Campaign my initiative simply because I believe that education is the pathway to success and the solution to all the problems in the world. Furthermore, every little action that individuals take may have a great impact on the local and global communities at large. Thus, as a Levermore Global Scholar, I hope to raise awareness about the Global Campaign for Education in order to help provide affordable quality education for all.
Written by Mashal Hamidi '10
Edited by Yana Kusayeva