A computer engineering student who enjoys programming and problem solving, Abdulrahman is a 2014 Georgetown MEPI alumnus. After 2011 he has strongly engaged in general civil activities at the time being relief and support of refugees, and soon later went to work on technology related NGOs and events. He is a co-founder of Hexa Connection a non government organisation focusing on spreading technological culture and integrating it with Libyan culture. With Hexa he has worked on projects related to media where he tries to introduce content that raises awareness and teaches Libyans how to use technology and computers in a productive secure manner.
AHMED SHAKIB MOHSANYAR
From a kite seller to an emerging young leader, 24 years old, Shakib Mohsanyar is from Afghanistan. Presently, he is the “Emerging Young Leaders Award” recipient by U.S. Department of State and he is the founder of Afghanistan Needs You campaign. Mr. Mohsanyar is also serving as Executive Director for Sustainable Development for Future organization (SDFO), President of Afghan Professionals Network and Business Innovation Director at Afghanistan Investment Support Agency. Additionally, he is an active alumni of the U.S. Department of State, International Exchange program, GBI 2015 and Kabul U.S. Embassy. He has also appeared and featured on leading local and international media such as Voice of America, The Diplomat, NPR America, BBC, ABCNewsAustralia, Deutsche Welle, ARD German TV, Tolo News, The Tribune Express, Scroll.in, Hasht e Subh, Khaama Press, U.S. Department of State Press Media and Indian Times as well as selected as Young Role Model by Radio Jawanan.
Aviv Nesher traces her involvement in the Israeli peace movement to the age of 14, when she initiated an Israeli-Palestinian dialogue group. Her interest in peace building deepened when she won a scholarship to the United World College international school in India.
The school’s unique international and multicultural community has had a profound effect on her international awareness. It fostered her sense of social commitment and deepened her understanding of the geopolitical situation in the Middle East. Encouraged to become a social leader, Aviv initiated a women-run school at a Palestinian tribal Bedouin community.
Currently pursuing her bachelors in Communications, Journalism, and Asian Studies at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Aviv is able to combine her interest in both Western and Eastern media and cultures. As of this year, Aviv is a Huayu Scholarship student; a grant provided by the Taiwanese government to excelling students who wish to perfect their Mandarin Chinese language skills.
George Zeidan is a Palestinian born and raised in the old city of Jerusalem. He is 27 years old and is currently working for a Danish NGO in Jerusalem as a Finance and Procurement Officer. George graduated from Chowan University in North Carolina with a degree in Business Administration. He is a designated certified Fraud Examiner too. George is very passionate in advocacy, human rights, women rights, and sports. He is one of the co-founders of the right to movement Palestine marathon campaign where he has been very involved in the organization of the event for the last four years. George ran 8 marathons already spreading our message The idea is to use running to illustrate the restrictions imposed on Palestinians ‘movement as a result of the Israeli occupation as well as a male dominant society. George is a One Young World Ambassador and attended their conference in Ottawa.
HASAN ABO SHALY
Hasan is a social activist, entrepreneur, designer and developer, who is passionate about people, art & technology. He studies interactive media & communication, and is part of the research team at the Media Innovation Lab in IDC Herzliya. In 2014, while working as a software engineer, Hasan founded Hasoub - an NGO seeking economic & social change through technology, innovation & entrepreneurship. Where he helped engaging 25000+ people in over 200 activities and a dozen of online communities. In addition to volunteering at Hasoub, Hasan volunteers in different humanitarian aid campaigns, and is a fellow of several programs in the fields of entrepreneurship, business and photography. And in his free time he reads, volunteers, takes photos, does sports and enjoys quality time with family & friends. Currently Hasan is establishing a new educational venture for promoting and teaching technology, making and innovation to Arab kids, teens and adults, and empowering them so they can create!
Admon Shami is set out to make a difference in the world. His passion lies at the intersection of entrepreneurship and technology. Hence, his freakishly obsession with launching projects and strong perseverance till it pays off and becomes self sustaining. This explains why his graduation project got the highest mark in the telecommunications and electronics department at Jordan university of science and technology and has been spin off to become a company called Sodioum, which is the second company he has launched. He couldn't have built something successful without acquiring the appropriate skills and knowledge. That's why, he pursued a certificate in project management and leadership from Georgetown University and is now pursuing a certificate in supply chain management from MIT, in addition, he interned at highly reputable companies and organizations such as Dar Al-Handasah, UK Trade and investment and Jobedu.
AHMED HOSNI MORSY
Ahmed Hosni is 27 social entrepreneur from Egypt. At the age of 21, he started his own social business, SYE English Community, the first English language practice community in Egypt. At SYE, participants learn English as if it is their mother tongue through different events. Over 60,000 people have benefited from these innovative activities. Moreover, his organization has grown to include 3 branches with over 60 employees, including other nationalities like americans and British nationals. In addition to organizing the SYE English Community, Ahmed was part of Siemens’ educational team for a project titled Exprimento in Berlin and participated in the Do school Education challenge in Berlin last year.
Esmaeil Pirhadi is an Iranian Setar Instrumentalist and University Lecturer. His family sent him to Qur'an reciting class based on his artistic Talents. After ranking 3rd in national Qur'an festival, he began singing lessons. He went on to obtain a bachelor’s of Iranian Traditional Music in University of Guilan. Soon he became the University Orchestra’s Tuner and earned two national awards and performed 100 times. He introduced 13 new setar tunes as part of his thesis. He is now the Head of Art Department of Marlik Institute of Innovation & Technology.
Hammou Issad is a Medical Student at the University Mouloud Maameri, Algeria. He was enrolled in the MEPI program at the University of Delaware, USA, and participated to the YLVP at Hyper Island, in Stockholm. He is a social and cultural activist, who tries to help out any initiative that could have a positive impact. To acquire that purpose, he became the Vice-president of the Algerian NGO Tujya and is now the President of the cultural club of his university. He is a project manager at the NGO Rotaract Club Kabylie, leading charity, cultural and medical activities to reach the whole community of his region. He is curious about new technologies, and worked as a journalist in this field during two years for the magazine N’TIC, launching also a Web-Radio. He organized a Wikistage conference, closing it by a speech about the Mankind 2.0. His first passion was literature, as he won national writing contests, and was selected in the top 50 talented youths in Algeria by Djezzy.
HEZHA MOHAMMED KHAN
Hezha Hassan Mohammed Khan
At the age of 26, Hezha is already on her way to becoming one of the most influential youth voices in Kurdistan Regional Iraq. She was the President of US Exchange Programs Alumni Organization and a Professional Development coordinator, at Qaiwan Group, and founder of the American Private Center for Youth Empowerment. She started her leadership career at a very young age. Hezha now works as an International NGO consultant for youth lead organizations, and a Monitoring and Evaluation consultant for International Organizations in Kurdistan Region. By the time she was 18, her achievements garnered the award for Best Case Representative at the RI annual symposium in Gender Equality. Not one to rest on her laurels, Hezha went on to found her own organization at the age of 22. With funding from the U.S. Department of State, the organization started helping young girls and teenagers learn English and equip them with necessary skills through personal and career development programs. Such skills proved to be crucial to breaking the shackles imposed by a male-dominated society.
Javeria is an undergraduate student at Institute of Business Administration, Karachi with a keen interest in policy making. She has endeavored herself to step outside of her comfort zone which has led to her winning an ‘Outstanding Delegate Award’ in Model United Nations Turkey 2015 and spending an exchange semester in USA funded by US Undergraduate Exchange Program where she worked to eliminate stereotypes that Americans have about Pakistanis. With an avid interest in writing and women empowerment, Javeria has interned at War Against Rape and The Express Tribune where she has written stories highlighting the rights and abuse of girls in the Pakistani society. She is an avid believer that arts and dialogue can increase tolerance which led her to establishing the literary content and panel discussions of Youth Arts and Literary Exhibition, an exhibition providing a safe, creative space where despite their religion, caste or skin color, youngsters can paint, write and discuss their heartwarming stories which would help create empathy.
Khadeja a professional geophysicist and software trainer. She obtained her graduate degree from Imperial College London in 2012 and is currently working and living in Tripoli, Libya. She co-founded Project Silphium, after discovering the huge disparity in women’s representation in all aspects of Libyan public life. Project Silphium was launched to create a digital space for Libyan women to share their stories and have their voices heard. It employs social media to facilitate networking, capacity building and training in order to equip Libyan women with the tools and support to develop and promote their projects and initiatives. Project Silphium represents a new way of advocating for the future of women in Libya. They use a fresh approach with special emphasis on technology and innovation. In her role, Khadeja focuses on outreach and building relationships with community partners.
El MAHDI LAFRAM
El Mahdi Lafram is the Project Coordinator for the Environmental Youth Ambassadors at Dar Si Hmad, an award-winning Moroccan NGO operating the world’s largest operational fog-harvesting system. With more than two years' experience in the NGO sector, Mahdi works in environmental activism, youth development, and education. At DSH, Mahdi campaigns for conservation and climate change action through social media, video production, and community events. Born and raised in a small village in Southwest Morocco, Mahdi was the first of his family to graduate from high school and attend university. Currently a Master’s candidate in Business at the Ecole Nationale de Commerce et de Gestion in Agadir, Mahdi also studied Leadership at Benedictine University as a 2015 U.S.-MEPI Student Leader. He holds an Executive Education Certificate from the American University in Cairo School of Global Affairs & Public Policy. Mahdi speaks fluent French and English as well as basic German.
Leaziza is a software engineer and a PhD student in computer science who believe that an innovative education system can empower efficiently young and children. She's involved with two organizations in Mauritania, both acting to create a stimulating environment for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and provide skilled training for the youth. She’s a project manager at the junior chamber of commerce and she co-founded the first ICT incubator in Mauritania, Hadina RIMTIC. She’s also a member of Google Developer Group Nouakchott. Through her voluntary work in these non-profit organisations, Leaziza addresses the main issues affecting the youth in her community: unemployment, the education-to-employment gap, gender inequality and youth participation in public affairs management. She’s engaged in introducing innovative practices and technologies to the education system in Mauritania and supporting young people to develop technology solutions to solve local problems.
MOHAMMED EL WAHABI
Mohammed loves to refer to himself both as a young writer and a global citizen. He is a student in the national school of trade and management, and a member in the story research team in Benmsik university. His unwavering passion for writing enabled him to take part in the ‘Between the lines’ program at Iowa university. He is the winner of two national short story contests; Malika Moustadraf and Dar El Bir. His short stories appeared in various magazines and collective anthologies. Mohammed is the co-founder and vice president of Lotus association for culture and creativity. He currently serves as a member in the youth advisory council of the world oceans day (the ocean project), and project assistant in Green Invest.. His interests include literary translation, blogging, learning new languages, cooking, travel, social work, environment and human rights.
Mostafa Hassanen is a serial entrepreneur from Cairo, Egypt. He is particularly interested in endeavors that cater to the mass markets of the Middle East and are especially inclusive to middle and lower classes of the society. Mostafa also focuses heavily on scientific advancement and the role science and technology can play in improving the quality of life for the majority of people in the MENA region. Mostafa currently is the chief governor at agrimatic farms, LLC. Which is an Egyptian startup aiming at revolutionizing agriculture through automated smart industrial-level soil-less agriculture systems that produce high quality chemical free vegetables at prices that are affordable to a wide stratum of the population. Mostafa hopes that through agrimatic and other similar initiatives he would be able to increase the efficiency of resources’ usage in addition to boosting the quality of life and generating an economic thrust in Egypt and the Middle East.
SAMI AL AHMED
Sami Al-Ahmad is a Syrian entrepreneur helping Syrian youth with an organization called Khatwa. Khatwa’s aim is to help Syrian students who want to register at Egyptian universities. Khatwa’s team consists of experienced students who went through the process of registration before. In addition to helping with registration, they have created a good relationship with university administrations and even with the Ministry of Education. Khatwa played an important role in raising awareness about the situation of Syrians in Egypt and pushed for lowered tuition fees for Syrian students, which were implemented in 2013. Since then, Syrian students pay lower tuition fees. Between 2013 and 2014, more than 300 students registered at universities with the help of Khatwa. By 2015, the number increased to 900. For the academic year of 2015/2016 more than 1,500 registrations are supported by Khatwa. Khatwa is looking forward to help Syrians around the world not only in Egypt .
Samira Abrar is an Afghan researcher, activist and a young social entrepreneur with strong passion for a peaceful world. Completing her Law degree at the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF), Samira and a team of AUAF has represented Afghanistan in International moot courts held in Jordan, Bahrain, Hong Kong and International Criminal Court Moot in The Hague. Samira’s career journey of working and contributing towards building a law-abiding community in Afghanistan started with Norwegian Refugee Council and continued with global multinational companies such as International Development Law Organization and Tetra Tech – Rule of Law Stabilization Program. She has also supported the broader mission of eliminating corruption in Afghanistan, working with Independent Joint Anti-Corruption Monitoring and Evaluation Committee, an Afghan body that promotes anti-corruption practices across the country. Samira is Co-Founder of Afghanistan Anti-Corruption Hub, an emerging youth-led grassroots movement to provide Afghan community with the tools and space to contribute to the anti corruption efforts. Samira is currently part of a team working on Jerusalem Prayer Project – a multimedia platform for artists, musicians, and filmmakers and activists for empowering peace building in The Holy Land and the world-- the team works in California, United States of America. She is also Country Coordinator for Afghanistan at World Beyond War, a global movement to help end militarism and war, in the quest for global peace.
Shiemaa is a Software Engineering Student at the university of Khartoum, an active Entrepreneur and Social activist. With enormous ideas to develop her community she decided to execute them with Social Entrepreneurship.She won the prize of best idea for social innovation in Startup weekend Khartoum, second place in UNDP's social good summit, and won the national finals of Get In the Ring and qualified for regional finals in Morocco. She is known as the active girl, always trying to make an impact, Volunteering and managing important events in her University and community .This has helped her be an excellent executive beside her creative thinking abilities.She is also a debating champion, she won the university's debates in Bahrain 2015. She is now a co-founder of an NGO to teach youth about Debates and the importance of debating as a tool of peaceful and elegant arguing, she trains university students on critical thinking and debates and holds university's debating tournaments.
Yostina is the winner of El Mashrou3 TV show; it was the first reality TV show for young entrepreneurs. After the show I traveled across the country and MENA to meet with youth who are eager to start their own businesses inspire hope into them, help them business planning.She started Taqa solutions which was named among the top 5 innovative renewable energy startups in Egypt. The start-up experience gave me the chance to coach other females who need financial independence and business planning guidance. Yostina also initiated Protons for the well-being of entrepreneurs under stress to help them overcome their negative emotions through self-induced methodologies.The workshop was run in France, Morocco, Egypt, Holland and Turkey. She currently serves as one of the Global Shapers by the world Economic Forum, a young Changemaker by Ashoka and Global entrepreneurship Ambassador for Egypt 2015. Yostina has also joined the SHE entrepreneurs business accelerator by the swedish institution in Stockholm.
KARIM EL SOLH
Karim El Solh is the founder and CEO of Alternative Energy Group, a leading solar company in Lebanon. After graduating from the American University of Beirut as a Civil and Environmental engineer, Karim co-operated with a US based solar company and conducted market analysis and identified the importance of renewable energy to solve the burdensome electricity situation that plague many countries throughout the Middle East and North Africa. Alternative Energy Group has proven highly successful, securing multiple commercial scale solar projects in Lebanon including one of the first large scale hybrid PV-Diesel projects in the Middle East. The company has since established strategic partnership with one of the region’s largest genset manufacturer to raise awareness and promote sustainable and renewable energy with conventional power sources.
KHALAF BEN ABDALLAH
Khalaf Ben Abdallah is a 21 year old medical student. Education and youth inclusion advocator and social entrepreneur, he has successfully co-founded various social start up projects in Tunis and internal regions in Tunisia empowering more than 200 high school students with entrepreneurial thinking skills and breaking social taboos such as nepotism and elitism. Khalaf is currently Vice President at Al Montada; an organization that aims to rethink higher education in Tunisia. He lead the Forum Project which aims to increase students’ inclusion in the reform process by bringing together the different stakeholders in the field. Khalaf is currently working on implementing a Policy Incubation Lab in Tunisian universities to make policy making more inclusive, visionary and data driven. Khalaf was recently selected among the top 25 Ashoka Change-makers. He was also among the Tunisian Delegation to meet Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator, to discuss Youth Socio Economic Inclusion in Tunisia.
Recovering architect and designer, turned Impact Entrepreneur, founded her first successful startup by the name of Lyl Big Designs during university years, at the moment advising several young entrepreneurs and early stage startups while managing Moubarmij as its CEO and serving on the executive board of ISOC Lebanon. Started PiC, an NGO which was among the final 20 out of 394 worldwide initiatives, at the Hivos Social Innovation Award in the Netherlands in 2014. Currently, she advises multiple crowdfunding campaigns after two years in Heading the Projects Management Department at a crowdfunding startup and becoming the Crowdfunding Expert in the MENA region. Layal also served as a co-founder and helped put into work Cycling Circle and Deghri Messengers. The first bicycle messenger service in the MENA region. She also gives workshops and motivational talks in multiple functions and serves as a mentor, coach, judge, speaker and panelist in different competitions and the Techstars community leader for Lebanon. She's the girl from Lebanon's tech women entrepreneurs campaign "Who is Layal?" And was chosen as a ChangeMaker for the CMX in Dubai by Ashoka, and for the TechWomen Program 2017, an Initiative of the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
Mariem Chaabani is an electronics engineer, and works currently in the aeronautical equipment design field. She earned an Electrical engineering degree from the National School of Engineers of Tunis (ENIT), as well as a Master's Degree in Automatics and Signal processing. During her university years, Mariem was involved in different student associations such as IAESTE or JCI, that aim to help students to get international experience and attend informative conferences and events. She also has been selected as a Techwomen 2015, and had the opportunity to follow a mentorship at Autodesk, San Francisco, USA. In 2016, Mariem and a group of fellow Techwomen Alumni founded WoLTech (Women Leaders in Technology), an association that aims to empower women and help them achieve their goals.
Metra Mehran is a Fulbright scholar studying Public Policy at Bush School of governance at Texas A&M University. She holds a bachelor degree in political science and public administration. As a social entrepreneur she used to work with local NGOs and different international organization inside Afghanistan to promote civic activism, empower women, and work for girl’s education at grassroots level. As a global ambassador for education, she started reaching local elders to advocate for girl’s education. Her primary focus is convincing local elders to allow girls to go school and she approached 500 local elders and many Jirgas in different provinces of Afghanistan. She also write opinion papers to local and international outlets about issues in Afghanistan.
MOHAMMED AL AMOUDI
Mohammed Alamoudi is a social entrepreneur, has a strong knowledge and background in Marketing, entrepreneurship and project management through both academic and professional programs. he co-launched the 'Yemen Reads' movement where several reading points were implemented, symposiums and seminars to encourage young people to pick up reading as a fundamental activity. So far over 15,000 books were lent and he is leading efforts to compel his government to open a library in every school across the country. In 2014, The MEPI Organization chose "Yemen reads" as the most effective community projects in Sana’a City among 75. Mohammed has a strong track record on acting on his ideas, taking initiative, and pushing positive social change. In 2016, he won a national competition for creating a social enterprise that supports the employment of young Yemenis and adds value to the local Yemeni Honey industry.
OMAR AL MAADARANI
Omar is studying economics and political studies at American University of Beirut. At university he was elected as the president of UNICEF club and started the psychosocial support program that provides psychological support for Syrian refugee kids. There, he operates in 6 schools built by his university and the program has touched thousands of Syrian kids. Along, with being the president of UNICEF club, Omar was also the president of the Economics Student Society at AUB. He participated in a summer program organized by LSE at Beijing and a social entrepreneurship program in Ethiopia. Because of his psycho-social support project, he was awarded the Exceptional Volunteer of the Year award by the Center of Civic Engagement and Community Service at AUB (CCECS). Right now he is participating in a research project between CCECS and Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma. He is planning to start his own NGO after he graduates.
Salma is a Ph.D candidate in the fields of Gender, Cultures, identities and Media studies at Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdellah University She has received a grant from US embassy to be part of an American Organization called GLOBAL Girl Media,where she received an in-depth training in Journalism and Digital media.Moreover, she was honored to join African Women Writing for Social Change workshop that was held in Kampala,Uganda.Salma has a various amount of experiences,leading and coordinating different projects mainly serving as the training coordinator for the US-Middle East Partnership Initiatives"Empowering Unemployed Women and Youth through Entrepreneurship". She also has a perfect record in social work. She worked for a number of NGOS as well as participating in many local and international social activities and projects, particularly on Media, Education, Women, Peace and conflict resolution Social entrepreneurship and Youth. Parallel to her studies, she is a member of many youth-led organizations and international networks such as Global Girl Media and Network -Morocco , Moroccan American Association for Communication & Cultural Cooperation, African Women development Fund,Swedish Institute of Alexandria,Together as One,Global Shapers,Families Against Terrorism and Extremism Young Moroccan Leaders,Young Researchers on Gender and Development, Moroccan Social entrepreneurs, the Association of Moroccan American Dialogue.
Seddik is a part-time English tutor, and full-time student at USTHB in Algiers with a major of Computer Science. Seddik was part of the “Student Leaders Program” by MEPI where he had to learn about leadership, management, public relations, conflict resolution, and communications. He was also able to learn about other topics while in the United States at some top universities. He has always been interested in developing his skills, and sharing his knowledge with his community, and peers. In 2015 he co-founded CS50xAlgeria, and organized its first 3 month program with the American Cultural Center in Algiers. CS50xA was chosen for a Google micro Grant to represent Algeria in the Africa Week of Code by organising workshops to help empower youth to be able to do programming in an early age https://goo.gl/APYmn4. Last but not least, this year, Seddik was awarded with a fully funded scholarship from Google to attend Android Nanodegree Development online program: https://goo.gl/qPGPf7
Presently, Shimaa is finishing her Business Entrepreneurship major at Effat University in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. She is the founder of Maharati initiative for empowering the youth, both the professional level at work and the personal level. Shimaa participated with Georgetown in the MEPI 2014 program where she developed leadership skills, expanded her understanding of civil society and the democratic process. Moreover, As a model leader in community engagement, Shimaa has been selected to serve as a Mentor to Students leaders program participants, The Mentor position will help participants develop new skills and perspectives to increase their community engagement and conduct workshop for the students. Lastly, she is a member in Empowerment of Entrepreneurship (WED) Empower Women in Business at the United Nations