Dear Jusoor Friends and Family,
We are delighted to share with you information about two of our adult-education programs in Lebanon, and an update and invitation related to our Entrepreneurship Program.
The Jusoor-AUB English Teaching and Learning Program
This program offers Syrian refugee students in Lebanon an opportunity to improve their English skills at no-cost to them, and creates positive space for engagement with the host community. Now for three cycles, students at the American University of Beirut (AUB) get the opportunity to receive training and teach English to groups of 5-10 students for an academic semester. The program, which is implemented in partnership with AUB’s Center for Civic Engagement and Community Service, has served 225 students so far and is continuing to attract great interest from students and volunteer teachers alike.
“This experience not only provided the students with new skills in English but also created a social dimension in which both the students and the tutors were able to confront with different perspectives and opinions on several matters. Especially for me it was an enlightening experience. As a matter of fact, coming from Europe and having lived most of my life there, I here encountered young men with a totally different perspective on life and on how the world functions. I think that as I started questioning many of my certainties, these young Syrians students did the same, at least I hope. It thus was not just a matter of language skills, but mainly of personal growth and cultural encounter.”
– Eleonora Rugiero, AUB, December 2015
The Jusoor-AUB Language Exchange Program
Starting in 2015 with 18 participants and increasing to 40 participants in each of its latest two rounds, this program matches students learning Arabic at AUB with Arabic-native speakers; and Syrian refugee students interested in improving their speaking skills with native English speakers. The matched pairs collaborate one-on-one to improve their language skills. The program also facilitates that Syrian students relate to people from diverse backgrounds and experiences, and foreign students learn first-hand about the experience of refugee peers.
Entrepreneurship Competition Updates
Jusoor launched it’s second Entrepreneurship Competition of 2015-2016 last December, and now 20 teams have been selected to participate in an entrepreneurship bootcamp in Beirut, where they are currently shaping and refining their skills and startup plans before they pitch at the final stage of the competition. This year, we welcome the general public to attend the final day of the competition, where the finalists will pitch their projects in front of the panel of judges.
If you are in Beirut on March 6th, we invite you to join us to attend Jusoor’s first Entrepreneurship Gathering & Final Pitches. The day is planned to include roundtable discussions and a panel on building and supporting Syrian entrepreneurs. More details on the event and the day’s schedule can be found here.
We are also proud to announce our partnership with ArabNet. Jusoor’s bootcamp participants are invited to attend the ArabNet conference in Beirut, which runs from March 1st-3rd. The conference brings together digital communities from across the Levant and North Africa to discuss the latest in digital business and showcase rising entrepreneurial talents, a great opportunity to learn and network for Jusoor’s teams. ArabNet conference info and registration details are available here.
We take this opportunity to thank our partners and sponsors in the Entrepreneurship Program: Boeing, ArabNet, MIT Enterprise Forum, Startup Next, Asfari Foundation, Beirut Digital District, and Haykal Media.
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Our success in helping others at Jusoor has been fueled by volunteers since our inception, and we are very proud to share with you the success of our language learning programs in Beirut, which are volunteer-managed and implemented, and which have reached more than 325 students to date and are still growing.
The Jusoor Leadership Team
Maya Malas, Dubai
Iyad Duwaji, Los Angeles
Rami Zayat, Abu Dhabi
Aziza Osman, Dubai
JP Chilazi, Boston
Leen Al Zaibak, Toronto
Dania Ismail, Dubai
Rania Succar, San Francisco
Fadi Salem, Oxford
Director: Maya Alkateb-Chami, Philadelphia