JULY 19 – 28

Alumni Profiles

We are extremely proud of the great achievements made by our Women2Women Alumnae. Following our program, Alumnae are expected to continue their leadership journey whether that be through the implementation of their Women2Women action plan, furthering their education or volunteering in their community. This page is dedicated to them. Here you will find their stories and learn about the work they are involved in.

Suzie, USA, W2W 2012, 2013, 2014
Women2Women was a life changing experience for Suzie. After attending the program, she dedicated her free time to helping others. She founded a club at her school called “It's All About Giving.” Through Women2Women, Suzie learned that making a difference starts with small acts of kindness. Suzie has returned two summers in a row to intern with Women2Women. Suzie aspires to be a doctor and participated in a summer program at Harvard Medical School.

Farida, Algeria, W2W 2011
Farida is 19 years old and is studying Mathematics and Computer Engineering at the University of Science and Technologies Houari Boumediene in Algiers. She is an English Access Micro Scholarship Program Alumna. Since Women2Women, Farida has become more confident and more interested in community service. She sees the world differently and is more aware about women’s rights issues, especially in Algeria. While in Boston, she met girls from different parts of the world and from various ethnicities and backgrounds. Farida appreciated the chance to see very strong and courageous girls standing up for their rights. The female leaders who spoke and taught about peace, courage, leadership, friendship, hope, and success all impressed her. After the conference, Farida became a true volunteer. She went to orphanages and hospitals near her town and visited many associations that work for women’s rights. This is Farida’s message: “Don’t miss your chance, apply for the W2W conference, it will totally change you and make you more aware about your community. It will undoubtedly be the start of a very successful life!”

Hanar, Kurdistan, W2W 2009
Hanar knows that Women2Women opened doors for her to become invested in the future of women everywhere. While living in northern Iraq has its advantages, the women’s rights situation is not a good one and Hanar quickly realized that. In 2010 she started an internship with six non-governmental organizations for women's rights. In 2011 she organized the first panel at one of the local universities in Kurdistan to discuss the issue of Female Gentile Mutilation. In 2012 she organized a campaign that reached more than 25 villages to spread awareness about women's rights while distributing Red Ribbons in honor of Iraqi women who have been killed. In 2013, she established the first English magazine for women in Iraq to spread awareness and introduce Kurdish women to the world. Hanar now has a TV program about women's issues on one of the Kurdish channels. She credits her success in part to Women2Women and the tools she learned during the program.

Fatima, Iraq, W2W 2012, 2013
In 2012, Fatima was a medical student and as part of her practical study she came across many cases of domestic violence and childhood marriage. So, when she was accepted to Women2Women as a teacher, she came to learn about how she could make a difference around these women’s rights abuses. Talking with female leaders throughout Women2Women gave her ideas, tools, resources, and inspiration. Returning to Iraq, she connected with various NGOs working on women’s issues. She organized an initiative to give lectures to high school boys and girls about domestic violence, its causes, its long and short-term effects, and how to prevent it. This work gave her the ability to go back to Women2Women 2013 and to talk to the new delegates about her action plan. Fatima continues to be a valuable part of the Women2Women network, especially for Iraqi alumnae.

Emma, USA, W2W 2010
Emma is a rising junior at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, VA majoring in Psychology with a minor in Poverty and Human Capability Studies. She is a member of the swim team and serves as an Executive Committee Member of SPEAK, an all female organization that advocates for healthy sexual relations on campus and seeks to prevent sexual assault through awareness, education, and bystander intervention. Her time at Women2Women opened her eyes to a number of social issues around the world. Emma’s experiences equipped her with a profound interest in these social issues, specifically the nature of discrimination and poverty. Women2Women helped her gain the skills necessary to communicate with people from various cultures. Emma volunteers regularly with the Campus Kitchen at Washington and Lee. In 2014 she worked as a Shepherd Program Intern at the Georgia Justice Project in Atlanta, which provides free legal representation to impoverished clients. In 2015, she intends to stay on campus at W&L and complete research on stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination. After graduation, Emma plans to attend law school and work for an organization like the Georgia Justice Project, representing people who have been marginalized by society and are seeking clemency. She has a special interest in aiding those with substance dependence and mental illnesses. Her personal experiences at Women2Women truly made a permanent impact on her life – her perspective, education and career path.

Sarah, USA, W2W 2011
Sarah entered Women2Women in 2011 as a small-town girl with lots of passion but no direction--and she left eight days later as a global citizen with 100 new sisters, worldwide connections, and inspiration that continues to this day. Returning to her high school, Sarah helped start a Women's Rights Club at her school, which raised nearly $1,500 for a Ugandan-based women's entrepreneurship organization and another $500 which was contributed to a micro-loan organization for women in developing countries. She also paired up students of her Women in Literature class with girls that she met through Women2Women in different countries, and they stayed "pen-pals" throughout the course of the class--and some even longer. She then went on to work as an intern for the Elizabeth Warren for Senate campaign, a female politician fighting for equality. The following summer, Sarah interned for a global organization called Verité, which works to promote fair labor and prevent human trafficking. Sarah has also worked as an alumnae intern for two summers. She is currently attending the University of Edinburgh, studying International Relations with a focus on human rights. Sarah is determined that “together, we will change the world: of that I have no doubt.”

Emily, USA, W2W 2012
Emily is currently a student at Barnard College in New York. Growing up, she did not expect to attend an all women's college, however, the sisterhood and the speakers at the Women2Women conferences changed her mind. Following W2W, Emily worked on a project for her theater class, in which Women2Women girls read a poem relating to women empowerment. Once the video is complete it will be uploaded to the United Nations website. W2W cultivated Emily’s curiosity for travel and global citizenship and she looks forward to learning more about the world as she goes through her college years.

Faryal, Pakistan, W2W 2006
Based in the rural communities of Balochistan, Pakistan, Faryal personally trained 200+ women on “Life Skills.” She also incorporated the W2W management style while designing several diplomas and training programmes for professionals and students in Pakistan. Faryal also introduced the Green Campaign at her job and won the CEO Challenge Award. She is currently enrolled in an MSc in Sustainability, Entrepreneurship and Design at Brunel University London and was a winner of the Brunel International Scholarship Award for 2014-2015.

Noor, Bahrain, W2W 2011
Noor is currently a second year student in Bahrain Teachers' College. She attended Women2Women in Grade 10 and says it was a life-changing experience for her. She went on to participate in a MEPI Student Leaders Program trip. Being a teacher allows Noor to impart important values and ideas to her female AND male students about women's rights and decision making. Women to Women gave her a life goal that she will forever pursue: “all women are leaders, I am a woman. I am a leader.”

Yasmin, Palestine, W2W 2013
After coming back from the US, Yasmin started noticing the way she looked at things were becoming more mature and objective. Her confidence increased and her critical thinking became sharper. Prior to her participation in Women2Women, she wanted to become a doctor, but she discovered during W2W the change she could effect if she took a different path. She found her passion in studying International Relations and Humanitarian Law, and Business Administration. Her action plan was to help women suffering from physical or psychological abuse, so Yasmin began volunteering with autistic girls who usually come from families that mistreat or neglect them. Additionally, she has attended several sessions held by the MEPI alumni program concerning people with disabilities, their rights and giving equal chances to everyone. She and her peers hosted a mini para-Olympic games.

Seden, Turkey, W2W 2010, 2014
After participating in W2W, Seden’s aim was to implement her action plan and start making a change in her local community by sharing W2W's impact with others. She organized a local conference in her high school, accompanied by an NGO, that focused on women’s rights on May 8th, 2011, International Women’s Day. Seden is proud to report that more than 200 high school students participated in this conference and she was the host and the organizer of the program. She spoke about Women2Women and showed many videos and photos of the program. Seden returned as an intern/staff member for W2W 2014.

Umulisa, Rwanda, W2W 2010
It was Umulisa’s dream to become someone who can make a difference. But it wasn’t was until she attended Women2Women in 2010 that her eyes were opened and she realized there is a sisterhood that shares the same visions as she does. She was amazed when she arrived at W2W and saw so many young women who wanted to stand together and "claim their seats at the table.” Umulisa started a club in Rwanda called Widen Women's Welfare. It aims to create a ray of hope in the lives of hopeless widows. She and her peers also managed to support young girls by paying school fees for them. We currently have a couple of six families of widows we support. She says that they strive for “a new kind of society with a new sense of community.”

Dina, Kurdistan, W2W 2009
Dina was only a teenager when she first came to the United States for Women2Women program. Six years later, Dina is a student at the Tufts Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. While in college, Dina was also involved with the Council for International Studies Students (CISS), a council that dealt with the International Studies major lectures, events, internships and other opportunities, which gave her the chance to be among the few students to organize the first AUIS international conference, “Liberty, Democracy, and New Realities in the MENA.” In the same year, she initiated the Jane Austen Society, which met every week to read and discuss Jane Austen’s novels relating it to Iraqi society and focusing on women’s issues, love and friendship. Dina conducted primary and secondary source research for study on how the new Turkey-KRG relationship is affecting nationalist sentiment among Kurds. She as also selected to be first student-intern at the Institute for Regional and International Studies (IRIS). She then interned as a reporter for Iraq Oil Report, the leading publication on Iraq and Kurdistan Region’s oil sector, reporting on and publishing articles with the Bureau Chief. Dina also interned at the Turkish consulate in Erbil, which gave her a deeper understanding of the Turkish policies in the Kurdistan Region. Dina says that “Women2Women was definitely a major experience in my life that empowered me and shaped me to become a stronger person and pursue my dreams and go beyond the obstacles and challenges.”

Anisa, Libya, W2W 2012
When Anisa first arrived at Women2Women in 2012, she was extremely shy and was apprehensive about being so far away from home, surrounded by strangers. But W2W changed Anisa’s outlook on the world. When she returned to Libya, she worked with a fellow W2W alumna on a 2 days workshop do educate young girls about women's rights in Libya. Anisa also implemented her action plan, working with an NGO on a 6-week program called “The Gift of Learning" to provide education for the unprivileged children. Anisa has also dedicted her time to working with Tawergha refugees in Tripoli. Anisa’s leadership during Women2Women led her to apply to other similar programs, and she was accepted.

Anfel, Algeria, W2W 2013
Upon returning to Algeria from Women2Women, Anfel was empowered to join the AIESEC—an international not-for-profit organization that provides students with leadership training and internship opportunities at for-profit and not for profit organizations. She is now a finance member and is on the organizing committee of the "we care project" which is a winter health awareness project. Anfel and her colleagues are hoping to educate orphans, women and young girls. She also collaborated with a club of debate trainers that work for the British council and created a group of 20 students from her university called Young Arab Voices. Anfel says that her experience at W2W truly gave her the tools and motivation to make a difference in Algerian society.

Nasma, Morocco, W2W 2012
One year after W2W, Nasma began to implement her action plan by doing a presentation in two schools about W2W, providing all the information needed to participate, followed by a debate about what the government is doing to improve women’s rights in Morocco. She also joined an association called  ‘ L’Association Marocaine de lutte contre la violence à l’égard des femmes, which aims to help women who are victims of violence, rape and all the unfortunate abuses women face in Morocco. Asma says that the suffering is what motivates her to create change and bring attention to those crimes. Asma is now proud to say that she is a freshman in the 6th best business school in France, Grenoble Graduate School of Business. She is pursuing a special program in her school that will allow her to receive a double degree in business and engineering. Her ultimate goal is to become a trader.

Meriem, Egypt, W2W 2012
Meriem found that one of the most important impacts of her Women2Women experience was that it helped her to communicate with girls from different cultures and backgrounds while sharing their experiences, concerns, fears and dreams. Knowing that as an Egyptian, she shared common problems with other girls helped broaden my perspective. For Meriem, it was incredibly empowering to search for common solutions and to have support when she needed it while planning her action plan or debating various issues during Women2Women. Seeing examples of success stories of individuals who survived hard conditions in their life journey was very inspiring to her. Meriem is now studying at The American University in Cairo as a scholarship student in LEAD (Leadership for Education and Development). In LEAD, Meriem completes a variety of training and simulations to learn how to be an effective leader and to gain problem-solving skills. She also got involved with organizing many conferences in Egypt.

Gizela, USA, W2W 2013
For Gizela, one of the most powerful aspects of Women2Women was learning about her own heritage from the girls from Iraq. W2W also inspired her to take classes such as Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, Coexistence and Conflict, and Social Justice and Social Policy. As part of her action plan, Gizela started a chapter of the UN organization “Girl Up,” that has raised money and brought awareness to her school community. In Girl Up, they transitioned from watching educational videos to having group based workshops about Malala Yousafzai, sexual harassment, female genital mutilation, wage equality, child marriage, sex selective abortion etc. The club first started with eight members but then grew even more and now they have twenty-two members. Gizela is currently a full merit scholarship recipient at Union College in Schenectady, New York. She plans on majoring in Economics with a minor in Arabic because of her exposure to women rights issues in the Middle East at Women2Women.

Tasnime, Algeria, W2W 2011
Tasnime is now a first year pharmacy student at Ferhat Abbas University, Algeria. After coming back fromWomen2Women, she wasn’t able to implement her action plan so she decided to start an association that aims to empower youth. They hosted events for International Youth Day 2013 and have planned speaker series and lectures with international speakers, as well as “EPower Tech Days,” a three day event all about technology and associated fields. Tasnime also leads her debate team. She can attest that Women2Women helped her realize that she is capable of so much!

Nawafel, Bahrain, W2W 2012
Back in 2012, when Nawafel applied to Women2Women, she wanted to spend her summer doing something interesting. Now, she says W2W was so much more than just a good summer. She felt so empowered sitting among such an inspirational group of young women from all over the world. They were such a diverse group, yet so united, shouting together “women’s rights are human rights and human rights are women’s rights!” Today, Nawafel is a student at the American University of Beirut. Because of Women2Women, she is eager for her voice to be heard and to achieve her goals. Women2Women made her realize how strong a woman can be!

Fatima, Morocco, W2W 2013
Since Women2Women 2013, Fatima has been involved in engaging the public in conversations and projects around the exploitation of foreign domestic workers, with the help of researchers and lawyers in the field in Singapore. In addition, she has been actively involved in spreading awareness on feminism and gender issues through her university's Gender and Intersectionality Group. She is currently a mentor in CAMA (College Admissions Mentors for Africa), an international community of college students and professionals who provide advice and assistance to young Africans seeking university admission, and who have demonstrated the potential to make a difference on the continent. Fatima is currently a student Yale-NUS, where she is pursuing a degree in Economics and Global Affairs. Last year, Fatima interned with Ashoka India, an organization that supports social entrepreneurs around the globe. She worked with the ChangeMaker Schools Project, which aims to create a network of innovative schools to share best practices and develop an entrepreneurial curriculum. Women2Women allowed Fatima to engage with young leaders who are passionate about service, but more importantly, women who are actively working to make the world a better place every day. W2W provided her with an invaluable opportunity for networking, education, and inspiration.

Nikita, India, W2W 2009
After attending the Women2Women conference, Nikita attended Manipal University and graduated with a Bachelors of Science in Audiology and Speech and Language Pathology. At university, Nikita was co-editor of her college magazine, played numerous sports, participated in the drama club, and volunteered. As a volunteer, she helped organize volunteering outings to orphanages and to cancer rehabilitation units for children. At the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Nikita provides therapy for children and adults with speech and language impediments such as autism and aphasia. She also works with psychiatric patients as a part of her research plan that primarily focuses on individuals with schizophrenia. Nikita is very proud of herself for completing university, succeeding in her chosen field, and for having the opportunity to help people. When looking back on her experience at Women2Women, she describes the conference as “life changing.” She detailed the “wonderful” young women she met from various backgrounds and the power women have as individuals and the necessity for women to realize that power. She talked about the myriad of issues women face and the urgency to “erase female oppression.” Nikita is however optimistic that “with sincere hard work and motivation (women) can be the change we want to see in the world.” Additionally, Nikita learned that it is possible that women can have a career while be a women’s rights activist. Through negotiation and leadership workshops and the ability to converse with women from all over the world, she has gained a tremendous amount of confidence that has guided her career path today. Nikita is eternally grateful for this opportunity and aspires to one day be a source of inspiration for the women of upcoming Women2Women conferences.