Meet Luzan Munayer, a young student from Jerusalem whose dreams are shaped as the intricate forms of Palestinian historical buildings. Due to the restrictions and the financial load of life under occupation, studying architecture seemed like a far-fetched dream as her parents could not afford to pay for university.
“Since I live in Jerusalem and I appreciate the great historical architecture of this city, I insisted on studying it at a place where I could get the sincerest education,” she says. Thanks to a scholarship granted by the Hani Qaddumi Scholarship Foundation, Luzan has been studying architecture at the American University of Beirut since 2012.
“My dream is to use my major to write books and publications, and to create institutions aiming for a greater appreciation of architecture in Jerusalem. I trust that if used properly, it could serve as a proof of existence and long years of our resistance,” she says.
“Resisting occupation is also about preserving historical buildings from historical manipulation,” says Luzan, referring to the appropriation of buildings of national heritage. However, far from a negative outlook on reality, Luzan feels hopeful about what youth can do to build a better future. “I believe than an educated society that works hand in hand as a whole body would definitely contribute to positive change,” she says.
This interview is part of a series on education in Palestine through the work of Hani Qaddumi Scholarship Foundation. Read more of their stories on their website www.hq-sf.org.