They enrolled, they studied and they rocked: we asked five Palestinian graduates who were sponsored by the Hani Al Qaddumi Scholarship Foundation to share their ideas for a better transition from high school to university and here’s what they said.
1. Visits to Universities: For young graduate Jihad Basem, seeing what university is like before deciding on a career path was fundamental. “I had many visits to Birzeit university while I was at school and had the chance to ask teachers and other students about the courses. It really helped me prepare to pick a major when time came,” he says.
2. Student advisory programs: “It would be great if there were advisory programs for the students to choose what field to go to because I noticed that a lot of students were unsure were to go,” says young engineer Derar Muallah. Having career guidance helped his peer Akram Dweikat transition easily, he says. “In my experience, it is important to have orientation programs on what each specialty is and what university life is like. Students want to know how their future job is related to the market place for real,” he explains.
3. Activating parents’ role in students’ awareness. For Amal Shanty, a young graduate specialized in Human Resources, involving parents in the process of choosing a career path is essential. Jihad Basem agrees, as his parents’ support during transition between high school and university represented a turning point. “As they both teach courses in universities, their guidance helped me a lot; they told me a lot of stuff about university life before entering it.”
4. International summer schools, an optimal way not only to help students transition but also to encourage more high schoolers to pursue higher education. “These schools could give basic training on research methods, and communication and presentation skills training,” says Lana Judeh.
5. Scholarship tutorials: For high school students, the idea of obtaining a scholarship can seem an unattainable dream, especially if they do not know how to apply. “It is important not only to know all the choices that I have for my undergraduate studies, but also what scholarships are available and to have someone who can explain how they work,” says Gazan graduate Lana Hijazi, who obtained an HQSF scholarship to study arts in the USA.
To read more articles about education in Palestine and to be inspired by Palestinian students who are striving to improve their futures, visit the Hani Qaddumi Scholarship Foundation official website.