Scholar Achievements
Sarah Ameen attends 51st International Achievement Summit

CPISP Scholar Sarah Ameen, who is completing her graduate studies at Columbia University, was invited to attend the Academy of Achievement’s 51st International Achievement Summit in September 2014 which took place in San Francisco, California. The 3 day event brought together 100 young delegates from around the world, allowing them to meet and intermingle with accomplished leaders in the fields of politics and public service, the arts, science, and business. Sarah recounts her experience:

“It would not be an exaggeration to say that the 51st Academy of Achievement Summit was by far one of the most memorable and humbling experiences of my life. When I arrived in San Francisco for the first day of the summit, I initially had no idea what to anticipate. I never expected to interact with some of the most exceptional people in the world. The summit brought together delegates and honorees from a diverse range of backgrounds. Scholars, scientists, innovators, diplomats, entrepreneurs, musicians, and artists shared their successes, journeys, and passions. So many remarkable individuals whom I had previously admired from afar were able to connect with the delegates on a more personal level.”

“Some of my most memorable highlights from the summit include a moving speech by Star Wars creator George Lucas, a discussion with Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz about the economic implications of a reunified Korea, a dazzling performance by Diana Ross, breakfast with geneticist Dr. James Watson, and an exciting after party with CNN news anchor Wolf Blitzer and Google Cofounder Sergey Bryn. What especially struck me about the honorees was their incredible level of humility and their willingness to personally interact with the delegates. They collectively shared a relentless determination to pursue their passions and excel in their respective fields. However, it was especially inspiring and refreshing to learn about their initial struggles and difficulties. In many of the cases, successes were attained only through rejecting societal expectations, taking risks, and embracing the fear of the unknown. Barriers were dissolved as these stories humanized these real-life heroes and I began to relate to them on a more personal level.”

“The summit offered me food for thought and allowed me to reflect on my own goals and journey. I learned so much from both the honorees and delegates, and I left the conference with a renewed sense of purpose and optimism. The summit was much more than a celebration of achievement. It was a celebration of the human spirit and the betterment of our communities and the larger world. The conference continues to inspire me and I only hope to one day make a positive difference and give back to my community. Words fail to convey my gratitude towards the Crown Prince International Scholarship Program for nominating me and for the extreme generosity of Catherine and Wayne Reynolds. It was both a great honor and privilege to partake in this life-changing experience.”

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