CPISP Scholar Marwa Alalawi graduated this summer with honors from Phillips Academy Andover, where she was an active member of the campus community. During her two years at Philips Academy, Marwa immersed herself in various activities and received numerous awards and prizes, including the Martin Luther King prize by the Office of Community and Multicultural Development.
“A big part of my Andover experience revolved around engaging myself in controversial social topics, which was reflected through receiving the Martin Luther King prize, a financial award given to a few students that exemplify the leadership qualities of Dr. King,” she explains. “I was not afraid to let my voice be heard both inside and outside the classroom environment.”
On Martin Luther King Day, Marwa led a workshop entitled “Islamophobia in the US,” to shed light on misconceptions about Islam. She was also President of the Muslim Student Association, and helped co-found the World Interfaith Harmony Week with the Catholic Student Fellowship and other faith groups on campus.
“The initiative came as a response to the urgent need of faith based dialogue on campus in order to unpack stereotypes and prejudices. Guest performer Rohina Malik beautifully drew on the experiences of Muslims in the US post 9/11 in a wonderfully knit one-woman-play, and guest speaker Professor Stephen Prothero spoke about the importance of religious literacy.”
Eager to reach out to her student peers and faculty, Marwa joined as a World Partner for guiding new international students at orientation, and was selected to give a special tribute to retiring history teacher Dr. Kathleen Dalton, a leading expert on Theodore Roosevelt, at an All School Meeting.
A devoted writer and doodler for KidSpirit Magazine, Marwa had one of her articles published in the Huffington Post about the power of patience and comfort of bedtime stories: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kidspirit/powerful-patience_b_8913370.html
“As I reflect on my two-year journey at Andover, I cannot but think of how enriching a place Andover was for me academically and personally. Andover as a whole honed my sense of autonomy and encouraged me to chase after opportunities and challenges. All these leadership-mingled experiences were vital to my personal growth. I am more than thankful to have been part of PA’s diverse community.”
Marwa will be starting her undergraduate degree in Engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology this Fall.