The road to peace is for everyone to travel: Mayar’s story

mayar-imageIn 2014, Mayar Tharowat won a Daughters for Life scholarship and left her home in Egypt to attend Wilfrid Laurier University in Canada.

As a student of the STEM school for girls in Egypt, Mayar studied hard and developed her interest in science, particularly Physics. After taking a chance and applying to Daughters for Life, Mayar moved forward in her journey of education and success.

With a few nerves, a lot of courage and the compassion for others, she bravely traveled halfway around the world to study at Wilfrid Laurier.

Now in her 2nd year of studies, Mayar has founded a student robotics club, attended the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) conference, and won the President’s Gold Award for her academic achievements.

Next month, she will attend the 2016 One Young World summit in Ottawa – a gathering of the brightest young minds from across the globe to meet and debate the biggest issues the world is facing today.

Daughters for Life supports young women to help realize their potential and continue the pursuit of peace in the Middle East, as we believe in the power of women like Mayar.

  
 

Harder than achieveing something, is to keep it going

“Studying abroad at Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada, is a life-changing experience. I’ve been introduced to a completely new different life from the one I lead, back home. The most amazing thing about studying in Canada and more specifically at Laurier is that I’m not only discovering one culture but several instead. It gives me a new perception of the world and of other cultures around me. My first year was a great start for me, academically and personally. I quickly built relationships with my roommates and colleagues. Most of them are people from all over the world. I was astounded by the generosity and kindness of the people I have met here, and that is what made my experience so refreshing. Besides my social life, for my academic achievement in the high school, I received President’s Gold Award for the first year; however, harder than achieving something, is keeping this achievement going. For The President’s Gold Award to be renewed, I had to maintain a high GPA, and here I am, taking it for the second time!

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Mayar, receiving President’s Gold Award at Wilfrid Laurier University

As a kid, I was obsessed with Sciences, Computer, and Robotics: my happiest moments were when I was sitting by my father’s side, looking at him building some science projects. This is what made me so passionate about science. When I came here, I got a little bit frustrated because I didn’t find a club or an activity to engage myself in scientific projects like Robots and to participate in science fairs or competitions. Therefore, I decided that if it was not there, somebody had to do it. And what if this person was me? Fortunately, with the help of some friends interested in this project too, we were able to start our Robotics club in Laurier officially this year.

We founded this club to encourage participation in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) at Wilfrid Laurier University through participation and competition in the areas of Robotics. We also wanted to offer a productive and fun learning environment for people of all levels of Robotics and Programming experience to explore the areas of robotics and expand their personal and academic skills in that field.

One of our objectives is to raise interest and spread awareness within our University and our community about Robotics and its importance.

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Mayar with Hiba, the 2nd DFL Scholar at Wilfrid and Mayar’s roommate too!

Dr Izzeldin Abuelaish is more than a founder, he is like a father to us

Actually, all I have achieved would not have been possible without the generous support from Daughters for Life Foundation and Wilfrid Laurier University. Some people may think that the relation between the scholar and the foundation is all about providing money, but in my case with Daughters for Life Foundation, it is a home away from home.

Last year, when I first arrived in Canada, along with the other DFL scholar, Hiba, I was a little nervous about my new life and this major change, but I found myself surrounded by Dr. Abuelaish, his family, and Ms. Jacklin. I was happy to find them waiting for us at the airport to pick us up. We even went to a Mediterranean restaurant in Toronto. Frankly, I felt like I was home! Then they drove us to our new home in Waterloo, and it didn’t end there, I was positively surprised when Dr. Abuelaish started carrying our big luggage and helping us move in. I realized he is more than the founder, he is a father for us!

We literally see ourselves as daughters of the foundation

There is a lot to say about his generosity and kindness: last year I was able to go to the WISE conference in Toronto and present my project, among other passionate young scientists, with the support of Daughters for Life.  Dr. Abuelaish and his family, thankfully, hosted my friend Hiba and me, for two days in Toronto; we got to know how wonderful and kind they are. Beside Dr. Abuelaish and his family, I also consider the whole Daughters for Life board as a family to me. Ms. Jacklin and Ms. Alia, were there for my Award receiving ceremony last year, to congratulate me. Anyone in my place would have felt alone, as my parents weren’t there, but thanks to Daughters for life and their continuous support, I could enjoy my success. That’s what so special about Daughters for Life Foundation: we can literally see ourselves as daughters of the foundation.

With Daughters for Life’s support, I can see myself chasing after my dreams, doing what I am passionate about, to the best of my abilities. My advice for you is to keep your goal in front of your eyes so that it keeps encouraging you to work harder and harder.

My goal is to find a greater goal. I want to keep growing and you should too!