'UWC Atlantic College is committed to make education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and sustainable future.'
What comes to your mind when I say Middle East?
You are more likely to say a war zone. But actually it is not just a war zone. It is a home for more than 381 million people, and it means a lot to them.
This year we have got the opportunity to organize the MENA conference again which is on 24th-25th of November 2017.
The Middle East and North Africa Conference has been always a big thing at UWC AC. It is mainly due to the fact that this region includes a wide diverse types of food, religions, race, languages, etc...
The conference focuses on the MENA region, through the eyes of the students. This year, we have decided to talk about the daily life in the Middle East in a way people can get to know the region and its conflict better from a personal perspective and not just dry information and facts. This is an opportunity for both staff and students to get involved, and ask questions that don’t usually get asked. It is a milestone for better future of the Middle East and North Africa, in the college and out.
People have showed interest in the region, but many times they didn’t get to hear it from the students around them-which that UWC is all about.
This is a fascinating conference for the whole college, where we are going to share cultures, stories, and experience. Extending on this point, every UWCer at AC will have the chance to experience a multi-religious prayer event, where it gives you the experience of trying things that haven’t even thought of doing it.
However, we have a diverse group of external speakers coming to hold lectures during the conference. One of them is Amit Meyer, who is a UWC AC Alumni 2007-2009. He is an activist and journalist who will be looking at how UWC changed his life and directed him to different paths toward peace.
'In the Arab world, as in all regions of the world, women have been put down since the dawn of time. However, where there is oppression, there is resistance. Thus, there has been and still is a huge number of women who push the envelope and refuse to stay within the small spaces allocated to them. These women push further and rise higher than is expected from them, or anyone else for that matter.” Some MENA students as well as non-MENA are going to perform mini- TEDX during the conference, which is about anything that interests them, particularly in that region. For example we have a student who is performing about “What is like to be a girl in the Middle East?'
The current Atlantic College physics teacher Asbjorn Damhus is performing a TEDX sharing his personal story: 'In 1977-8 I travelled on a traditional, Sumerian type reed boat (the TIGRIS) from Iraq to Bahrain, Oman, Pakistan and Djibouti.'
- By Fadia Chedaheh (second year student at UWC Atlantic College)