If you want to make your dreams come true, the first thing you have to do is wake up, believe in yourself and don’t lose hope.
The beginning of my journey
My name’s Hany, I'm from Syria and I need your help to continue my Higher education. This is how my story goes, since I was 8 years old I had a dream of becoming a scientist like the ones on National Geographic. I love science and wildlife so it all adds up. After I finished high school and got my diploma with an average of 96.7%; I found out that this field of studies doesn’t exist here in Syria. I was devastated especially because I come from a low-income household and financially I can’t afford to follow my dreams abroad.
I began studying business management at the faculty of Economics but I realized It wasn’t fulfilling and I have the energy to do much more. After a while I heard of a place called HIAST (Higher Institute of Applied Sciences and Technologies). It is one of the best scientific facilities in Syria; it awards an Engineering Diploma (5 years undergraduate).
What was more appealing for me is that they teach the basic sciences in the first 2 years such as Math, Physics, Chemistry …etc, and the top students are sent abroad to Europe to continue their studies so there was my window of opportunity to follow my academic studies abroad. So I applied and was accepted at HIAST, but there was a catch that I had to sign a contract with them that says “they pay for my tuition during the 5 years of my studies and give me a monthly salary in exchange for working with them after graduating for at least 10 years.”
The Crisis, and more
Unfortunately, it all fell a part in the first year I started at HIAST as the crisis in Syria started and all the scholarships abroad were canceled due to the sanctions on my country. what’s sad and kind of ironic that I thought HIAST would be the place to help me reach my dreams but shortly it became my prison. From that point life started to get harder by the day in every aspect, especially after I lost many of my good friends and family members in this war, but I didn’t give up I worked really hard on my studies and now I’m starting my 5th and final year in Materials Science and Engineering at HIAST with one year left to get my degree and I’m about to graduate next semester from the faculty of economics.
It was very challenging for me to study in 2 universities and pass in both each year but I’m very ambitious and I work hard to get what I want. However, now I’m facing a new challenge which I want to get a master degree and PhD in Materials Engineering, but due to the contract I signed with HIAST, I must work for them for at least 10 years and I’m not allowed to obtain a passport and set foot outside of Syria unless I’m able to pay them in exchange of the years I studied there and terminate my contract. This way I’ll be able to continue studying abroad.
There's still a hope
My professor Dr. Yomen Atassi (one of the brightest minds in her field with a PhD in physical chemistry) she was the one who believed in me and she advised me to follow my dreams in pursuing high academic degrees and reach my full potential but this isn't possible as long as i'm in Syria and that was the push I needed to start this campaign. During this year I’ll be working alongside with my professor on a project "synthesizing new superabsorbent polymers for agricultural and medical applications” and accordingly we’ll be able to publish few papers and articles about our work in scientific journals. I already contacted IIE organization (Institute of International Education) and they're willing to help me get a scholarship to continue my postgraduate studies but the main obstacle remains which is to terminate my contract and be able leave Syria.
Studying aside, I'm a very good cook specially when it comes to Syrian dishes. Music is essential in my life, I listen mostly to pop music and my favorite artist is the princess of pop Britney Spears. I'm a very outdoorsy guy, I enjoy any activity in the nature like Hiking and Camping but sadly I haven't been able to do these activities, since the war started 6 years ago travelling became very difficult and most of the camping sites are no longer safe. During the weekends and holidays I volunteer at an animal shelter and work among other volunteers to help stray and injured cats and dogs.
This war has severely affected the animals too as it did to humans, many people fled the war and left their pets behind to suffer in the streets, most people here are cruel to animals and enjoy torturing them, what's even sadder that the government's solution for the stray animals is to poison them or to go on shooting sprees and kill every animal in sight. This might be shocking to read but it's true, the Shelter is established by volunteers and the government has nothing to do with it. as volunteers we made it our mission to rescue these poor souls and help them find a safe place to live away from the danger they're facing. (please see the links below for more information about "STAR" Syrian Team for Animal Rescue).
A dream might come true
My dreams are bigger than to be stuck in a dead-end job in Syria with no ability of growing as an individual. I want to reach my full potentials and to be able to play my part and contribute to humanity in every way possible. I want to make a difference and leave my mark in this world, unfortunately I lack the financial ability to pay my debts to HIAST and have the chance to continue my education. In the end I believe that the purpose of life is to contribute in some way to make the world a better place for us to live in.
I wish you know how hard it is to live in a country torn by war like Syria where hopes and dreams for a better future is all we have. I know the war in Syria is the talk of the hour around the world and everyone has an opinion, with or against the government ... etc. but you should know that here we are just people trying to fend for ourselves in this crises, struggling to live day by day, I know it's very difficult to help everyone here but if we tried to help one person at a time we'll get there, with a little love and support we can achieve the impossible.
So please consider giving me a hand to reach my dream with a small contribution or by sharing this campaign to your friends. I would greatly appreciate your kindness.
Don’t hesitate to contact me for further information.
Thank you and God bless,
Email: [email protected]
Links regarding STAR shelter: