Impact Story

Students in California connect with peers in Morocco, Egypt, and Lebanon

University of California Berkeley

As part of its virtual exchange, the University of California Berkeley paired its students with students from the American University in Ifrane, Morocco. Students from thousands of miles away were given the opportunity to come together for a semester to discuss and learn from each other about complex topics related to identity, gender and culture.

Reflecting on the course, Annie from Berkeley noted that disagreements among the students are what allowed her to get the most out of the program, which “enabled me with the tools to speak articulately about issues, and to feel more confident about taking a stance and really [promote] intercultural understanding.”

“One of the most interesting things about the collaboration with Berkeley students was that it was an opportunity to bring people from different backgrounds to discuss the topic of gender inequalities,” noted Ali, a student at Al Akhawayn University. “Since people were coming together from different backgrounds, that made the discussion rich.”

"[The program]… enabled me with the tools to speak articulately about issues, and to feel more confident about taking a stance,” Berkeley student

California student

The UC Berkeley also paired students in Arabic-English and Kurdish-English language exchanges with students from Iraq, Lebanon, and Egypt, and ran a project-based online course on the public health implications of the refugee crisis in the Middle East and North Africa for students at Berkeley and in Iraq.

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