Wednesday, June 6, 2012

VTLCI Students Place Second and Third in VATESOL Writing Contest

By Kama Weatherholt

The Virginia Tech Language and Culture Institute is proud to congratulate two of our students, Abeer Almaimouni and Hamdan Alohosani, for their success in the VATESOL Writing Contest!
This year’s contest prompted the students to write about the topics of advocacy and inclusion.  Abeer and Hamdan wrote thoughtful and insightful essays that related these issues to the experiences of ESL students.  Abeer, a student at the Blacksburg LCI, tied for second place with her essay titled “ESL Students, Campus, and Community.”  Hamdan, who studied at the LCI in Falls Church, received third place for the essay “ESL Community and Inclusion.” 

Abeer Almaimouni, an electrical engineer from Kuwait, is studying in the United States on a full scholarship from Kuwait University (KU).  After receiving her bachelor’s degree, she briefly worked as a part-time teaching assistant at KU before becoming a trainee engineer at the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor.  She then worked as an electrical maintenance engineer at Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC), an experience that proved difficult. 
Abeer accepts award from Don Back
Abeer explains, “The fact that I was the first female engineer in the Electrical Maintenance Division represented a major challenge to me. I had to work in a very male-dominant working environment, and I needed to work in hazardous areas and very harsh physical conditions. After working for two and a half years in the maintenance field, I had earned a great deal of respect from my colleagues and my superiors for my hardworking nature and dedication.”   

After her work at KNPC, Abeer decided that it was time to return to the world of academia.  She graduated from the LCI program this May, and will now be moving on to the University of Washington in Seattle to begin her graduate studies in electric power engineering.  After obtaining her PhD, she will return to her home country to join the faculty of the Electrical Engineering Department at Kuwait University. 

Hamdan Alohosani
Hamdan Alohosani came to the Falls Church VTLCI from the United Arab Emirates.  Upon completing high school, Hamdan received a prestigious Distinguished Student Scholarship, a prize that is awarded to only twelve high school graduates throughout the UAE each year. 
Hamdan recently completed the advanced level at the VTLCI with an outstanding academic record.  He held perfect attendance and a 4.0 GPA over four terms of study.  He will continue his hard work in the mechanical engineering program at Virginia Tech this fall. 

In addition to his study of English, Hamdan has always enjoyed and excelled in science, and he won several global competitions while in high school.  He also explains that he likes the state of Virginia because of the beautiful scenery and the friendly people.   

No comments:

Post a Comment