Pakinam Moussa


John Carroll University student

Where are you from?

What was it like growing up?
I grew up on a farm in Egypt and lived with my family. I am the oldest of three sisters. My parents valued education so much so I had to commute to school for an hour every day because of the good reputation my school had. Family in Egypt means extended family as well and there was a huge emphasis on spending summer time with them and celebrating successes with them.

Why did you decide to leave your home country and study in the United States of America?
I spent my high school in South Africa so I always felt the urge to travel for university and get an education that can help me return home and be able to help my community. I applied for universities in the States, Europe and in the Middle East. I chose to come to JCU in the US because I liked their support system for International students and most of my friends were in the US studying.

What were your first thoughts about coming to the United States of America?
When I first arrived in the US, I arrived in Atlanta then NYC then settled in Cleveland for University. I was shocked by how different each city is, shocked in a good way! I loved Cleveland because of the similarity in the Midwestern culture shared with back home.

Why should we welcome immigrants and refugees?
I believe that welcoming immigrants and refugees adds more to our diversity and sense of learning about the world around us. Welcoming them is also a humane thing to do since it is hard to say NO to those who have no place to go to. If their homes were okay, they would have never left.

Why is it important to travel abroad?
It is very important to travel abroad because you simply see another culture from its people’s perspective. Additionally, you get to make friends from diverse backgrounds and go on adventures that only add to your skills, memories and intellect. I had the chance to spent my high school years abroad in south Africa, my current college years in the US and I also travelled on semester at sea and to other youth forums in different countries. This time spent abroad made me more independent and more open to any challenges. Most importantly, it made me eager to learn about our differences than be afraid of them. and love to know more people who