Mohammad Almishlawi, a third-year student in the Department of International Relations, was selected to be one of the Ban Ki-Moon Center’s first four global citizen scholars to participate in the 2018 European Forum Alpbach, held in Alpbach, Austria, in August.
The Ban Ki-Moon Center for Global Citizens is an independent, nonprofit, quasi-international organization headquartered in Vienna, whose mission is “to empower youth and women worldwide to thrive and act as global citizens in a peaceful and prosperous world.” The Center was founded by former UN secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon and former president of Austria Heinz Fischer.
Established in 1945, the European Forum Alpach is “an interdisciplinary platform for science, politics, business and culture aiming to create a dialogue across the generational, ideological and other lines that divide people.” The annual forum and other events held throughout the year address current socio-political questions and connect “international decision makers from all sectors of society with an interested audience and committed young people.”
To be selected, each scholar had to show that they were active as a global citizen in their community. During the forum, the scholars had a busy schedule, including opportunities to engage face-to-face with the Center’s board and co-chairs. One event was dedicated to the scholars sharing their stories and plans for their future work as global citizens.
Mohammad, who is from Lebanon, experienced life as a refugee firsthand but was enabled to pursue higher education by the Unite Lebanon Youth Project (ULYP). He now gives back to his community as a volunteer with ULYP and, as a committed advocate for education for all, concentrates his efforts on goal Number 4 of the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals: Quality Education.