Getting the Most from AUC
After four years of an exciting and fruitful journey at The American University in Cairo (AUC), Zeinab Abd El Aziz, the first Molly Bartlett Endowed Scholarship recipient, reflects on the impact AUC has had on her character and world view.
Expected to graduate in the fall of 2016, Abd El Aziz, studying electronics engineering with a minor in business administration, has big dreams for her life after graduation. She aspires to become an AUC donor to provide scholarship opportunities to deserving students to have the same experience she had at AUC. She also hopes to become a professor and join the AUC faculty. “My long term ambition, however, is to become Egypt’s communications minister,” Abd El Aziz said excitedly. “My education at AUC has equipped me with the skills, knowledge and expertise to let me aim high and dream big.”
Abd El Aziz also hopes to be supported again to pursue her master’s and PhD degrees. In spring 2015, she joined the photonics research team headed by Professor Mohamed Swillam, assistant professor in the Department of Physics. “I am so passionate about research work in general, and I want to explore this field earlier before graduation so I can delve into it in my master’s degree.”
In addition to research work, Abd El Aziz is a member of the Volunteers in Action community service club working with orphans. “I enjoy working with charitable organizations as it not only provides poor orphans with what they want, but it helps raise their spirits and make them more optimistic,” she shared. According to Abd El Aziz, giving back to the community should be a major priority in our society. “I worked in many community service clubs, and in all the activities I participated in, I find joy and a sense of fulfillment. I am always keen on attending the weekly visits to Dar El Orman orphanage, organized by AUC’s Office of Residential Life."
Abd El Aziz was also a member of the logistics committee of the Electronics Engineering Association (EEA), noting, “I was so happy to join the EEA, which is an association made by electronics students specifically to relieve our stress from our studies.” As a logistics member, Abd El Aziz went and bought supplies to renovate the electronics engineering lounge, and she took part in planning the closing event for graduating students in electronics engineering. “It was very beneficial for me to join this association because it helps me know many other students in my major and I enjoy working with them.”
Highlighting the importance of the Career Center activities and workshops, Abd El Aziz is taking full advantage of the services provided to be well prepared for her life after graduation. “I personally find the Career Center activities very helpful. They guide me to prepare for my future career and they foster my knowledge about the market through their events and employment fairs,” Abd El Aziz explained. AUC’s Career Center educates students and alumni for lifelong career planning, focusing on identifying career objectives, designing and implementing job search strategies, as well as exploring experiential learning, employment and postgraduate opportunities.
Reflecting on her overall experience at AUC, Abd El Aziz said, “The AUC community is a very diverse community that is extremely beneficial in developing one’s character. Also, the method of teaching, the state-of-the-art equipment and the outstanding and proficient professors distinguish AUC from other universities. I am so lucky and fortunate to be studying at this great institution.”
The Molly Bartlett Endowed Scholarship
The Molly Bartlett Endowed Scholarship was established in 2011 to provide scholarships to Egyptian students who attended a public high school. In addition to covering academic costs, this scholarship offers its recipients opportunities to participate in Leadership for Education and Development Program (LEAD) activities.