Building bridges with Palestinian Diaspora- “President’s Palestinian Diaspora Grant-PAS Program”

Recognizing the role of youth in Diaspora, and seeking to contribute to the community service and intellectual pluralism in Palestine and around the world, Birzeit University and through its international program “the Palestine and Arabic Studies Program (PAS)” unveiled a new grant for students’ in Diaspora to come and learn Arabic in their homeland-Palestine.

This year, the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics said that it has recorded a Palestinian population of 12.1 million people worldwide, the majority of whom live outside of the occupied Palestinian territories. This can be negative, but it could also benefit our efforts to preserve the collective Palestinian identity, through creating a vibrant Diaspora, who can contribute in the nation building while they are in Diaspora.

“We especially hope that this initiative will create a long term engagement with our brothers and sisters in diaspora. Palestinians need to gather to forge a unified diaspora; a diaspora of intellectuals, decision-making politicians, scientists, professionals and artists who will push a way out for Palestinians”, said University President Abdullatif Abuhijleh.

“Birzeit University President’s Palestinian Diaspora Grant” is a partial grant for the academic year 2017-2018 that provides Palestinian students and young adults from various parts of the world with the opportunity to combine the study of the Arabic language with social science courses about Palestine and the Arab World.

The Director of the PAS program Tina Rafidi said that Palestinian Diaspora youth could carry out their studies while experiencing the political and social realities of their ancestral homeland Palestine for one full semester; fall or spring or summer.

“Through intertwining with the culture of their country of origin, Palestinian youth can contribute in maintaining and enriching the Palestinian narrative abroad”, Rafidi commented.