Reflections of the students and facilitators of Masari
With the end of the current fall semester of the 2017-2018 academic year, Birzeit University students have completed the first learning station of an interactive learning experience as part of the Leadership & Active Citizenship Program – Masari, which is aimed at all first-year students from all majors.
The program, which will continue its second learning station in the spring semester, was launched to bolster the university’s role in developing a renewed vision for learning, and to incentivize students to plan their lives and engage in their surroundings from the first day they step foot on the university’s campus.
The program will be implemented through an accompanying co-curricular activity, which students would undertake in line with their academic programs and other curricular and extra-curricular activities, as the primary complement to their classes at the university.
Masari started by seeking first-year students accepted for academic year 2017-2018. The program will accompany them, in the first three years of their college careers, through six creative learning stations at a rate of one station per academic semester.
In its first year, the program focuses on self-exploration, self-discovery, self-awareness, and self-management through the Personal Competencies and Career Path stations; in the second year, it will emphasize the other and the community (active citizenship skills – diversity, empathy, and sharing) through the Debating and Citizenship stations.
The third year will highlight the development and implementation of student initiatives that stem from the students’ outlook on Palestinian national contexts and community priorities through two stations focused on community entrepreneurship.
Students and facilitators reflections on Masari:
- “Masari… a name chosen as a motive for students to begin charting the path of their lives from their first day at the university, in line with their academic programs and extra-curricular activities, so that they are ready to face life’s demands, challenges, and variables.” – Vice President for Planning and Development Dr. Mirvat Bulbul
- “As students, Masari helps us to explore ourselves, build our characters, focus on our distinguishing competencies, and allows us to enthusiastically enter the job market.” – Omar Bakri, a student in Masari
- “Masari is a one-of-a-kind addition to the personalities of students and graduates, as it emphasizes the learning of life skills that they haven’t learned before.” – Director of the Samih Darwazah Institute for Pharmaceutical Industries Dr. Hani Ishtayeh
- “Masari is a pioneering program and a source of pride and accomplishment, and I consider it the main source (if not the only) of future leaders that are capable of affecting change. I have all the respect for those who oversee this program.” – Professor of Chemistry at Birzeit University Dr. Jony Esteban
- “The program has contributed to building our personal and creative skills, and made us more confident in ourselves and our abilities.” – Ahmad Barghouthi, a student in Masari
- “I have noticed good interaction between the participating students, especially that the program contains no tests or a grading system like purely academic ones. A large number of students have been introduced, for the first time, to the basics of C.V. building and to exploring their own career paths.” – Eyad Jadallah, Public Relations Office
- “Masari is a life training program that covers facets which are usually not included in academic programs. It contributes to building the students’ life skills and a generation that has expertise, positive outlooks, and ethics, all of which will reflect on the Palestinian society in the future.” – Professor in the Palestine and Arabic Studies Program Dr. Sa'd Nimer
- “Masari has helped me to engage with the university community and introduced me to new colleagues and new personalities.” – Bahya Harbash, a student in Masari