Meet Briar Woods’ Nadia Al-Akhras

The opportunity to have an education is something Nadia Al-Akhras isn’t taking for granted.

As a child, Nadia lived in Jordan for four years. She grew up in a different culture, where she learned to read, write and speak Arabic. Every summer, she returns there with her siblings. She said she feels blessed to have grown up in the minimalistic lifestyle that Jordan offered because it’s given her a unique perspective on the privileges she has here in the United States.

“I’m here because I tried hard to be and because I had people supporting me through,” she said. “I get to look back and really appreciate it all because I know that in places like Jordan, a lot of the girls don’t even have the opportunity to go to school.”

Because of this, Nadia said she honed in on her academics and her involvement within Briar Woods’ Career Center to make the most of her high school experience. She credits career resource assistant Jan Develli for giving her guidance each step along the way: whether it was applying for a standardized test or college application, or direction in general.

“I should be going down to VCU in the fall. And that was a huge deal for me and if it weren’t for her I would have never even considered it,” Nadia said.

Nadia has not decided on a major yet, but does have an idea about what she’d like to do after college.

“I don’t really want to be behind a desk, behind a computer for the rest of my life,” she said. “I’d rather make little differences on the people around me, and maybe that can have a butterfly effect into something greater. Who knows? Anything’s really possible.”

Caroline Boras

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