Maryam Laly

Maryam Laly
Arabic Studies

As an Afghan woman, born and raised during the decades of war and conflict, I was not very optimistic about attending college. However, my life changed when I was accepted to attend a year of high school in the United States through an exchange program. Many doors of opportunities have opened since that enabled me to finish high school and attend St. Lawrence University. Without the generous scholarship from SLU, I would have not been able to pursue my dream of attending college in the U.S. St. Lawrence University has provided me with the opportunity to pursue my dreams in every sense. I have been able to take classes, interact with professors, staff, and classmates that have altered the way I see the world. SLU has helped me pursue internships in my area of study through the internship fellowship program.
I speak Farsi/Dari, intermediate Pashto and Urdu. At St. Lawrence, I have been able to study Arabic, a language that I have always wanted to learn. I was even able to pursue my Arabic studies further by attending the 8-week intensive Middlebury Arabic Summer School. St. Lawrence enabled me to attend this program through different departments funding. It has truly been the most rewarding four years of my life. I have gained so much knowledge, respect, and gratitude and I owe it to this university and the people in it.
I plan to pursue a Masters degree in the field of Diplomacy/Peace and Conflict Resolution in the near future. I hope to work for an international organization on issues related to women's empowerment, human rights, and international relations in the Middle East and South Asia.