House of Representatives passes Malala Yousafzai Scholarship Act
Last week the United States House of Representatives passed the Malala Yousafzai Scholarship Act. The act encourages the State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development to continue to support Pakistani education initiatives, especially those for women. The act would also expand the number of scholarships available to Pakistani women under the Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program. The Act was named after Malala Yousafzai in honor of all of the hurdles she has overcome in her life to become the more prevalent education activist in the world.
The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Ros-Lehtinen, said that it was imperative to promote women’s education in developing countries that limit women’s rights. Ros-Lehtinen said, “we know that access to education is a game changer for any society. A society in which women have unfettered access to the education system expands the horizons not just for the girls and the women involved, but for everyone in their community and their nation.”
The next step for the act to become a bill is for it to be passed in the Senate. We will keep you updated on the Act’s status.
Embattled Ideologies: I am Malala and the Question of Women’s Education in South Asia Event Today
The UW Lubar Institute for the Study of the Abrahamic Religions is hosting an expert panel today from 4:00-6:00 pm in the Sheldon Lubar Faculty Commons, Room 7200, in the UW Law School.
The event brings together four expert scholars on Islam and Education to discuss the challenging and complex questions surrounding women’s education in tribal Pakistan, the historical encounter of Islam and modernity, and the cultural problematics of international aid.
If you are interested in a deeper intellectual conversation surrounding these issues you will not want to miss this event!
Malala Yousafzai and children’s right activist Kailash Satyarthi were jointly awarded the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize today. The Nobel Prize board announced that Malala and Kailash were awarded “for their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education.”
The Taliban took over the Swat region of Pakistan where Malala lived in 2008. The Taliban immediately began closing schools for girls. In 2009 Malala began her fight for education. Malala was only 11 when she began anonymously blogging for the BBC about her struggles to receive an education and the fear she lived in everyday. That same year she came forward and announced who she was. Malala publicly criticized the Taliban for not allowing girls to go to school. All Malala wanted was an education.
Two years and one day ago Malala was shot in the head by Taliban men on her way home from school. The world was shocked that a child who was only 15 had been so callously and cruelly attacked. Malala’s assassination attempt brought international attention to Malala and her cause.
Malala had a long road of healing ahead of her, but she never forgot about her fellow Pakistani classmates who were still fighting to receive an education. Malala and Shiza Shahid created the Malala Fund, an organization dedicated to helping all children receive an education. Malala had every right to be angry after her attack, but instead she said “I don’t want revenge on the Taliban. I want education for sons and daughters of the Taliban. Malala, who is only 17, is the youngest ever recipient of a Nobel Prize.
Malala has inspired an education movement that brings together people from all across the world. Her work through the Malala Fund is truly making a difference, and she has no plans of slowing down. I for one expect nothing but greatness in Malala’s future.
Comment and let me know what your favorite Malala quote is.
Malala nominated for 2014 World Children’s Prize
Malala has been nominated for the 2014 World Children’s Prize. The organization shared a video of Malala’s friends and other schoolgirls from across Pakistan explaining what Malala’s campaign for girls’ education means to them.
The World Children’s Prize is an organization that contributes “toward a more human world in support of the rights of the child; it is the world’s largest annual educational program teaching young people about the rights of the child, democracy, and global friendship.”
Three candidates are nominated each year by children around the world, and then the children vote for the winner. Candidates are chosen for being child rights heroes, and all three receive money to further their work with children.
The organization is unique in that it is focused on the children’s experience. Twice a year there are World Children’s Prize press conferences where children present and answer questions from reports about their stories. The only rule of the press conferences is that adults are there only to listen, not talk! (Quite the opposite of the usual child/adult interaction) The organization has a very information website that can be viewed here: Website and they also have a blog that shares the stories of children from across the world: Blog
First Lady Michelle Obama Calls on World Leaders to Match Courage of Malala
The First Lady, Michelle Obama, gave a moving keynote address at the third annual Global Education First Initiative event. Michelle’s speech focused on providing quality education for all girls across the world. Obama challenged world leaders to match the courage and commitment of girls who are fighting for their right to education.
I’m thinking about girls like Malala. I’m thinking about those brave girls in Nigeria. I’m thinking about all the girls who will never make the headlines who walk hours to school each day, who study late into the night because they are so hungry to fill every last bit of their God given potential.
Universal education is a Millennium Development Goal that the United Nations had committed to achieving by next year, but as the year ticks away it is unlikely to achieve the goal. Michelle stressed that quality education for every child and the empowerment of women and girls needs to be on the post-2015 deadline agenda. The speech ended with her again calling world leaders to action by reminding leaders of the girls who are sacrificing so much just for the chance to get an education.
If we can show just a tiny fraction of their courage and their commitment, then I know we can give all of our girls an education worthy of their promise.
To read a news story on the speech, click here.
To read a transcript of the speech, click here
Lastly, to watch part of the speech, click on this link: Video of part of Michelle Obama’s speech
Malala Yousafzai Featured in Windows For Peace Project
|A museum staff member in front of Malala’s Peace Window
The Peace Museum in Vienna Austria has teamed up with local business to open a new exhibit, the Windows for Peace Project. The project uses windows in the Museum as well as local businesses in downtown Vienna to feature influential figures throughout history that have devoted their lives and careers to peace.
The project has chosen over 150 “peace heroes”, including Malala Yousafzai. The project opened this June, and will continue to expand over the next two years. The Vienna Peace Museum hopes that people who stop and look at the windows will be inspired to integrate peace into their daily lives. The Museum and window sponsors are aspiring to “change the world into a better, more peaceful place, one window at a time.”
If you’d like to know more about the project you can visit their site here
|Peace Heroes are exhibited in downtown Vienna
UW-Madison News reports on use of Go Big Read book on campus
|Malala speaking to the United Nations in the Summer of 2013
The University of Wisconsin-Madison News site released an article this morning entitled, “Campus community reading ‘I Am Malala’ as semester begins.”
The article discusses why Chancellor Becky Blank chose the book from a list of possible books with a theme on service. The Chancellor told the 5,500+ incoming freshmen and transfer students at convocation that “Malala’s story is about the value of doing something – anything, even when it’s scary and even when you’re not sure it’s the exact right solution -rather than sitting around feeling hopeless.”
The article also talks to members of the campus community that have chosen to use the book this fall. Over 35+ courses have decided to use the book in their course material. Disciplines range from anthropology, English, enviornmental studies, nursing, political science, and education.
A group new to the Go Big Read program is the Lubar Institute for the Study of the Abrahamic Religions. The group was established to promote mutual understanding and civility among Jews, Christians, and Muslim after tensions arose following 9/11. To learn more about the different courses and groups participating in Go Big Read this year read the entire article by following this link: Campus community reading ‘I Am Malala’ as semester begins
UW-Madison Women & Leadership Book Discussion
October 15, 2014
March 11, 2015
4:00-5:30 pm Union South
I Am Malala
Malala Yousafzai and Christina Lamb
Book discussion led by the UW Women Deans
“When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education. On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, when she was fifteen, she almost paid the ultimate price. She was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive. Instead, Malala’s miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York. At seventeen, she has come a global symbol of peaceful protest and the youngest nominee ever for the Nobel Peace Prize. I Am Malala is her remarkable story.”
To register for one of these events, please visit:
October 15, 2014 Book discussion:
March 11, 2015 Book Discussion:
**UW-Madison Women & Leadership events are generously supported by the UW Foundation Women’s Philanthropy Council**
Other partners include:
UW-Madison Committee on Women in the University
UW-Madison Office of Human Resource Development
UW Women Deans
Questions: Contact Carrie Jensen, firstname.lastname@example.org, 265-8982
Dr. Asifa Quraishi-Landes: 2014 Wisconsin Festival of Ideas: A Background on Islamic Law and Constitutionalism
The Go Big Read book this year, “I Am Malala”, focuses on a religion and region of the world that many readers will be unfamiliar with, however throughout this fall we will be providing resources for readers to gain a deeper understanding of the themes and background of the book.
The first resource is from Dr. Asifa Quraishi-Landes, an Associate Professor of Law at the University of Wisconsin who specializes in comparative Islamic and U.S.constitutional law. Asifa presented in the Distinguished Lecture Series at the 2014 Wisconsin Festival of Ideas on her current work and shared a background of what Islamic Constitutionalism means. Asifa provided definitions and the background of terms that we hear often in the media today, such as sharia, itjihad, and fiqh.
Asifa has served as a public delegate on the United States Delegation to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women, the Task Force on Religion and the Making of U.S. Foreign Policy for the
Chicago Council on Global Affairs, and as advisor to the Pew Task Force
on Religion & Public Life. You can find out more about Asifa, including her publications, educational background, and interests here: http://email@example.com
“I Am Malala” TimesTalks
Malala Yousafzai was interviewed by New York Times correspondent Jodi Kantor for The New York Times TimesTalks series. Jodi asked about Malala’s life in Pakistan under the Taliban regime. She also had Malala talk about her campaign for universal education and how she is working to achieve her goals.
Malala displayed a humble sense of humor and a great deal of maturity for a 17 year old during the event. The interview allowed viewers to see a more personal side of the young activist. Malala discussed how much she misses her best friend, but that she does get to Skype her often to catch up and also to hear what is happening in her homeland of Swat Valley. Though not all the information she hears is hopeful. Malala expressed her frustration that girls she used to attend school with are engaged to be marry at only 17 years old and will no longer be able to continue their education.
Malala’s prevailing message throughout the interview was that Malala shared her story to inspire others to create change, she said “YOU should stand up for your rights, YOU should speak up.” Malala is currently working on education projects in Pakistan, Jordan, Kenya, and Nigeria. She shared that her own mother is now attending school five days a week to learn to read and write since she had never received an education. In a touching moment, Malala asked her mother to stand up in the crowd to introduce herself and explain why she is now learning how to read and speak English.
Watch the TimesTalks video below and share with us your thoughts on the interview.