Arzo and Jawad are training to be a doctor. In Afghanistan.
That means studying in a country undergoing reconstruction, where freedom is something that cannot be taken for granted. It also means making enormous efforts to give patients the care they need. But how do you do that when there are significant gaps in the teaching programme? Such as anatomical surgery, for instance.
Motivated students like Arzo and Jawad can make a difference in their country. And Leiden University can help them to do that. We can supplement the programmes these students follow in their own country with scientific knowledge acquired in Leiden.
Leiden University wants to build on its core principles of promoting freedom and talent, by offering these students valuable knowledge that they would otherwise not have access to. We want to offer medical students courses in subjects such as anatomy and surgery, so that they are better equipped to treat their patients and to improve life expectancy in their local area. In the field of Law, students will be offered lectures in the field of criminal law and human rights, giving them knowledge that will be valuable for their future careers.
“…because I think that every little bit helps, to give students from Afghanistan the opportunity to come and study here. ..” (Rosalien)
“…During the years I studied Political Science I learnt that especially meeting students from all over the world stimulated me to renew my views and adjust my opinions…” (Frank)
Our reason for launching this action at this point in time is that our University is celebrating its 440-year anniversary in 2015. We want to make this year extra special and one way of doing that is by inspiring as many students as possible, sharing with them our scientific knowledge, our freedom and our country. As a university community we want to allow others to experience some of the joy of this special celebration year.
We are therefore asking all our staff, students and alumni to support our Leiden anniversary project.
We want to invite Arzo and Jawad – and with them as many other students from Afghanistan and South Africa as possible – to come to Leiden to improve their learning potential. We want to share with them knowledge that is not available in their own country, so that they will be in a better position to improve conditions in their own country.
But we can’t do it without your help!
We are focusing on Afghanistan and South Africa because Leiden University already has special links with these countries. Leiden has been working for a number of years with the Keihan Foundation that promotes the interests of Afghan students, giving them the chance to study abroad.
And when Nelson Mandela received his Leiden Honorary doctorate during his visit in 1999, the University committed to supporting the reconstruction of South Africa to give the country a better future.
We need € 5,500 for every student who comes to study in Leiden. This is the amount needed to pay for the travel costs, living expenses, accommodation and study for one student over the course of a short and intensive four-month training programme. It means we can also provide a ‘buddy’ for each student to introduce them to Leiden and the Netherlands.
Medical student Kumar Honaryar studied in Leiden from January to April 2013. In his words: ‘When I look back on my stay in Leiden, it’s difficult to put into words how grateful I am for the opportunities this visit gave me. It opened up the world for me in a way I could never have imagined. I feel so privileged to have had this experience.’
Help us to spread the knowledge that Leiden has built up over 440 years of freedom, and to share this knowledge with students living in countries where such knowledge is vitally needed. This celebration year will be more memorable if we can extend a helping hand to as many students as possible.
We will be calling on you to show Leiden at its best. Show your appreciation for the freedom and opportunities that you have enjoyed, and the knowledge you have acquired by giving someone else these same advantages.