Youth in Focus: An Interview with Shorooq A.

Shorooq A. is from Nablus, Palestine. She graduated in 2014 from Al-Quds Open University with a degree in in Social Sciences Teaching Methods. Shorooq models respectful behavior for children in Core AM.

What made you apply for STEP?!

I was interested in applying for TYO's STEP! program so I could gain work experience. I'm a new graduate and really need to focus on building a strong CV as well as improving my skills. I would like to work as a teacher, so it is very helpful for be to be able to observe the Core Teachers and practice various teaching techniques on the children in the classroom. Finally, I feel it is my responsibility to do what I can to help children within my community.

What new skills have your learned through the program?

The most important skills I've learned thus far are leadership skills and teaching methods. Volunteering at TYO gives me the opportunity to lead a group of children in the classroom, which allows me to practice speaking in front of a group as well as practice explaining concepts to young children. This ties in closely to developing my teaching methods techniques. I am able to both mimic the Core Teachers as well as practice my own style of communication with the children to see what works and what areas I should improve. I feel much more responsible having had this experience at TYO.

 What are your career goals and do you feel that STEP! helped you get closer to those goals?

I’m planning to work as a Social Sciences teacher in a private or governmental school. The various trainings- both program specific (like the psychosocial trainings) and the job readiness trainings (CV building and interview skills)- are helping me by giving me the skills I need to be successful once I have a job. Additionally, by allowing me to practice teaching methods in the classroom, I feel I will be fully prepared to lead my own class when I get a job.

 What do you think is the biggest challenge for youth like you in the current labor market?

One of the main challenges for today's youth is the inequality between the number of available jobs and the number of youth seeking employment. Job opportunities are very limited in Palestine. Volunteering is very useful in that it gives us practical work experience, which will help distinguish us as candidates in a very competitive job market.

-Interview conducted by Volunteer Coordinator, Ruba Hafayda

This program is funded by the Abdel Hameed Shoman Foundation (AHSF)