NNAAC Fellow Bushra: I want to bridge identity gaps between people

NNAAC’s Transformative Leaders Fellowship Program (formerly the Youth Fellowship Program) develops crucial leadership skills in select university students and recent graduates across the country through an ongoing partnership with our various member organizations. These aspiring young adults learn more about the issues facing Arab American communities, see how nonprofits are managed and work toward creating a personal professional growth plan.

Get to know Bushra Alfaraj, one of our 2016-17 fellows, in our interview with her below.


Bushra Alfaraj

Al-Bustan Seeds of Culture | Philadelphia, Penn. 
Drexel University - Recent Graduate, Masters in Digital Media


Q: Why did you join the Transformative Leaders Fellowship program? 

A: In addition to gaining leadership skills through the Fellowship, I would like to network with fellow Arab Americans who are just as passionate about the community as I am, and more importantly to contribute to the Arab American community and help enrich it however I can.

Q: What personal or professional goals do you want to achieve during this program?

A: I am passionate about bridging identity gaps between people, and know that one needs to address their own self before reaching out to people from different backgrounds. I have been fortunate to be surrounded by diversity my entire life, but that does not mean I am oblivious to the injustices and discrimination that take place within identity hierarchies. I am also very interested in the nonprofit sector and how nonprofit organizations are constantly overcoming the odds to achieve their goals.

Q: How does this program fit into your future plans? 

A: Having recently conducted social research on Arab identities in media narratives, I hope this program can help freshen my perspective on Arab American identities as well as help me understand my role as an Arab American wanting to continue researching Arab/Arab American identities in the future.

Q: Describe yourself in three words. 

A: Humanitarian, curious, perseverant.


The National Network for Arab American Communities (NNAAC) Transformative Leaders Fellowship Program (formerly the Youth Fellowship Program) increases the capacity of our member organizations to provide additional support to their communities, while at the same time develops crucial leadership skills in the fellows themselves. The program engages college students and/or recent graduates over a nine-month placement with a NNAAC member organization. Fellows are recruited by NNAAC members locally, and in partnership with universities. Learn more.

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