Majd Baniodeh, ‘11
“Seattle University does an exceptional job of promoting global awareness. I’d like to see students in every field encouraged to travel. Then we would have a comprehensive and holistic approach to the world.”
A child of war-torn Palestine, Majd was already a citizen of the world when she arrived at Seattle University. When she was just 15 she came to the United States on her own to complete her education. Her world view had been shaped in equal measure by the violence she experienced growing up and the “non-violent resistance” modeled by her parents, both nurses, that inspires her today. “My parents always said, ‘Education is our strongest weapon.’”
Coming to Seattle for high school, young Majd was shocked to discover how little Americans knew about the world, and felt compelled to educate people. Upon entering Seattle U, she was gratified to find a more culturally-aware population. “People at Seattle U have a dedication to global awareness.”
Eager to develop her cultural competency, Majd took advantage of a Seattle U internship in Djibouti on the Horn of Africa. There the trilingual international studies major provided translation and research services. But her real education came in witnessing the pervasive human trafficking of women and girls. Majd tried to intervene, but found the situation to be “a lot bigger than I am.” Upon returning to Seattle U, she captured her impressions in an impassioned paper. “I carried that message and gave the women a voice.”
Such experiences provided the cornerstones of Majd’s global education, but she credits her Seattle U professors with developing in her the critical-thinking skills and confidence she would need for an international career. Professors from economics to English became mentors who prepared Majd for the path she would follow after graduation – working for notable international agencies such as Global Washington and winning acceptance to a prestigious graduate program in applied international studies.
“My Seattle U professors saw in me a powerful woman and gave me the tools to get where I wanted to be.”