Jahaad Shairi was awarded a 2022 CIEE Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship, a fully-funded summer leadership program for students of color that travels to Ireland and focuses on peace, social justice, and conflict resolution.
The CIEE Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship program is a 4-week study abroad experience designed to help future changemakers enhance their leadership and intercultural communication skills then return home inspired and better prepared to agitate for positive change in our world.
Offered by RIT study abroad partner, CIEE, Jahaad is one of only 16 college students across the U.S. awarded the 2022 Fellowship. As a Frederick Douglass Global Fellows, Jahaad will spend four weeks in Ireland exploring conflict and injustice from various perspectives and the leaders who sought to affect positive change for their communities and their countries. The Fellowship honors the legacy of the abolitionist and statesman who himself traveled abroad in 1845 and experienced first-hand efforts to overcome religious injustice, gender injustice, and racial injustice.
Jahaad, a 2nd-year Film and Animation major, pursued the award to learn more about the history of Frederick Douglass and participate in a hands-on learning experience while exploring Douglass’s legacy. “As a future director and screenwriter, my job is to tell stories. This experience will give me in-depth knowledge of some of the greatest stories to ever occur. I hope to take what I gather and reapply it into my own work in all ways possible,” says Jahaad.
Jahaad’s experience in Ireland will explore the impact that influential leaders have had on social justice movements and critical peace and conflict resolution efforts worldwide. “There's so much of our world to explore and connect with, and the more we do so, the more we begin to have a great understanding of the world around us and ourselves within it,” says Jahaad.
While in Ireland, Jahaad will visit Cork, Belfast, and Derry, meeting with leaders, activists, guest speakers, authors, and artists.
The CIEE Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship is highly competitive, with only 16 students chosen from over 700 applicants for the 2022 award. Awardees were selected based on their leadership, effective communication, experience in agitating for positive change, and a commitment to cross-cultural respect and understanding.
The Government of Ireland and student exchange provider USIT Ireland will co-sponsor the 2022 Frederick Douglass Global Fellows in Ireland to honor the 175th anniversary of the meeting between 27-year-old abolitionist Frederick Douglass and the Irish reformer Daniel O’Connell in Dublin in 1845.
An RIT study abroad affiliate partner, CIEE is committed to helping every student – regardless of socioeconomic background or academic major – access a transformative study abroad experience. Each year CIEE serves 10,000 study abroad students.
The Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship was launched in 2017 as part of CIEE’s commitment to increasing access to study abroad by students in underrepresented groups.