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Amna, currently residing in Canada, is diligently pursuing a Master of Health Sciences in Medical Genomics at the prestigious University of Toronto. Her active engagement with the Global Tertiary Refugee Student Network underscores her commitment to facilitating higher education access for refugees, while her distinguished role as Director at OUR (Opening Universities for Refugees) exemplifies her dedication to this noble cause.
From 2020 to 2023, Amna served as the Program Coordinator for CERTE Malaysia, contributing significantly to CERTE’s recognition as a Best Practice in the Global Compact on Refugees. During the past five years, she displayed unwavering leadership as a youth advocate at the Dignity for Children Foundation, empowering marginalized youths. Her profound commitment to gender rights is evidenced by her role as the focal point for Women & Girls at Risk, where she effectively raised awareness about sexual and gender-based violence within the refugee community.
Amna’s journey commenced when she sought refuge in Malaysia in 2014, hailing from Pakistan. Despite facing formidable challenges, her remarkable resilience and tenacity propelled her to secure a scholarship to the University of Nottingham, where she attained a B.Sc. (Hons) in Biomedical Science, distinguished by awards such as Best Research Project and Best Research Proposal Pitch. Her academic achievements culminated in her being honoured as the Valedictorian of the class of 2020 at the School of Pharmacy, University of Nottingham, Malaysia.
Gül İnanç (Founder) is a diplomatic historian of modern West Asia and has published books and articles on modern Turkish diplomacy, cultural heritage education for peace, religious architecture of Singapore, forced migration in Southeast Asia. Her recent publications include Access to Higher Education: Refugee Stories from Malaysia (co-authored), Routledge, 2018, and Forced Displacement and NGOs in Asia Pacific (co-ed), Routledge, 2022. She is the co-founder of Centre for Asia Pacific Refugee Studies (CAPRS) at University of Auckland, New Zealand and served as the founding co-director between 2020-2023.
She has received the Koh Boon Kwee Scholars Award in August 2016 for inspirational teaching at Nanyang Technological University, NTU, Singapore, where she was affiliated between 2012-2022. She has worked as an expert curriculum developer on UNESCO’s Understanding Shared Histories: A Teaching Package which has been translated into Khmer, Indonesian, Thai and Vietnamese.
She has co-developed educational materials including text books for K12 students on the history and cultural heritage of Cyprus and a Singapore religious heritage game project at the NTU. She is currently based in Savannah, GA and is affiliated to Guilford College, NC as a visiting scholar.
OUR envisions a world where every refugee has equal access to higher education, empowering them to rebuild their lives, unlock their full potential and contribute to the betterment of their communities and the global society.
OUR’s mission is to facilitate and advocate for accessible higher education opportunities for refugee worldwide. Through strategic partnerships, innovative programs, and community engagement, we aim to break down barriers, provide comprehensive support, and foster a welcoming enviroment that nurtures academic excellence, personal growth, and intercultural inderstanding among refugee students.
We are committed to enhancing refugee self- reliance by equipping them with the skills and knowledge needed to rebuild their lives and contribute positively to society. We seek to empower refugees to become self-sufficient and independent indivisuals.
We strive to expand access to third- country solutions, creating pathways for refugee students to pursue higher education beyond their host countries. By working with universities and academic institutions in various countries, we aim to offer diverse opportunities for refugees to continues their education and access new possibilities for their future.