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The Parthenon

Column: Common Misconceptions


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It hurts me when people have a bad idea about my country or think of it in a bad way. People now think if you are Syrian, they immediately take it to the point where you are a refugee and start building their own ideas in their brains.

I am here at Marshall paying my own tuition fees, but even if I am a refugee where is the shame in that? If I needed help while my home was destroyed and my home country is all vanishing? Since when do we differentiate between humans whether they are Syrian, American or Mexican? Whether they are black or white? Or whether they are Christians, Muslims or Jews?

We are all humans in the end, born the same way and breathing in the same air. At one point in life, we are all going to need help. Today, if you open your door for me when I need help, on another day you’ll find my door open for you when you need help.

Syria is the most amazing place I have ever seen. Before the war, we used to have a lot of American citizens visiting Syria for a tour to see its amazing ancient places and it is also the same reason why I came here to the United States. Because I know that it was the best place for me to get my education and, at the same time, I have always wanted to study in the United States and get to know more about it and wanted to explore all its amazing states and places that are full of nature and different lifestyles that interested me so much to come here.

I feel so happy when I talk to my friends about my country and introduce them to my culture and let them try our food. I am a Syrian student here at Marshall University. I’m so proud to be Syrian and will be proud to say that I am learning and will graduate from Marshall University in the United States because my success will represent the place that taught me.

This column was submitted as an assignment for an INTO Marshall writing class.

The instructor, Saba Gebrehiwot, can be contacted at [email protected]

“Common Misconceptions” is a weekly column series that gives students, faculty and staff the opportunity to address common misconceptions and misunderstandings of and about their culture, race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity.

Columns may be submitted to

[email protected]

Submission does not guarantee publication.

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