Dr. Yacoobi was honored to receive the 2015 WISE Prize for Education. A prestigious award given to those who are tireless advocates for the right to education. “I know from my life that education gives power, status and opportunity. I see women who are smart, intelligent but did not have opportunity so I gave them that. It is education and not guns that can transform society and give us a peaceful tomorrow. “ Sakena
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It was a particularly exciting time at one Yacoobi Private School in Herat this past September as a ceremony was held to honor the top students with gold medals.The event was attended by Dr. Yacoobi, the Governor of Herat and the Head of the Women's Affairs Department among many others. The awards went to the top student in each of the following: logic, chemistry/physics, sport, speech/music, English and the leadership project. There were 300 people at the event including 155 females. The ceremony continued with songs and music by the students from the school. There was recitation of poems and reading of articles about peace in English and Persian, along with the appreciation and congratulations of other speakers during the ceremony.
There were seven other students honored either from the gold medal program or the cash prize program who are in the third to eleventh class. These seven of the best students also had great grades but couldn’t quite meet the gold medal program requirements. They were gifted with a cash prize as a congratulation for what they had achieved and as an encouragement. These were the students with the best behavior, attitude, morals and personalities who were also the best in at least one subject.
Dr. Yacoobi had this to say about one of the students, “Four years ago we hired a widow as a cleaner for the school. When she started, we found out that she had a small daughter, Zahra, who was not going to school. Her mother said, I don’t have the money to send her to school, so we gave her a scholarship. She is now in the 4th grade and is the first in her class. She is very little and very smart and creative. Recently, we had a school-wide competition in many areas of study. The top students in each category received gold medals and the second-place students received cash awards. Zahra won second place in two of the categories—art and calligraphy. And, even though she is young and very little, she was chosen to be the announcer for the ceremony because of her presence and speaking ability. She was amazing as an announcer! It brought tears to my eyes as I watched this tiny, little girl confidently and with great self assurance announce better than most adults. Zahra, I thought, is a future leader of Afghanistan."
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