College education for 10 talented students in BiH

by Bosana Foundation
College education for 10 talented students in BiH
College education for 10 talented students in BiH
College education for 10 talented students in BiH
College education for 10 talented students in BiH
College education for 10 talented students in BiH
College education for 10 talented students in BiH
College education for 10 talented students in BiH
College education for 10 talented students in BiH
Student gathering in Banjaluka
Student gathering in Banjaluka

BOSANA FOUNDATION

Scholarship and Personal Development Program

Quarterly Report

July-September 2017

 

Executive Summary:

Summers are usually a time for relaxation and spending time with family and friends. Our students got a little bit of a break at the beginning of summer but the second part was filled with fun activities and preparations for the exam season. We had our student gathering in Banjaluka at the beginning of August, while September was reserved for final exams and graduations.

Students and Program Update:

September is the busiest month for us and our students; graduations, new student applications and final exams are all scheduled during this month. Many have completed their last requirements and are ready to start taking classes, to begin with the new semester and new academic year.   Our students had another successful year. We have a number of students that graduated this year. We have accepted five new students, three for Bosana scholarship program and two that will be part of professional development program. We also transferred three of our professional development program students who were selected to the program last year into our scholarship program. This means that now they will also receive financial assistance from Bosana Foundation.

As mentioned, apart from few exceptions, students who are part of the professional development program do not receive monetary help, but they are part of all other Bosana activities and have access to all resources available to our scholarship recipients.

This year we have quite a few graduates and couple of our students will finish their masters.  Nine students have either graduated in September after passing last of their exams or they will graduate by the end of the year. One student will also complete his Masters degree by 2018.

Highlights of the quarter:

  • Our student Katica has successfully defended her master thesis on July 5th and she received her master’s degree from the University of Mostar, Faculty of Law.
  • Our student Selma passed her state exam last day of August and is now a certified technician.
  • Our student Anela graduated with highest honors last week of September. Her diploma paper theme was highly praised by her professors, thesis she chose was never researched in BiH and they believe that she could continue working on her project and apply it in practice. Anela will be starting with her graduate studies this October.
  • Our student Denis graduated one day after Anela, with highest grade and now he holds his BA in genetics. He will be starting his graduate school in October this year.
  • Sanela defended her diploma paper at the end of September as well. She got her BA in Electrical Engineering and she will start taking graduate classes as of October this year.
  • Mirzet also passed all his exams and is now working on his master’s thesis. Right now he is finishing up his field work and is hoping to defend his thesis in the next couple of months.
  • Benjamin presented his paper at the 8th International Symposium on Art and Science in Life Potential Development held in Split, Croatia this September. We are very proud of Benjamin and his work, because only a handful of students get an opportunity to present at an event like this one. His paper was titled “Theatre Performance as a form of psychosocial support for children and parents of children with leukemia”.

Bosana student gathering was held in Banjaluka this year. It was different from the previous gathering, since it was in the more urban area and we were staying in city rather than in the rural areas. The heat was an undesirable aspect, but that did not stop students from enjoying their time in Banjaluka, visiting local monuments and hiking the most popular trail on the outskirts of town.

Our three students from Banjaluka, Amar, Milena and Dragana organized this gathering. First day was started with group games and competition; groups of students followed clues and were tasked with taking pictures of monuments around town in order to reach designated destination. First group to figure out the meeting point was the winner. Next day, or at least the first part of the day, was designated for hiking. After the long hike we visited local beach because one cannot visit Banjaluka and not spend time by Vrbas River.

In the evening we gathered in the local park to discuss student progress, their project success, future projects and ideas on how to improve the time they spend volunteering so it can be useful once they start looking for employment. Students were happy to see each other and exchange their ideas; the time was short but well spent. We are all looking forward to the next gathering.

Additional updates:

One of Bosana young volunteers, currently in high school, approached Bosana Foundation wanting to help kids in Bosnia and Herzegovina. He invested a lot of time and effort into the realization of the Eagle Scout Service project. From the very start he pointed out that he didn't want to just execute any project that would satisfy his Eagle Scout requests -- he wanted more and with the support of his amazing parents, friends and fellow Scouts, he outdid even his own expectations. Adi managed to collect close to 40 backpacks filled with school supplies for the marginalized youth in BiH that crave education but are missing basic needs to help them realize that dream. His success lays not only in the backpacks that he managed to collect but in the way he did it and the community of people that he got involved to work together and care about the youth in BIH.

Bosana Foundation founder and our program coordinator of the Afterschool Program in Zenica joined forces with the association of national minorities in order to find the most disadvantaged families. Carefully selected group of Roma children received backpacks filled with school supplies to prepare them for the upcoming school year.

Backpacks delivery to children in Zenica
Backpacks delivery to children in Zenica
Our student Katica at her graduation
Our student Katica at her graduation
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BOSANA FOUNDATION

Scholarship and Personal Development Program

Quarterly Report

April - June 2017

 

Executive Summary:

Bosana 8th Annual Benefit featuring Bosnian Born Exhibit was an evening filled with art, live music and diverse audience who came to support BIH art and education and empowerment of BIH youth. We were particularly honored that our former student, Selma Selman, who is also an artist herself was part of this exhibit and she addressed the attendees during our annual event. Aside from the support of our attendees, we are above all grateful to our amazing 30+ volunteers who helped make this event possible.

Bosana received close to $50,000 through ticket sales, art sales, and donations, which will help us continue running our scholarship program for the upcoming year. The “Bosnian Born” Exhibit has visited 4 cities around the US and has been seen by more than 100,000 individuals, and it also helped raise close to $20,000 for our programs over the years.

Students and Program Update:

Exam season is in full swing; most students have already completed their first round of exams and are now preparing for the new round that will start in July. In the past couple of months our students have completed their midterms and have started with the final exams. We will know the final results next month; however, results our students received so far are very promising.

This year we have quite a few graduates and couple of our students will finish their masters.  

Students expected to graduate are: Anela Z., Denis S., Imane B., Jasmina P., Jasmina F., Josip J., Sanela M., Svjetlana P., Katica G. (master) and Mirzet O. (master).

Highlights of the quarter:

  • Mirzet O. once again was one of the best students in his graduating class. He passed all his exams in a record time and is now ready to complete his Masters Degree. He has already started sending his job applications, responses have been scarce and he understands that today’s job market is difficult, but he is determined to find employment in Bosnia and Herzegovina. He has sent over 400 applications to various institutions looking for employment.
  • Adnan H., who graduated recently, already received a job offer. He is waiting to receive his visa papers since his job will take him to Germany. We are sad to see him leave Bosnia but we are very happy that he has a very bright future ahead of him.
  • Benjamin A. attended VIII International Scientific-Professional Conference “Improving the Quality of Life of Children and Youth” which was held from 23rd-25th of June in Arandelovac (Serbia). The conference addressed life of young people, quality of their life and how to improve and support them. Benjamin submitted his paper called “Drama workshops as a model of raising cultural awareness” and was invited to actively participate and present his findings. This was a great honor for Benjamin as well as opportunity for his future research.
  • Amar T., one of the students accepted last year, will be part of the Erasmus student exchange program in the following academic year. He will be spending his next semester in Maribor, Slovenia taking classes at the University of Maribor. Spending a semester abroad is always beneficial for every student, it changes their perspective on culture, language skills and it teaches them new life experiences and they come back home ready to take on new challenges. We are happy to continue supporting Amar in his new academic endeavor.

Additional updates:

Aside from our annual event and beginning of exam season, this quarter has been fairly ordinary. Our students have focused all their energy on getting the best results possible.

We are also very excited about our annual gathering and team building.   This year the plan is to visit Banjaluka in the first half of August. It should be a nice break from the exams, students will get to visit a new part of the country that some of them have never visited and spend time with their Bosana family. Yearly team-building exercises are always beneficial to us and our students.

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Mirzet in Barcelona
Mirzet in Barcelona

Executive Summary:

First quarter of the year is very busy for Bosana students, classes end and shortly after exam season starts. Our students have been very successful during spring exam season and many have passed all their exams with flying colors. Annual event preparations are in full swing and the first day of the next quarter Bosana will host Bosnian Born Exhibit once again, this time in Los Angeles, California. We are really excited to have our former student, who graduated from the Art Academy in Banjaluka also attend our annul benefit. As an artist herself, she will also exhibit some of her art for sale.

Students and Program Update:

Shortly after the exam season is over and our students got a few days to rest, they have to start with the new semester. We are very happy to report that majority of our students had great results after the exam season and they are excited to start with new classes and new semester.

There were a few students that had trouble with a class or two, but they already have a plan how to resolve the issues that occurred. Tutoring classes are usually best option. Students that can benefit from tutoring classes have started taking them so they are ready for April, when most will get the opportunity to take the failed exams again. We are confident that our students will be pass these exams.

Highlights of the quarter:

  • Our student Selma accepted her diploma at the Graduate Commencement ceremony in March. She was also selected as a recipient of not one, but two rewards. She received Dean’s Award for the student with the highest cumulative GPA and commendation for outstanding extracurricular activities.
  • Our student Adnan H., engineering student studying in Bihac, successfully defended his diploma paper at the end of February. He had a very challenging project that took months of research, building a prototype and then writing a paper to support his research. He received the highest grade possible for his project.
  • Bosana students are obligated to volunteer while they are receiving scholarships, to gain experience and also to give back to their community. Some students volunteer the required minimum while others go above and beyond. Our student Mirzet spent a lot of his time volunteering, and because of his dedication, he got an opportunity to visit Barcelona, Spain to attend a conference as a representative of the organization. He took these pictures to show how much support from Bosana means to him.

New Donor updates:

One of our loyal supporters from New York State, Vedrana K. once again organized and performed at a concert to raise money for Bosana Foundation. Donations that she collected during her concert and additional donations received through GoFund me campaign amounted to two thousand dollars. Vedrana wanted to direct these donations for Bosana’s Afterschool program in Zenica. Vedrana’s fundraiser secured enough funds to keep this program running for six months.

Selma and her many diplomas
Selma and her many diplomas
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BOSANA FOUNDATION

Scholarship and Personal Development Program

Quarterly Report

October - December 2016

Executive Summary:

For our students, the last quarter of the calendar year also represents the beginning of new academic year. During the months of October and November students started classes and their new school year; they met new professors and started with a new material for this year. U.S. Embassy project was completed in Mostar, Kladanj and Tuzla and our students are pleased with the outcome. Also newest Bosana mentor visited out students in Sarajevo.

Students and Program Update:

December means that the end of fall semester is coming to an end. Many students already had their first midterms and are well into the second part of the midterms. In January they will start with their final exams.  

Last quarter we had five Bosana graduates, this quarter we have two additional graduates. Our student Matea defended her diploma paper this quarter. We also have three students who are ready for final oral exams and now are just waiting to set the date.  

New Bosana students accepted into our program are adjusting well; they have been volunteering and trying to use everything Bosana has to offer. This year we have a lot of students working on their professional development; most of them are taking language classes hoping to be more competitive once they are ready for demanding job market.

Highlights of the quarter:

  • The Dean of Medicine at the University in Mostar as the best student of the year has selected our student from Mostar, Stipan for the second year in a row. Stipan had all straight A’s since he started his studies and we are all very proud of him.
  • Five of our students that graduated in the past quarter have started their graduate studies.
  • This November our new students Dzenana and Mediha represented Bosana Foundation at the Third International Sarajevo University Fair. Universities from all over the region send their representatives to such events where high school students have option to learn more about potential universities and about scholarships available to them.

US Embassy Project final stages:

Social Entrepreneurship among BiH youthis the first Bosana project that was done in collaboration with US Embassy in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The aim of this project was to provide professional trainings through workshops, lectures and hand-on experience on topic of youth activism and social entrepreneurship to at least 60 beneficiaries ages 18-25 across both entities in BIH to empower them to become change makers in their own local communities.

Workshops and lectures were completed in 2015, projects were also realized, websites created and individual groups completed their tasks. This year students went back to complete the final stages of their projects and evaluate the impact their project had.

In final phase of fundraiser for “Egipatsko selo” students in Mostar collected warm clothes, shoes, food, school supplies, toys and sanitary products. Additional money donated during this event was used to buy food supplies for this particular home for children, since that is the most important item on their list.

New Donor updates:

We are happy to announce that Bosana’s new mentor visited our students in Sarajevo during the month of October. Annel met with Bosana’s President and few students studying in Sarajevo. He was able to learn first hand what it means to be a Bosana student and he already started mentoring one of our students.

Bosana students at university fair
Bosana students at university fair
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Student gathering
Student gathering

BOSANA FOUNDATION

Scholarship and Personal Development Program

Quarterly Report

July-September 2016

 

Executive Summary:

This reporting period we are covering summer break for most of the Bosana students. Those that did not pass all of their exams had a pretty busy summer studying for October make up exams. During this slower than usual period, Bosana stuff however was kept busy. We accepted applications for new scholarship students and also were busy preparing for our student gathering we have each year to welcome new students in September.

Students and Program Update:

With the end of the summer, we are happy to officially report that 10 Bosana students have graduated this year. Some of them will seek employment while six students have decided that they will continue with their graduate studies that Bosana will also support financially.

We are also very excited to report that we have also accepted 11 new students for the upcoming 2016/17 school year as well as three students into our Professional Development program (they will not received financial support from Bosana but will have access to all other form of support).  

Highlights of the quarter:

  • One of our students from Gorazde helped organize this year’s student gathering. These student gatherings are always organized in different parts of BIH and our students take part in helping us organize it. This time, 28 students were able to attend our gathering, including 8 new students who were just accepted this September. It was a beautiful weekend spent in the vicinity of Ruda Glava, a location from which you can see most of Bosnians mountaintops.
  • Six of our graduate students will continue to obtain their Masters degrees. Bosana’s policy is that we continue to support them financially because in almost all of the cases, having a simple bachelors degree does not provide sufficient support for employment. This year, this is the largest number of graduate students that we have had and it has definitely put a large strain on our financials that we hope to overcome in the coming months.
  • Our student from Mostar studying Medicine was awarded second time in a row as our best student and received a monetary award of approximately $300 dollars. Stipan has straight As a medical student, particularly, it deserves all kinds of praises.
  • One of our students from Mostar was invited to be one of the main speakers at the Adriatic Youth Forum in Sarajevo. She was invited because two years ago she wrote a very impressive paper on the issue of youths’ lack of involvement and initiative in BIH and she was invited to speak on the issue.
  • Two of Bosana students were selected among 22 other students from BIH to receive a Eurorail pass to travel for 20 days across Europe. Bosana also helped them financially and they were able to visit 10 countries and 12 cities. An experience of a lifetime.
  • One of our students from Bihac who graduated this year from the University of Economics was selected among the lucky few for a paid internship at the local municipality. This is a significant achievement because her Masters degree requires of her to have a year of work experience in order to graduate college.

“Bosana students for Humanity” Project:

Bosana students continue to help their local communities every month. Every month they give portion of their scholarship and Bosana double matches the amount so they can help families in need. Each month students choose families in different cities.

In this quarter Bosana students decided to help one of our past graduate students who does not have any family or home to rebuild a house his family used to own.   Funds from months of June, July and August were all given to Edin to help him finance the rebuilding of his house so that soon he will have his own place to live. The house is very old and devastated; and Edin needs to rebuild most of the interior as well as the exterior. (plumbing, walls, fixtures etc.).

(picture of the house before and now).

For the month of September, our students decided to help two boys from two different families with school supplies in town of Bijeljina where one of our students lives. One boy lives with his father who is unemployed and only has occasional hourly jobs that are barely enough for food. Second boy lives with his mother, brother and sister and both were not able to buy school supplies.

Challenges:

This has been a very eventful quarter but we have no significant challenges to report.

House now remodeled
House now remodeled
house before remodelling
house before remodelling
Our student with one of they boys they helped
Our student with one of they boys they helped
Selma and Matea, students who travelled to Europe
Selma and Matea, students who travelled to Europe
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Organization Information

Bosana Foundation

Location: Los Angeles, CA - USA
Website:
Project Leader:
Senita Slipac
Los Angeles, California United States
$68,500 raised of $100,000 goal
 
578 donations
$31,500 to go
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