Dr. Zafer Lababidi and Dr. Wasan Tawfeeq posing with students during the Arabic Program Awards Night. Outstanding students across all language levels were given certificates and gifts for excelling in their Arabic coursework. Students put exceptional effort while studying the language and exceeded the language proficiency goals set for them at the beginning of the academic year.

Macie Lavender

Macie Lavender studied abroad in Amman, Jordan from May-July 2021





Madelyn Johnson

Madelyn Johnson is a double major in Middle Eastern Studies and International Affairs with a minor in History. As a sophomore, Maddy received the Boren Scholarship to travel to Jordan and study Arabic at the University of Jordan. While in Jordan, she was also able to intern at Al Hadaf, a locally-run NGO assisting Iraqi refugees. Madelyn's Boren experience strengthened her love for the language and the region and opened so many doors to future internships and study abroad opportunities.

Payton Parkin

Payton Parkin is a senior studying Middle Eastern Studies and Public Administration through Florida State's Emergency Management and Homeland Security (EMHS) program. Being connected with her peers, professors, and academics within the Middle Eastern Studies Program has been an instrumental factor in Payton's success at Florida State University. In Fall 2020, Payton became the Founder of Florida State's Arabic Honor Society (AHS), the first collegiate Arabic honor society in the United States. With this organization, Payton aims to promote excellent scholarship by providing an atmosphere for academic and professional mobility. She hopes AHS will leave a lasting legacy at FSU and expand to other universities nationwide.

Ariana Richter

Ariana Richter is a double major in International Affairs and Middle Eastern Studies. She is currently working on a thesis paper that discusses regional conflicts and their effects on humanitarian crises, specifically focusing on the Civil War in Yemen and rising rates of child marriage. She hopes to one day become a refugee lawyer and assist individuals who are fleeing persecution in their home country. Using her Arabic skills, she is interested in assisting women and children located in the Middle Eastern successfully seek asylum in the United States.


Eliane Aoun

Eliane Aoun wore the traditional Lebanese outfit " 'abeye " at the Fulbright FLTA conference in Washington, DC. She is shown in the picture with a Tunisian Fulbright fellow. As a cultural ambassador, she shared her culture and traditions with Fulbrighters from over 50 countries around the world.

Eliane Aoun did a presentation about her first semester experience in the US. She talked about Florida State University, the Arabic program, and the cultural and extracurricular activities that she participated in and helped organizing at FSU.


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