A Young Woman’s Mission to Integrate Creativity into Schools

By Zoe Buchli

Marya Joudani, 24, is enthusiastic about integrating art into education This stems mainly from her time at Connect Institute, where she was a student for two years and currently works as a coordinator.

“It’s only when I joined Connect Institute that I started to notice the differences between the way school is today and the way it should be,” she said.  

Nestled in a growing housing development in Agadir, a beach town in southern Morocco, Connect is housed in a large, modern building. The school provides “alternative higher education” and admits students based on their abilities, not their degrees or grades so far.

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Covering social protests, a new red line for journalism

By Sam Metivier

CASABLANCA — In July 2017, Omar Radi traveled to al-Hoceima to film a documentary on al-Hirak al-Shaabi (The Popular Movement), but he never got that chance. Like dozens of journalists, the 32-year-old freelancer was arrested for attempting to cover the story that had captured the attention of all Morocco.

Radi was arrested for ‘public intoxication’ after drinking a beer at a restaurant after his eight-hour drive from Casablanca. Radi says he wasn’t drunk but that the police had monitored him waiting for him to do anything vaguely illegal, per their orders from state authorities.

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Footloose but not fancy free: Dancing in Morocco

By Alexis Miller. Photos by Alexandria Saurman

Rabat — “I don’t get paid for this and I don’t think I would want to be…,” Hajar Regragui says while unlocking the door to the dance studio at International University of Rabat (UIR). She’s about to teach 60 college students choreographed dance routines in various styles: Hip-hop, African inspired dance, and Salsa. The course lasts three hours and is completely a labor of love. She seems to look happiest when drenched in sweat.

Hajar Regragui is a 21-year-old political science and international relations student at UIR, but she introduced herself to me first and foremost as a dancer and told me about her favorite spots in Casablanca for dancing.

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Being a (Secret) Atheist in a Country Full of Faith

RABAT–A café on the hem of Rabat’s medina basks in its atmosphere of quiet anonymity. This suits Mohamed Abdallah, a 27-year-old translator born and raised a few short alley twists away. He shifts a bit uneasily in his sun-drenched seat by the window, his sharp brown eyes scanning the space for possible eavesdroppers.

“I hope no one here speaks English,” Abdallah  says apprehensively. Though the small cafe is sparsely populated, its patrons preoccupied and noises soft, the conversation that is about to ensue makes him uneasy. Abdallah is an atheist, a belief that carries heavy implications in a country built on Islam.

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SIT Alumna Writes About the Homestay Experience

Alumna Anna Bongardino (Spring 2018) published this essay on the homestay experience in the PittNews. She is featured above with her homestay brother and sister.

I could hear the rhythmic chant of the afternoon adhan — the Islamic call to worship — ring out from the tinny rooftop speakers of nearby mosques from my second story bedroom in the city center of Rabat, Morocco. After the call to prayer subsided, a Moroccan woman who looked to be a few years younger than my mother walked through the door of my new bedroom and wrapped me in an affectionate embrace.

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