Meet Amal–an esteemed Principal and highly regarded member of her community.
Amal is also a Palestine refugee currently living in the West Bank.
Always at the top of her class from a young age, Amal graduated from at An-Najah National University with honors. Now, she is the first female principal of a boys’ school in the West Bank.
After a brief time overseas, Amal returned to the West Bank and found a job teaching math at the UNRWA school in Qalqiliya; the very school that she had attended. As she worked alongside her own former teachers, her drive and initiative were quickly noticed. In 2000, she became principal of a girls’ school in Fara’a. When she learned that the Qalqiliya Basic Boys’ School needed a principal, she offered herself for the opportunity.
Her appointment was unprecedented. “I didn’t sleep one single minute the night before I started,” Amal said. “I was terrified to step inside an all-boys school full of male teachers.” Their first meeting quickly restored her confidence. “They were all very respectful and immediately expressed their support,” she said.
Despite growing up in difficult conditions as a refugee, Amal’s selflessness shows through her work. “I have been truly lucky. I was always surrounded by people who believed in me, so I have tried to do the same for others.”
Originally published in October 2013.