MEPI-TLG scholar Mohamad Al Rifai, of the first cohort of Policymaking, Gender Studies, and Resource Management (PGRM) at AUB, has won a seat in the students’ elections held at AUB on November 13th, 2020. Mohamad joined AUB’ Secular Club last summer and ran with them for the student elections as they shared similar views and goals.
The Campus Choice list, announced by the AUB Secular Club that included Mohamad, had a turnout of 33 out of 94 SRC seats, and won 9/12 of USFC seats and all cabinet members. Mohamad received 89% of the votes for the seat he was running for compared to his competition for the same seat.
As an OSB graduate SRC, Mohamad believes in his responsibility to represent graduate business students' and carry their concerns and requests to the administration. Mohamad’s representation is essential at these times at AUB, when Lebanon is going through a social and economic crisis.
Following the elections, Mohamad and the Secular Club are working on establishing different committees that tackle various students’ affairs and issues, including financial stability and tuition, research opportunities, and mentorship programs, among others.
Mohamad’s recent achievement is not a first, but a result of his hard work and commitment to be a change-maker in Lebanon for the past two years. In May 2018, Mohamad and four of his colleagues launched “Corruption Fighters”, a non-governmental organization aiming to fight for social justice, women’s rights, and against corruption. Corruption Fighters is establishing a social media presence and is currently working on finalizing the legal paperwork needed to be officially and legally registered in Lebanon.
The NGO was able to crowdfund some resources for donation following the blast on August 4 that hit Beirut’s port. Corruption Fighters held several events of food and cloth distribution in Beirut, Tripoli, and Bekaa, and distributed more than one hundred food portions to families.
Despite the many challenges facing them, the devastating port blast, and the political and social struggles Lebanon is facing, Corruption Fighters believe that they can still make a positive impact and be part of the movement to make a change and shape a better future.
In December 2020, Mohamad’s startup Lebanese Estate Mutual Fund (LEMF), a financial institution startup in Lebanon, was qualified and chosen to continue in the MSFEA pre-accelerator program at AUB, which will include sessions in the winter semester and through the spring and help him raise seed-funding.
AUB and MEPI are extremely proud of scholar Mohamad Al Rifai and his achievements and look forward to his upcoming successes with Corruption Fighters, LEMF, and as a member of the student committee.