Alumni Success

Linna Yanqing LinLinna Yanqing Lin
Flushing International High School
Class of 2009

Linna Yanqing Lin moved to New York City from China in 2004 when she was 14 years old and enrolled at Junior High School 189. She struggled with learning the language and adapting to cultural differences at first. The focus of Flushing International High School (FIHS) on student collaboration and project-based learning helped her speak up, participate in class, and work as part of a group with other students. She appreciates how FIHS emphasized the process of learning, rather than just focusing on test results. Linna graduated from FIHS in 2009, graduated from City College of New York (CCNY) with a B.S. in Biochemistry, and will be attending Long Island University’s pharmacy program this upcoming fall.

faawaz-saeedFawwaz Saeed
The International High School at Prospect Heights
Class of 2008

Fawwaz Saeed arrived at International High School at Prospect Heights with a lot of heavy baggage, almost too much for a teenager in a foreign country. In addition to the recent loss of his father, he was also a school dropout and behind in math and science. From the start, the assistant principal and school social worker helped Fawwaz to think positively about his life and his future while grieving for his father. Although his home life was disrupted by changes in living situations and the trauma of an eviction, International High School at Prospect Heights became his home and his family.more...

In addition to his academic work, Fawwaz participated in several extracurricular activities including the debate team, student government, and the drama club, where he wrote and directed his own play. As an intern at the Office of Instructional Technology, he managed programs and helped to train teachers. The College Now Partnership with Brooklyn College (BC) provided Fawwaz with information about the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). Fawwaz enrolled in a business class at BC to help him strengthen his college applications, and with the help of some powerful recommendations from the IHS staff, Fawwaz was accepted at RIT. As a participant in the HEOP program, he received considerable financial aid, advice, tutoring, and the benefit of a supportive community while he concentrated on his studies in computer systems management.

eric-xianruiEric Xianrui
The International High School at LaGuardia Community College
Class of 2004

Eric Xianrui arrived in the United States from Fo-Shan City, Kwangung, located in the southern most province of China. After less than a year in the country and speaking very little English, he enrolled at The International High School at LaGuardia Community College. As a newly arrived immigrant, Eric described himself as “timid and nervous because I could only speak very simple English and I was afraid of speaking it in front of anybody.” At LaGuardia, Eric completed the requirements for his high school diploma while acquiring credits for several college courses, including advanced math. A member of the student government and community volunteer, Eric interned with a human rights activist project, assisting undocumented youth in gaining access to higher education. Eric attended Columbia University and majored in Mechanical Engineering. Eric believes that his internship is what “helped me believe that I can actually be part of the mechanism that will make a change in society.”

luincys-fernandezLuincys Fernandez
The Manhattan International High School
Class of 1999

When Luincys Fernandez arrived at The Manhattan International High School, she spoke very little English. An immigrant from the Dominican Republic, she had attended a bilingual junior high school in New York City. After being accepted at Manhattan International, Luincys became active in student government and trained as a peer mediator. Her high school internship at Bellevue Hospital inspired her to pursue a career in mental health. After graduating from MIHS, Luincys attended Hunter College and completed her prerequisites for medical school. At the college, she served as a member of the Minority Biomedical Research program and made the Dean’s List.Luincys completed her Master’s degree in Chemistry Secondary Education in the Fall 2008 and is a teacher at Bronx International High School. more...

“Being able to attend Bellevue Hospital for my first internship provided me with the opportunity to become a Spanish/English speaking interpreter. I was able to improve not only English skills, but also my Spanish skills. By working as an interpreter in the Hospital, I became interested in psychopathology. I was able to participate in individual, family, and group sessions with patients with different kinds of mental health disease. From this, I knew that I wanted to pursue a career in mental health.”

ibrahim-dialloIbrahim Diallo
The Brooklyn International High School
Class of 2007

In 2002, Ibrahim emigrated from Guinea, West Africa, to New York City, where he attended Brooklyn International High School. Ibrahim said, “While attending Brooklyn International, I had the opportunity to get to speak English without a fear of being made fun of. I got a chance to learn not only from my teachers, but also my peers from all over the world. I was challenged on the daily basis and encouraged to work with others. Brooklyn International was like a family to me.” As a student, Ibrahim was given the opportunity to step into the shoes of UN Ambassadors and solve the world’s problems – problems such as crime prevention and criminal justice, eradication of poverty, more...

.and global health. As a senior in high school, Ibrahim mentored up-and-coming Global Classrooms students by helping them with the art of debate and resolution writing. In May of 2008, he served as the Director of the UN Development Programme committee at the UNA-USA Model UN Conference. Upon graduating from high school, the Posse Foundation awarded Ibrahim with a full “Leadership Scholarship” to Trinity College. At school, he established the African Development Coalition, dedicated to developing and implementing human rights based programs in African countries and  raising funds to help restore inadequate schoolhouses in Western Africa.

Ibrahim also served as a producer on “The Documentary Project for Refugee Youth.” The venture is part of Global Action Project, a group that encourages social justice through youth and media. This collaborative media program is uniquely designed for youth who are resettling in New York from war-torn countries such as Sierra Leone,Burundi, and Albania.

Sara SaidSara Said
Brooklyn International High School
Class of 2004

Sara Said arrived in New York from Yemen in 1998 and enrolled at Brooklyn International High School (BKIHS) in 2000. She remembers how important BKIHS’s portfolio project were in preparing her for college-level work and developing her research and presentation skills. She even used some of her high school research papers in her college courses! As a student, she was President of Honor Society, Vice President of Student Government, and a leader in the student-led Arab Cultural Club. She attended Brooklyn College where she pursued a Bachelors degree in History and Secondary Education and a Masters in History.more...

. In 2012, she joined Brooklyn International as a permanent substitute teacher – the same high school she graduated from! Today, she’s a Social Studies teacher at Claremont International High School and supports leadership and afterschool programs.

alex-rodriguesAlex Rodrigues
The International High School at LaGuardia Community College
Class of 1993

Alex Rodrigues arrived in the United States from Bangladesh when he was twelve years old. As a junior high school student, he felt alienated from his peers and experienced a sense of differential treatment. Once at LaGuardia, Alex found his comfort zone and blossomed socially as well as academically. Eager to immerse himself in all the school had to offer; Alex became a member of the student government and a variety of clubs. He also worked as an intern at the LaGuardia Media Center, a technical training center in Manhattan, and as an engineer’s assistant at the School Construction Authority. As a result of his internships, Alex discovered his love of technology and engineering, and decided to pursue a career as a networking engineer.more...

An active Internationals’ alumnus, Alex has given back to his school community in so many ways. As the Network Administrator at Brooklyn International High School, he oversees the school’s computer system and labs, troubleshooting and solving technological problems. Committed to helping students identify and develop their individual interests and to pursue them in a real world context, Alex mentors a “Tech Squad” of ten students. Under his guidance, members of the squad have become certified computer technicians, and many hold paid after school and summer positions repairing computers and managing networks.