Posted by Arab American Institute on May 03, 2018 in Blog

The Arab American Institute Foundation (AAIF) is happy to announce the 2018 Helen Abbott Community Service Awards have been awarded to three phenomenal Arab American students: Christina Mitry, Jana Taoube, and Tahani Almujahid.

For the past 19 years, AAIF has been awarding exceptional Arab American students for their leadership and dedication to community service. Helen Abbott is remembered for her lifelong commitment to improving the lives of those around her, including building 22 homes for disadvantaged families in her Fort Pierce, Florida area. She was an unwavering supporter of the Arab American Institute Foundation, and made a donation that was later converted into a youth scholarship in her name.

Christina_Mitry_Photo.jpgChristina Mitry is a senior at Louis E. Deiruff High School in Allentown, PA, where she is President of the Class of 2018, as well as Student Council Secretary and Captain of her school’s debate team. A team player and lover of sports, she is member of her school’s track and field, basketball, and cross country teams, as well as captain of the tennis team. Having left Syria, a place she holds close to her heart, 2010, Christina has dedicated herself to taking on a rigorous academic course load, including 12 Advanced Placement courses, and volunteering hundreds of hours through church youth groups, the National Honor Society, and Key Club. As Vice President of the Key Club, Christina helped raise over 21,980 pounds of food for homeless individuals in Pennsylvania. All of these experiences have helped her realize that her passion and purpose in life is helping others, which is why she plans to pursue a career as a pediatrician.



Jana_Photo.pngJana Taoube is currently a high school senior in Fort Hamilton High School in Brooklyn, New York. She is the eldest sister of four siblings who motivate her to do better every day. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Symphonic Band, Marching Band, Orchestra, Leadership Program and Student Body President. Being the Student Organization President has allowed her to connect her school to outside charities, including the NYC Food Bank, Hurricane Relief, and the Thirst Project. Through these groups she has not only performed for the NFL Gala, but she has also accumulated more than 500 hours of community service. In addition to tutoring her peers at school, Jana has helped students at numerous other learning centers, such as A+ Academy and the Resource Room. In addition to this, she has volunteered in Lutheran Medical Center, Maimonides Medical Center, and Bravo Ambulance Service where she has gotten a taste of the career in medicine that she hopes to pursue. She is a strong advocate in her community as she is the student member in the District 20 High School Council and the New Visions student group located in Manhattan, where she works together with those around her to accomplish goals greater than any one of them.

Tahani_Photo.pngTahani Almujahid is currently a senior at Edsel Ford High School in Dearborn, MI, where she is in the top 1% of her class. She has worked endlessly to provide students at Edsel Ford more opportunities for volunteering and showcasing her love for community service. She is founder and President of her school’s Key Club, where spends a lot of her time volunteering with her peers at local organizations and taking part in service projects throughout the year. As student council president and a French officer for French Honor Society/French club, she utilizes her skills to create fun and enriching learning opportunities. Tahani channels her passion for social justice into her everyday life, and recently had the privilege of participating in the “Summer Youth Dialogues.” A program affiliated with the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, she learned more about social justice through dialogues with students from other schools all throughout Metro-Detroit. She currently serves as a Youth Social Justice Fellow with U of M Ann Arbor, where she focuses on issues statewide and provides youth with workshops that encourage discussion and awareness around important topics. Tahani has also served as a panelist on one of the youth panels at the Women’s March in Detroit. Currently, she plans to attend the University of Michigan- Ann Arbor in the fall, and is considering a career in law. In her future endeavors, she hopes to bring about change.