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AAEF Donates to Scholarship Fund

Arab-American Educational Foundation and HCC Foundation Opening Doors for Houston-area High School Students

The Arab American Educational Foundation presented a gift of $10,000 to the Houston Community College Foundation in May 2012, establishing the ARAB-AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL FOUNDATION, INC. OPPORTUNITY 14 SCHOLARSHIP ENDOWMENT. The HCC Foundation Board of Directors approved a matching gift, bringing the total scholarship amount to $20,000.

“We are deeply appreciative of the Arab-American Educational Foundation’s generosity in support of the Opportunity 14 scholarship. Their gift will provide access to higher education for many of our students who might not otherwise have the opportunity to attend college,” said Dr. Kelly J. Zúñiga, Executive Director, HCC Foundation.

The HCC Foundation is engaged in a $30 million endowment campaign to fund the Opportunity 14 scholarship in perpetuity for future generations of Houstonians. Opportunity 14 is helping young people achieve their college ambitions at HCC by providing financial assistance for tuition, fees and books for every student who qualifies.

The Opportunity 14 Scholarship is available to qualified students who live in the HCC service area and who enroll in 9.0 hours or more at HCC within one year of either graduating high school or earning a GED prior to their 20th birthday. Opportunity 14 is a need-based scholarship for entering HCC first-year students who qualify for some federal or state financial aid, but not enough to cover the costs of their tuition, fees, and textbooks. To be considered for a scholarship, the student simply has to complete two tasks: apply for financial aid and sign up for a minimum of nine semester credit hours at HCC.

If a student meets Opportunity 14’s eligibility requirements, the scholarship funds will automatically be transferred to his or her student account. The scholarship will provide up to $6,000 over a period of 3 years, with a maximum of $1,500 per fall and spring semester and $1,000 per summer semester. In most cases, the combination of financial aid and Opportunity 14 scholarship funds will cover all costs of tuition, fees, and textbooks. To learn more, visit or call the HCC Foundation office at 713.718.8595.

Marcel Khalife Speaks at Rothko Chapel - Video


Rothko 4-17-12 Intro from AAEF on Vimeo.


Rothko 4-17-12 Marcel Speech from AAEF on Vimeo.

Q & A Session

Rothko 4-17-12 Marcel-Q&A from AAEF on Vimeo.

Marcel Khalife, Award-Winning Musician at Jones Hall, April 20, 2012

Marcel Khalife and Al Mayadine Ensemble

In the Presence of Absence: An Homage to the Poet Mahmoud Darwish in Tribute to the Arab Spring

8 pm, April 20, 2012
Jones Hall

Presented and sponsored by
The Arab-American Educational Foundation in association with Society for the Performing Arts

Lebanese Master Marcel Khalifé performed the prophetic poems of the Arab World’s most renowned and beloved poet, Mahmoud Darwish, in tribute to the Arab Spring.

The poetry of Mahmoud Darwish (, the melodies of Marcel Khalife (, resonate across the Arab world from the Middle East to North Africa, resounding above the din of conflict and poverty, singing instead of the shade of grapevines, the bright eyes of loved ones, the heartache of divisions and decline that could be healed, love that could be returned.

Marcel Khalifé (click here for his bio), Lebanese master of the oud (Arabic lute), evoked this world, honoring the spirit of his late friend and associate Mahmoud Darwish a strikingly original Palestinian poet born in Palestine whose poetry has been translated to more than 25 languages worldwide and extensively published in the US. Khalifé’s new concert program, In the Presence of Absence: An Homage to Mahmoud Darwish, revisited and re-imagined the ties that bound these two powerful advocates of Arab culture, one that weaves the rich complexities of its great history, the diversity of its cultures with the humanity and longing of today and deeply expressed by the dawn of the current monumental Arab spring sweeping the Arab world.

Marcel Khalife is the recipient of many awards, including the UNESCO AArtist for Peace Award. His official Facebook page is!/pages/Marcel-Khalife/6930873077.

Event in Honor of Anthony Shadid

Listening to Whispers:
The Legacy of Anthony Shadid and his Reporting on the Arab World

New York Times reporter Anthony Shadid died in February while on assignment in Syria. The two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, who was widely regarded as the best U.S. reporter working in the Middle East, had been scheduled to give a talk at the University of Texas on April 9. This program went forward to honor his work.

The event began with a screening of a portion of Shadid's 2005 lecture to a UT conference on "Journalism and the Arab World," introduced by Robert Jensen (School of Journalism).

David Hoffman, who was Shadid's editor when he worked at the Washington Post and knew him well, offered reflections and insights into Shadid's career. Hoffman covered foreign affairs, national politics, economics, and served as an editor at the Post for 27 years. His book The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and its Dangerous Legacy won the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for general non-fiction. Hoffman is currently a contributing editor at the Washington Post and Foreign Policy.
Hoffman's presentation will be followed by a panel featuring UT faculty members Glenn Frankel (School of Journalism), Karin Wilkins (Media Studies and Center for Middle Eastern Studies) and Tarek El-Ariss (Arabic Studies).

There was a reception after the program, which was sponsored by the Institute for Communication on Media and the Middle East, School of Journalism, Center for Middle Eastern Studies, College of Communication, and Department of Radio-Television Film at the University of Texas.

Location: CMA 5.160 (LBJ Room), Guadalupe and Dean Keeton, University of Texas at Austin