READING, Pa. — Imane Guisse, a junior at Penn State Berks, was one of 25 students nationwide to receive a scholarship from the World Affairs Council of America (WACA) to attend the Future of American Leadership Conference, set for Nov. 15-17 in Washington, D.C.
Guisse is majoring in global studies with the contemporary history and politics option. Guisse, whose parents are from Algeria, a state in North Africa on the Mediterranean coast, and Mali, located in West Africa, said that her multicultural heritage and frequent travel to Africa and Europe helped to ignite her passion for the major.
“I am the first in my family to be born in the United States,” Guisse said. “Traveling to visit my extended family during the summer has helped to shape my world view and acknowledge real-world issues.”
Guisse acts as the student liaison to the WACA of Greater Reading. At Penn State Berks, she serves as the World Affairs Club’s student government representative.
Guisse said that she heard about the conference through the WACA of Greater Reading and it sparked her interest. She was nominated by council president David Carroll and was very excited to be selected. She is the first to receive a scholarship from the Greater Reading chapter. The scholarship includes registration and a stipend to cover travel expenses. The conference will focus on leadership, and speakers will include senators, ambassadors and other leaders.
When asked about her future plans, Guisse said that she is creating the first Penn State Berks think tank to not just discuss issues but to find solutions. After graduation, she plans to pursue graduate studies and eventually hopes to work as a diplomat.
“I’m very invested in world issues,” said Guisse. “I would like to become a diplomat because there is a need for enhanced international communication, and diplomats help to facilitate that communication.”
Guisse said she is grateful for the support of the WACA of Greater Reading, her professors, and her family, as well as the networking support that Penn State Berks offers.
“Simply getting involved on campus is a big step in creating yourself,” she said.