Graduates look back on their time at King’s
FAHER ELFAYEZ ’12 reflects on the lasting benefits of SEP
The Summer Enrichment Program (SEP) at King’s Academy was one of the highlights and turning points in my life. SEP taught me lessons that I will always have and always remember, such as how to be responsible, caring and giving. Counselors gave us so much. They showed us that it does not matter where you stand right now in terms of knowledge and experience; what really matters is where you go next and what you do to improve. A simple example is learning English. It did not matter to the counselors how well you spoke it; what really mattered was what you did with it – whether you kept it the same or worked on it and took it to the next stage. With all of that, I knew the counselors were there to provide help and support. Four years after my first SEP experience, I applied to be a SEP counselor myself and was chosen. It was truly one of my best experiences because it was time to give back what I had once been given.
The summer before going off to college at Georgetown University, I posted as my Facebook status the dorm that I was going to be living in as a freshman. One of the former counselors – Huoi, whom I met during my first year of SEP – commented on that status saying she had lived in the same dorm as a freshman at Georgetown. The last time I had seen Huoi was six years earlier at SEP. She messaged offering to help me move in and, since I was flying in two days early, she offered to let me stay with her, take me shopping and help me move in. Now that I look back at the beginning of my freshman year, I know that, if it were not for her tremendous help, my year would not have been the same. Even with her very busy schedule, she still calls and texts me all the time. So even after six years, I’m still experiencing the benefits of SEP, and I will always be truly grateful.
RASHED AL QUDAH ’11 reminisces about football
I was a freshman. It was the first Parents Weekend in the history of King’s Academy. During that weekend, there were a lot of sporting events going on so that parents could watch their kids play. My sport was football, and we had a game against the Modern American School. I hadn’t made a good enough impression at the beginning of the term to be a starter, so I sat on the bench throughout the first half. We were losing 2-1, and I figured I wouldn’t get to play, so I asked my parents to go home since there seemed to be no point to their staying. To my surprise, the coach put me in. I know he sent me in just to give everyone playing time. But that game changed how everyone looked at me as a football player.
Soon after taking the field, I scored my first goal. I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw the ball move the net! Five minutes after that, I scored again. I remember that, as I was celebrating, my teammate Suhayb Al-Jawhari ’11 ran to me with the biggest smile on his face because he knew me the best out of all my teammates and he knew what I had gone through to prove myself. Even though we ended up losing the game, I came away from the field with a personal victory. My only regret is that my parents didn’t get to see me score!