Student Success Stories - Meet Ayoub

Ayoub’s entire life can be summarized in three words: boldness, perseverance, and determination. Our proud alumnus followed an unusual pathway to success and is now receiving recognition for his hard work. He moved to the United States in 2017, from Morocco where he studied and earned degrees in Finance and Computer Science. Ayoub’s journey would not be linear, but oh-so inspiring and enriching.

Ayoub came to the U.S. only to work, but he soon realized he needed to go back to school for better job opportunities. Despite some doubts, he knew that he needed to continue his education to be able to work and succeed in the US. Ayoub’s first step to fulfilling his dream was to confront the language barrier.

A few months after arriving, Ayoub enrolled in the ESL Level 8 class at the Carlos Rosario School to improve his English Skills. He knew returning to school would be the best way to get ahead. “The idea of going back to school was very stressful because English is not my native language,” Ayoub recalled.

He had little knowledge of the American system and found most academic pathways took too long. “I thought long and hard about what I wanted to do and if I wanted to start a new career or continue focusing on finance and computer science,” he said. Ayoub remembered thinking about what he wanted to be when he was growing up. At 27 years old, he was asking himself this question again and the prospect of starting a new career at this point in his life felt strange.

After completing ESL Level 8, Ayoub enrolled in the Bilingual Teaching Assistant (BTA) Program. For the first time since moving to the United States, he felt confident and ready to contribute to the community. Ayoub is very grateful to the school. “Thanks to Carlos Rosario School, I now feel more comfortable to speak in English. It even made me forget some French words,” he said. Last year, Ayoub graduated from the Carlos Rosario School and enrolled at the University of the District of Columbia (UDC) to study Mathematics.

Throughout his education, Ayoub has been passionate about Math, Biology, Chemistry and Physics. He is really committed to a future career in medicine.

Ayoub’s multidisciplinary background recently earned him a place in the National Science Foundation (NSF) HBCU-UP Broadening Participation Research project: “Examining the Efficacy of a Virtual STEM Peer Mentorship Program.”

The aim of the project is to implement and evaluate a blended (i.e., face-to-face and virtual) STEM peer mentorship program in order to assist women and racial and ethnic minority students in developing their career self-efficacy in STEM. ‘’I have always been passionate about science and I have always been interested in understanding how the world works and in solving problems,’’ Ayoub said.

Ayoub sees his new life in America as a great opportunity where he could choose to help other people who are struggling. He thought about his life back home and remembered that he has always wanted to help people.

Like so many others, Ayoub’s part-time job disappeared due to Covid-19 but with perseverance he knows that big things await him. Whether in mathematics, education, IT or even a future in medicine, one thing is for sure – Ayoub is moving towards a brighter future!