I signed up for the English courses initially on the LASER project, and it was during these courses that the teacher informed us about the online higher education part of the project.  I have been looking for a long time for a scholarship programme which would allow me to peruse my higher education, but I hadn't been successful, despite applying for many scholarships. 

I faced many challenges while trying to continue my education here in Jordan, especially that the cost of higher education here is high, and I need to work eight hours every day to support my family.  A key goal for me was to develop my skills in English as I know it is an international language and we need it for everything.  I was also equally keen to finish my education in order to fulfil my goals in life. 

What I enjoyed most about the programme was the flexibility that online learning gave me and having many different time slots for the exams.  Although I didn't like the fact that we couldn't interact with the professors, but the overall experience was good for me. 

One of the great opportunities the project gave me, was to join the LASER team and become a co-facilitator to support other students with their studies.  This allowed me to get to know a lot of the students and to make friends. 

The project helped me achieve my life goals in getting a certificate and improving my English language skills.  My advice to others, ‘no matter how many difficulties you have, never give up and you will be very proud of your achievements’. 

Mohammad Alaa Otabachi is Syrian and holds a BSc in Computer Applications

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