The Palestinian Territories
- Program Year
- Country of Current Residence
- City/Town of Current Residence
Educator, Community activist
- Arabic, English
- Interest(s) / Expertise
- activism, democracy, education, human rights
A teacher and a community activist, Mohammed Shaban believes in the power of education to foster a culture of peace and non-violence in his home region, the Palestinian Territories. Given that approximately 75% of Gaza’s citizens are under the age of 25, he is acutely aware of both the potential for – and the pressing need for – educational reform in support of peace and development.
Mohammed was born in Khan Younis, Southern Palestine. After graduating with a BA in English from Al-Azhar University, he worked as a news announcer at a national youth-oriented radio program and served as a translator in a government ministerial office. While a student, he also began working as a Field Assistant at the District Liaison Office to facilitate the daily life of Palestinian Refugees.
Upon completion of a Graduate Diploma in Education from Al-Quds Open University, he spent several years building a teaching practice in state schools and universities, most recently as a lecturer on English Literature at a college, and serving as part-owner of a private secondary school.
Throughout his professional and personal life, he has consistently focused on public service and civic engagement in an effort to address the difficult conditions, including marginalization and rampant poverty, facing the people of Gaza. To this end, he served as a supervisor at the Palestinian Central Elections Commission, a community liaison officer at the Mines Advisory Group, a volunteer social worker for the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, a field coordinator at El-Wedad Society for Community Development, a story writer at the Culture and Free Thought Association, and a researcher at the Palestinian Center for Democracy and Conflict Resolution.
As an educator, Mohammed frequently convened public seminars, workshops and debates to raise community awareness about issues regarding democracy, peace-building, global values, universal education, gender equality, and conflict resolution. This work deepened his commitment to working at the community level to promote long-term human development throughout his home region. After serving on the Ministry of Education’s National Curriculum Reform and Development Committee, he was nominated to the Education Management Unit of the Palestinian Reform and Development Plan (2010-2020). In this capacity, he advised the state on how to integrate global values of peace and cross-culturalism throughout Palestine’s education systems- the findings of his Sauvé year.
Beyond being an avid reader of literature and international publications, Mohammed’s broad interests range from geography and demographics to foreign policy and international relations.
Mohamed studied systems of education in Québec and Canada, with a specific focus on the role of education in bridging cultural gaps and in contributing to a peaceful, multicultural social fabric. More broadly, he explored the links between education and civil society, nonviolence, multiculturalism and globalism. His long-term vision is to apply his findings to continue to advance an educational shift in his home.
As a lover and observer of people and places, he enjoyed cultural and linguistic exchange with his fellow Scholars and sought to foster in them a deeper understanding of Palestinian culture.