Change Tunisia and the World through music: the mission of Amal, a talented young Tunisian violoncellist

Amal Ben Saad is a 24 years old Tunisian musician that plays cello for the National Tunisian Symphony Orchestra. She has a passion for this instrument and for music that she has been carrying since her childhood.


Amal, when in high school, used to never be seen without the “big” cello on her shoulders. She has chosen music and music is her life.

In addition to pursuing her graduate degree in Maths, Amal is currently also a music teacher at AlKindey music school in Tunis. She believes in giving back to the community and she is committed to empowering other Tunisians through music. Amal is one of the founders of “Jil Ghodwa”, a Tunisian NGO aiming to empower young Tunisians and help them achieve their dreams. Through “Jil Ghodwa”, Amal and the other members believe that children and young people are the future change makers, the founders of a better Tunisia and that this change can come from music. Their mission is to boost children’ self-esteem and give them the confidence to take the lead, explore their potentials and let their creativity run free through music.


Through the “Music awakening program”, Amal and her friends being musicians themselves wanted to use their music and skills in order to express themselves and bring happiness to people. They share their ideas about how to perform and make music accessible to everyone, they travel to under-developed areas in Tunisia to bring music to people. Their goal is to help children get an easier and cheaper access to music.

The music awakening program contains a series of music workshops and small concerts as well as an ongoing project called “The National Forum of Child Music”. Amal and her friends welcome any initiative and good faith from anyone that wants to believes in what they believe and that is willing to help reinforce their mission and support Tunisia.


Amal says : “we are a team and we have a dream that is to bring music to every child in Tunisia…and we will make it happen”

“Jil Ghodwa” first song (translated in English from Arabic) is:

Our home is dear to us

We shall protect it from ennemies

Its love flows in our veins

Our home is the dearest

Our Tunisia is the most beautiful country

Link to the NGO Jil Ghodwa website

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Schlumberger Foundation Fellowship: Tunisian Women preparing for PhD or Post-Doc in physical sciences or engineering are eligible!


The Faculty for the Future Fellowships are used to
support women from developing and emerging economies in pursuing a PhD
or Post-Doc with the ultimate aim to return to their home country as a
professor or researcher.

The Foundation is searching for the following profiles:

-          Women, from developing and emerging economies;

-          Pursuing studies in physical sciences or engineering (with
a few awards in biological and health sciences as well);

-          Preparing for PhD or Post-Doctorate studies abroad (in a
developed country). Only students who have applied to, have been
admitted to, or are currently enrolled in a university abroad to
pursue a PhD or a Post-doctoral course can apply for a Faculty for the
Future grant;

-          Willing to contribute to the socio-economic development of
their home countries and regions by strengthening the faculties in
their home universities, pursuing relevant research, and/or using
their specific expertise to address policy issues.

Details about the program can be found at:


The new application process opens Sep 9th and closes Nov 15th, 2013;
renewals open Sep 8th  and close Nov 8th, 2013.

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Khalil Zayani: A young Tunisian painter who believes in a borderless world

Khalil Zayani is a young, ambitious Tunisian painter who, although based in Tunisia, believes in a borderless world for his peers. Khalil teaches young Tunisians through workshops how to better communicate through painting which he believes is a universal language. Being himself inspired by the Tunisian history and archeology, he specializes in mosaics and does apply his passion for it to the communication field.

Khalil also uses new technology in painting and art. He helps young Tunisians develop skills in using technology for artistic expression.

Khalil believes in a Tunisia even more and more open to the world….a cultural hub where people from all around the world meet to express themselves in a universal language: artistic expression!

Below is one of Khalil’s paintings: “L’ocean bleu” (Blue ocean).


Link to his personal website: here

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Nesserine: a young creative Tunisian woman inspiring all of us!

Nesserine is a Tunisian graduate student at Texas A&M. She studies architecture. Nesserine created a wall for her fellow university students to help them think about their life goal.


Nessrine expresses her motivation and source of inspiration saying:

“I did this project because I needed to find a purpose for life, these last months have been the hardest I’ve ever been through, seeing my mom die in front of me was a big test in my life. I had two choices: continue living or give up, I had to find strength somewhere and I am still looking for it. I created this wall as a personal project nothing to do with school or thesis or any degree related topic, it was something I needed to do to feel I can make a difference, even if it’s small.”

We would like to congratulate Nesserine on her initiative because we believe that she is a source of inspiration for all of young Tunisians and Americans. She showed outstanding strength and creativity.

Nesserine, thank you for this inspirational project!

The Tunisian Community Center invites all Tunisians and Americans to share with us their projects….there is no single small project, every contribution, when done with heart and commitment as what Nesserine did, is powerful enough to change our world.

Link to the article : here

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TCC: Educating Tunisians and the international community about Tunisia’s debt situation

ibn khaldun

The Ibn Khaldun Institute, as part of the Tunisian Community Center, is engaged toward educating the world about Tunisia’s debt situation in the aftermath of the Revolution.


Mondher Smida, the director of the Ibn Khaldun Institute and a proud member of the Tunisian Community Center, explains in an interview to the prestigious Arbitrage Magazine, the crucial issues about the debt situation of Tunisia. Here is an except:

“The country is in a bad shape,” says director Mondher Smida. “The political arena is not going to improve, the economic conditions are not going to improve because of the debt. The problem is, with that debt, we do not know which part of it is legitimate and which part of it is not legitimate.”

Ibn Khaldun has launched an online petition seeking to have the international community re-evaluate Tunisia’s debt based on the idea of ‘illegitimate debt,’ a term that implies lenders should have some responsibility when they give out loans that could be used for human rights abuses.

Full article: HERE

Please sign the petition to help Tunisian young people build a brighter future!

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Tunisian Dialect spoken in Texas: The “Tunisian Table” by Safouene Mili



Safouene Mili is a Fullbright Foreign language Teaching Assistant who came to the U.S. at The University of Texas at Austin to teach Arabic for one academic year. From his own initiative, he started the “Tunisian Table” which is a weekly one hour meeting during which arabic speaking American students gather and practice the Tunisian dialect.

Tunisian Arabic, like other Maghrebi dialects, has a vocabulary mostly Arabic, with significant Berber substrates, and many words and loanwords borrowed from Berber, French, Turkish, Italian and Spanish.”

Safouene represents the international spirit of our country and culture. He plays the role of a young ambassador of the Tunisian culture in the U.S. The Tunisian Community Center is proud of those Tunisians like Safouene who contribute to the shining of our country in North America.

Here is the testimonial of Safouene:

“ I am a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant. In Tunisia, I am a Teacher of English and I was selected to come to the U.S to teach my native language (Arabic) to Americans. UT (The University of Texas at Austin) has the best Arabic Language Program in all the Unites States so I consider myself lucky for having this great opportunity to work closely with great Professors and Teachers especially Dr. Kristen Brustad and Dr. Mahmoud Al-Batal. I also served as a Language Partner in the Arabic Flagship Program and I could create a “Tunisian Table”. In fact, I had some students who visited Tunisia and fell in love with its culture, customs and traditions. They became very interested in the Tunisian dialect and they wanted to learn more about it. The Tunisian table in a one hour informal weekly meeting during which we talk about general topics using only the Tunisian dialect. It was a great opportunity for all of us: For students as they were practicing their Tunisian and learning new vocabulary while chatting and for me as I was serving as a Cultural Ambassador of my country. The Tunisian Table is the first one ever at UT and I will be happy if Tunisian students and teachers in the U.S would do the same. Americans, and especially those who are learning Arabic, need to know more about our beautiful Tunisia so let’s give them the chance to learn about it and enjoy its amazing dialect! … “


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The 2013 Tunisian American Day at The University of Texas at Austin

poster TAD 2013


Reserve your seats!

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STeLA Forum 2013: future Tunisia leaders, don’t miss the opportunity to learn and grow…apply now!


Dear student,

Are you ambitious? Do you have the answers? Can you cooperate and lead? Are you part of the next generation of world leaders? Then join the STeLA international leadership forum!
What is STeLA?
Each year the Science and Technology Leadership Association organizes an international leadership forum for 50 of the world’s best students. This year’s forum will be held at the Delft University of Technology centred around the theme Managing 10 billion people: Overpopulation and Urbanization. The forum encompasses leadership theory from the Harvard Business School and the MIT Sloan School of Management together with motivating lectures and demanding workshops. You will be challenged, confronted and inspired. Are you ready?

Why should you apply?
The STeLA forum is an amazing opportunity to learn from the best. You will enhance your leadership skills together with other outstanding students from all over the world in an intensive and demanding program. Each day you focus on reaching your individual goals with ample feedback from personal coaches and your peers. This results in your admittance to the international network of future leaders and an experience that lasts a life time.

Apply online before the 30th of April!
The forum will take place this August 23-31 at the renowned Delft University of Technology. During nine days, 50 students from all over the world are brought together to learn about leadership and create a lasting network of like-minded ambitious people. Apply and learn more at

Questions? Contact us via or ask us anything at one of our information sessions:

  • TU Delft 4 & 5 April 12:30 – 13:30 at the University Library Hive room
  • VU 11 April 17.30 – 18.30 at BV-1H50 (BelleVUe building)
  • UvA 22 April 18:00 – 21:00 at OMHP A1.18C

Application link:

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This year, the Tunisian American Day is in Austin, Texas!!

The Tunisian American Day will take place at The University of Texas at Austin on June 1st. Hook ‘em Horns!

Founded in 1999, the Tunisian Community Center or TCC, is a US-based non-profit organization, dedicated toward community building and cultural outreach for Tunisian Americans. TCC organizes multiple programs and events throughout the nation.

In 2005, TCC established the Tunisian American Day tradition. It represents a recurring opportunity to celebrate its community and its heritage as well as the enduring Tunisian-American friendship.

 Organized in a different U.S. city every year, it is commemorated during a celebration. The event includes the Ibn Khaldun Award presentation ceremony as well as live Tunisian music entertainment and catered Tunisian dinner.

People attending are Tunisians, Tunisian Americans and Americans from around the United States. We usually have people invited including the Tunisian ambassador in the US, people from the United Nations, faculty, engineers, businesspeople and students. The event is yearly reported on the Tunisian National TV. 

 This year, our honoree is Dr Mahmoud Triki, who is the President and Founder of the South Mediterranean University and  Dean of the Mediterranean School of Business (MSB).

This event is great for anyone who wants to not only spend a sweet Tunisian evening but also expand his/her network and meet very experienced people.

The Tunisian-American Day celebration / The Ibn Khaldun Award ceremony

-Award Ceremony
……Honoree: Dr Mahmoud Triki (Scroll Down)
-Catered Tunisian Dinner
-Live Music Entertainment

Saturday June 1st, 2013
6:00 pm – 11:30 pm

University of Texas at Austin
AT&T Confrence CenterSalon C

Individual= $100.
Couple= $150
Student= $50


- You may, also, mail a Check/Money order payable to TCC:

Tunisian Community Center
Ibn Khaldun Award-2013
PO Box 837
Clifton Park, NY 12065-0801

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TECHGirls – Tunisian young girls, you can come to the U.S. and become Technology leaders in your schools!

Teenage secondary school students are invited to apply for participation in the 2013 TechGirls program. The program will bring teenage girls, ages 15-17, from select countries in the Middle East and North Africa to the United States in June-July 2013 for a month-long U.S.-based exchange program focused on promoting high-level study of technology.

Deadline: 26th of February! 

Students who may apply are those who:
1) are between the ages of 15 and 17 as of June 1, 2013 (born after June 1, 1996, and before June 1, 1998);
2) have demonstrated advanced skills and a serious interest in technology, engineering, and/or math in their academic studies;
3) intend to pursue higher education and careers in technology;
4) have strong English language skills;
5) are excited about learning;
6) exhibit maturity, flexibility, and open-mindedness; and
7) will attend at least one more semester of secondary school upon their return to their home country.
8) are willing to complete a follow-on project upon their return home

Please find more information using this link.

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