Samah has extensive expertise in cross-culturalism and feels privileged to have been part of various multi-cultural contexts. She lived and worked in global environments, and her international work experience includes project management, media analysis, translation, and mentoring refugees. She relates closely to the role of expats, in countries where she lived, such as the US, Italy, Luxembourg, the UAE and India.
Her passion for diversity and multi-culturalism has greatly developed her language skills. She is conversant in more than one language, including English, French, German, and Hindi, in addition to her mother tongue, Arabic. She has always felt a great deal of fulfillment and accomplishment juggling between cultures and languages.
She holds her Master’s degree in Policy making and Public Administration. She has a joint degree from both UC Berkeley, and the American University in Cairo, where she developed her academic and professional interest in the area of employee wellbeing, improved productivity, and effective communication within the work environment. She holds a B.A in English and Comparative literature and is a certified ESL instructor and language trainer at the American University, AMIDEAST, as well as The Central Bank of Egypt. Additionally, while in Egypt, she worked in Higher education, and Global Forwarding at DHL.
Coming to Luxembourg has been the best feather in her cap, it by all means could not get more diverse than that! Along the way, she has developed cultural competence skills, and learned to overcome linguistic, cultural, ethnic and geographic barriers. She strongly believes that diversity is the way to add meaning and richness to individuals coming together from various backgrounds. Bringing together various problem solving, thinking, and decision-making styles increases innovation and creativity. It is at this context that all individuals come together to bring benefit to the group, rather than to themselves.
In Luxembourg, she had first hand contact with the numerous facets of diversity and inclusion. She works with professional women who looked to re-establish their careers here, similar to what they had back home. She researches the integration of newcomers in the tertiary sector and investigates ways to help organizations create and sustain culturally-competent and diverse work environments. She mentors refugees and helps them identify opportunities necessary for their social inclusion, as well as their personal and professional development.
In her previous capacity as Secretary to the Arabic Association for Cultural Exchange, she worked to have art, music and culture bridge the gap between the Arab region and the Luxembourg artistic scene. She feels that art extends peace across barriers.
Samah does not believe in melting pots, where everyone works so hard to become a clone of someone else or follow ‘norms’ that have been set for reasons that do not relate to us, or our life experiences. She believes strongly in ‘living together independently’. We are all unique, and we can add so much to the increasing inter-cultural community we live in by contributing our cultures, values, traditions, and even spices. This is what really takes diversity and integration to a whole new level.