Stanford University has accepted the application of Ziad Ahmed, a Muslim teenager, who had a unique answer to the question “what matters to you?”
On Saturday, Ahmed posted a screenshot of his letter of acceptance, which he received on Friday, on Twitter.
Everyone who received your application was inspired by your passion, determination, accomplishments, and heart,” the acceptance letter read.
You are, quite simply, a fantastic match with Stanford. You will bring something original and extraordinary to our campus – a place where you can learn, grow, and thrive.
Ahmed says that his acceptance came as a quite shock, “I didn’t think I would get admitted to Stanford at all, but it’s quite refreshing to see that they view my unapologetic activism as an asset rather than a liability.”
Ahmed explained his support for the Black Lives Matters (BLM) social campaign, saying American Muslims were a largely misunderstood and underrepresented minority.
“To me, to be Muslim is to be a BLM ally, and I honestly can’t imagine it being any other way for me,” Ahmed said.
“Furthermore, it’s critical to realize that one-fourth to one-third of the Muslim community in America are Black…and to separate justice for Muslims from justices for the Black community is to erase the realities of the plurality of our community.”
Ahmed, 18, has a history of community advocacy and social campaigning. He is the founder of Redefy, a teen organisation, and the co-founder of the youth-focused consultancy firm JÜV Consulting.
He also volunteered on the presidential campaigns of Martin O’Malley and Hillary Clinton, and delivered a TedxTalk about activism:
Ahmed, whose parents are originally from Bangladesh, has also been accepted to Yale and Princeton. He says he plans to major in International Relations, Science, Economics, or Ethnicity Studies.