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Qatar alum wins scholarship to earn graduate degree in Canada

The Office of Fellowships is pleased to announce that Raghdan Alhennawi (Medill ’23), a recent alum of Northwestern University in Qatar, has received the McCall MacBain Scholarships Finalist Award! Next year, Raghdan will travel to Montréal, Canada, and pursue a master’s degree in urban planning at McGill University.

Photo of Raghdan AlhennawiBorn and raised in Syria, Raghdan has used his skills in journalism and data analysis in work with several different organizations, including the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, People Powered, and Deutsche Welle. At the latter, Raghdan contributed to two documentaries—A War Unfolding: The Struggle for Ukraine and War in Ukraine: A Week that Shook the World—that have garnered over a million views and reflect his commitment to advocacy for refugees, immigrants, and marginalized social groups.

Raghdan’s passion for advocacy was amplified when he and three teammates undertook an unusual adventure, cycling for eighty days from Turkey to China, crossing nine countries. Known as The Silk Road Biking Project, Raghdan’s journey aimed to spotlight the daily lives of folks in the Middle East and Central Asia.

During his time as a production manager at the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, Raghdan combined his technical skills with his love for sports, curating and producing over 200 videos and creative pieces that sought to enrich the global event.

McCall MacBain Scholars logoThe McCall MacBain Scholarships at McGill are Canada’s first comprehensive, leadership-driven scholarships for master’s and professional degree studies. The scholarship program brings together a diverse group of scholars who aspire to lead with purpose—those who have demonstrated leadership potential and an inner drive to make a positive impact in other peoples’ lives.

Raghdan is the first Wildcat to win a McCall MacBain Scholarship.

Contact Amy Kehoe at to learn more about the McCall MacBain Scholarships.