Rashid Chico Kosber

Her Campus got the opportunity to interview, Rashid “Chico” Kosber, one of the new freshman senators for the school year 2013-2014.  This is your chance to learn about one of the dedicated members of the student senate committed to bettering life here at Amherst.  Chico answered a few questions about his country, his schooling, his activist work and more!

 

HC: Where are you from?

Chico: I am from Cairo, Egypt.

 

HC:  How long was your flight to Amherst?

Chico: Coming here was an eighteen hours flight, connected in France for an hour stop. 

 

HC: Have you traveled this far before?

Chico: Yes, South Korea which is about fourteen hours away.

 

HC:  If I may ask, what is your ethnicity?

Chico: Yes, I'm actually half Korean. My mother is Korean and my father is mixed. My grandfather is Egyptian-Turkish, and my grandmother is Palestinian Lebanese.

 

HC: What languages do you speak?

Chico: I speak English and Arabic. I can read and write in both languages and I can sort of read  Korean.

HC: What is the temperature like back home?

Chico: It's usually around ninety-eight degrees Fahrenheit and the coldest is 41 degrees Fahrenheit;

 

HC: So, have you see snow before?

Chico:   No I haven't! I am excited.

 

HC: What do you enjoy to do?

Chico: I love dogs. I have a dog at home and I really miss my dog, Coco.

 

HC: What causes were you involved in?

 Chico: The Government of Childhood and Motherhood which was recently demoted  to a council. I worked with things like child trafficking, organ trafficking, female genital mutilation and female circumcision.  We got to see the numbers, how it happens and the culture effects and why it's so hard to eradicate it. We went to a village that was dealing with issues of female circumcision and how it happens across the Egyptian population. Ninety-five percent of females undergo female circumcision, regardless of race or religion.  It is an African tradition, not strictly Christian or Muslim.  It's illegal therefore you cannot perform the procedure in a hospital.  This is a problem because there was a very famous case about a girl name Bodour, I even did a research paper about it.  She was twelve and ended up bleeding out and dying.

They picked a few of us and we had to learn a bunch of statistics. We ended up being observers at the Egyptian delegations and the convention of the rights to a child in Geneva.  We got to watch the child experts ask questions and see the different regulations and standards you need to do before you can be ratify any law.  As observers we were not allowed to speak in front of the entire debate but we had a chance to present unofficially. We were not allowed to speak in official capacity, we weren't even eighteen! We were kids.

 

HC: Was it a nerve wrecking experience?

Nervewrecking, no. It was interesting, we had to focus on key issues--like child labor and child trafficking, those were my two main issues. It was a semi-debate.  The experience was interesting because I had something to say.