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Release Date: 
Tuesday, May 10, 2011

HFCC student wins prestigious Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship

HFCC Honors Program student Neam Alazawi recently won the prestigious Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship and is one of just 60 students from throughout the U.S. to win it.  She is the third HFCC student in recent years to receive this scholarship, which is valued at $30,000 per year to cover a significant portion of her educational expenses toward her bachelor’s degree.

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship honors excellence by supporting outstanding community college students with financial need to transfer to and complete their bachelor’s degrees at the nation’s top four-year colleges and universities.

Alazawi, who is a Biology major, holds a 4.0 grade point average and has served as a peer mentor at HFCC since August 2010. Her family moved to the U.S. from Iraq two years ago. In addition to volunteering at HFCC, she volunteers in the refugee assistance program for the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS).  She is also a member of the Arab American Women's Business Council and is a volunteer for the Boys and Girls Club of Southeastern Michigan. She helps her younger siblings with their school work and in March, received recognition from Phi Theta Kappa, the national honors society for two-year colleges, for her academic achievement at an awards luncheon in Lansing.

Dr. Gail Mee, president of HFCC, praised Neam’s exceptional achievements.

'Neam continues to work hard at her studies and she deserves this wonderful honor,' she explained, adding that this national award for an HFCC student 'is extremely important in showing prospective students about the opportunities available at HFCC.'

Dr. Nabeel Abraham, director of the HFCC Honors Program, is humbled by the work of such a young student and thoroughly pleased by her dedication to her studies.

'Neam is a wonderful, smart, energetic young woman who focused not only on helping her community, but in pursuing her education and achieving her career goals,' he said. 'I have no doubt she will continue to exert a tremendous impact on her community, fellow students and colleagues with whom she will one day work within her career,' he added.

Alazawi was surprised when she learned of the news.

'My parents and I were very delighted to learn about what Jack Kent Cooke has offered me. At this point, I really do not have to worry about the money; instead, it is just my studies that I will commit my time to. I feel fortunate and honored. It makes me feel more confident of myself and the drive to achieve more,' she said.

Earlier this year, she, along with HFCC Honors Program Student Batool Ali Saad, was honored at the The All-Michigan Academic Team Awards Program and Luncheon March 24 in Lansing.  The two attended the awards luncheon with Dr. Gail Mee, president of HFCC.

Alazawi has some definite plans for her future academic endeavors and career.

'I have devoted my time since attending Henry Ford Community College to better myself and help others. With the great help I am receiving from the Jack Kent Cooke foundation, I hope to continue in this same manner. I plan on attending Wayne State University to earn my bachelor’s degree in Biology. I would like to thank Dr. Abraham for his help, support and guidance. The Honors Program makes it less difficult for students to pursue their career goals in every way possible. I highly recommend it to those who plan on transferring to expand their education further,' she said.

To learn more about the HFCC Honors Program, please visit, or contact Dr. Nabeel Abraham at 313-845-6460, or via email at  To learn more about the Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship, please visit