My name is Nala Chehade and I am a junior at Virginia Tech working towards degrees in International Studies, with a concentration in Security and Foreign Policy, and History with minors in Spanish and Middle East Studies. Although I was born and raised in northern Virginia, my family traveled often. I wanted to study International Studies since I was young, understandably due to my global experience domestically and abroad. I added a History major during my sophomore year, after completing HIST 2346: History of the Middle East. My favorite course taught me the discrepancies between the reality of Middle Eastern daily life and Western stereotypes. I hope to serve the Middle East through policy change. Later in life, I hope to serve students as a History professor.
Virginia Tech helped strengthen my abilities by offering a multitude of leadership positions, research opportunities, and meaningful relationships. My top 5 strengths are analytical, deliberative, achiever, responsibility, and context. This means I am an executing, strategic thinker. I use these skills to make the world a better place, often through my servant leadership style. I learn best by doing; therefore I encourage others to learn by example. I believe education in its many forms is crucial to forming world leaders, especially in an organized system.
I hope to be recognized as a Keystone Fellow because I have used the Aspirations for Student Learning to inform my campus and community involvement. I would like to share these experiences with other students, especially by further developing the Keystone Program at Virginia Tech. As my “This I Believe” Personal Statement demonstrates, I struggled to adjust to life in Blacksburg. I felt my dreams were too large for the small town. With help from my mentors and peers in the Division of Student Affairs and College of Liberal Arts & Human Sciences, I learned to bloom where I am planted.