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Hearing-impaired Sudanese boy proves his mettle in architecture

Afkar Abdullah /Sharjah
Filed on February 1, 2020 | Last updated on February 1, 2020 at 06.11 am
hearing, impaired, sudanese, boy, prove, mettle, architecture

(M. Sajjad/KT)

Sudanese national Ammar managed to overcome it through his genius mind.

Breaking barriers and overcoming tremendous challenges, Ammar Dahab became the first architecture engineer with hearing impairment in the Arab world.

He did it with the support of Sharjah City of Humanitarian Services (SCHS) and scholarship provided to him by His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah.

Born with a permanent hearing disability, Sudanese national Ammar managed to overcome it through his genius mind. His interest in sketching began when he was five and became his entry gate to architecture college where he obtained a bachelor's degree. He challenged the rejection of the admission committee to achieve his goal. He convinced them that he will take responsibility for his studies.

Speaking to Khaleej Times, his mother Um Ammar, said: My son was born with hearing disability, which became a barrier for him to communicate until I enrolled him to the Kindergarten and Hope School for children with hearing impairment in the SCHS. He learned sign language and attained writing skills, both in Arabic and English. He graduated from the high school scoring good grades, which later enabled him to enter the College of Architecture, which was his dream."

'Please give me an opportunity'

When Ammar applied to the College of Engineering at the University of Sharjah, he had to pass a meeting with the specialised committee that approves admissions. One of the committee members tried to discourage Ammar from studying this specialisation after learning that he had a hearing impairment and asked him to choose fine arts.

Ammar refused to give up his ambition and insisted on studying engineering. He asked the committee members to give him a paper and a pen in which he wrote: "Please give me an opportunity... I can". After monitoring the positive reaction on their faces, he requested the chairman of the committee to grant him access to one semester to prove his mettle.

Ammar scored excellent in the first semester which allowed him to complete the subsequent levels along with gaining the love and appreciation of his college mates and professors. Lecturers also asked Ammar to teach them the sign language to help him better.

"I am proud of my strong-willed son, who managed to achieve his ambition and prove that disability can be a catalyst and an effective challenge to achieve the 'impossible'. He persevered to become the first mute person to obtain a bachelor's degree in architecture.

He had also bought a car saving money, after obtaining driver's licence and became self-reliant," said the proud mother.

"One of the challenges that Ammar faced during his academic life was the absence of sign language interpreters at the university, especially during the first year. The Sharjah Ruler then formed Mawarid Centre to facilitate education for students with determination at the University of Sharjah. The centre provided sign language translators making it easier for the group to join any majors they wish for," said Um Ammar.

afkarali@khaleejtimes.com


Afkar Abdullah


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