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Text of Reem al-Forassy's Speech

Reem al-Forassy studied Business English at Yemen College of Middle Eastern Studies, and recieved her diploma in the department's inaugural graduation ceremony.

This is the speech that she gave on 9 June 2013 at the reception to celebrate the College's 25th anniversary and the graduation of the Department of English's first batch of Business English Diploma recipients.

Reem Speech

Good morning.

It's an honour for me to be welcoming our distinguished guests who came today to share our profound happinness in the event of the College's 25th Anniversary and the graduation for recipients of its Diploma in Business English.

It's my pleasure to speak on behalf of the female graduates on one hand and the Yemeni Woman on the other. Being a woman who has had the valuable opportunity to pursue my education in such a prestigious college which has certainly broadened my horizons to complete my Masters and PhD, I hope that each and every Yemeni girl will get the same chance to complete her higher education. This will automatically lead to her socio-economic empowerment (by empowerment, I mean having the ability to make her own choices and be independent).

This will be reflected in the prosperity and success of our contry. As it is internationally believed that the more we invest in education the stronger and more powerful each new generation will be, and as statistics have shown that women constitute two thirds of Yemeni society, if we pay more attention to the education of women the future outcome will be outstanding.

We can't of course forget our historical figures Queen Belquees and Saba, during whose rules Yemen flourished and attained a prestigious rank. It is agreed that history repeats itself, so a new modern Saba or Belqees will be born to reclaim the glory of Yemen. This Saba might be one of the graduates today. It might be me.

I would like to seize this valuable opportunity to express a heartfelt thank you to our parents, who have encouraged and supported us to reach this stage. My deep thanks are also extended to the YCMES team, headed by the president Mr Sabri who is trying his best to prepare the best environment for effective learning, following all the latest developments in the world of education. I owe a debt of gratitude to all the teachers for their endless support, patience and guidance, and also to my generous sponsor, Yemenia Yemen Airlines.

Last but not least, thank you so much for listening, and I hope you enjoy the rest of the ceremony.