An enthusiastic group of students, staff and faculty from Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar (CMU-Q), a Qatar Foundation partner university, are contributing their time and talents to make the World Cup a success. Dozens of CMU-Q community members are working in a variety of areas, including logistics, health and safety, and fan experience.
Some of the volunteers are motivated by their love of football. Jeffy Jan, a business analyst at CMU-Q, is a fan of the Brazil, Spain, Argentina and Portugal World Cup teams, and she is excited to be a transportation team leader for volunteers. “I just wanted to be part of it,” she said. For her, the World Cup will be a busy month of volunteering and attending matches. “I have tickets to see each of my favorite teams, and right now I’m just trying to fit it all in.”
Stephen Heath, the facilities manager at CMU-Q, is an avid England fan and a long-time volunteer for football events in Qatar. “I do it because I am passionate about football, and I know I can use my talents and background to help.” Heath will volunteer as the health and safety team lead for one of the stadiums.
Several students are embracing the World Cup as an opportunity to learn and gain valuable experience. Business administration students Katrina Agcaoili, Yusufbek Nasriddinov and Ravshanbek Salimov, as well as biological sciences student Martin Sikhondze, will be interning with World Cup sponsors. For all four students, the internships are an opportunity to experience how corporations craft their brand image and marketing plan for high profile events.
Salimov said, “It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to contribute to the World Cup, and I am excited to be part of it.”
Likewise, senior students Malak Alseaf and Zendmene Khosbayar are using the skills they have learned at CMU-Q for positions at Host Broadcasting Services to assist with logistics.
“It is such a good opportunity to gain work experience, and also to be part of this important event for Qatar,” said Alseaf.
Saquib Razak, associate teaching professor of computer science, was inspired by seeing his students volunteer at the Arab Cup: “I attended the match and I saw a bunch of my students volunteering. I thought it looked like a lot of fun, and the World Cup was a great opportunity to do something new.” Razak will be a volunteer in venue management.
For all of the CMU-Q community members who are contributing to the World Cup, the event is a way to give back to the country where they work, study and live.
Maria Sultana Mina, a sophomore student in business administration, started her volunteer journey early by participating in the Street Child World Cup. The event, hosted in partnership with Qatar Foundation, included street children from 24 countries. Mina, who is an international student from Bangladesh, volunteered as an ambassador to the visiting teams.
“There are many street children around the world, including in Bangladesh, who don’t have documentation like birth certificates. Qatar is using the World Cup platform to help these children, and I am using my talents to give back to Qatar and my country.”
During the World Cup, Mina will continue to volunteer as a heritage site tour guide in Education City, in addition to an internship position with Host Broadcasting Services. “I love to do volunteer work, to meet people from around the world and show them this beautiful country,” she said.