“It dumbfounds me how the word ‘refugee’ is considered something to be dirty, something to be ashamed of. They have nothing to be ashamed of”
Luma graduated from Smith College in 1997 with a Bachelor of Arts and Anthropology and recently completed the Executive Program in Social Entrepreneurship at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. She is a Jordanian and muslim immigrant of Syrian descent, she received her U.S. citizenship in 2011.
Mufleh is the inspirational CEO and Founding Director of Fugees Family, Inc., a non-profit organization that uses soccer, education, and community building to empower refugee children to successfully integrate into the United States. A lifelong social entrepreneur, Luma has created several programs and initiatives that have gainfully employed, educated, and empowered refugees and immigrants in her community and beyond, with the Fugees Academy serving as a national model for refugee education. While only 20 percent of refugee students graduate from high school in Georgia’s DeKalb County, the Fugees Academy has a 100 percent graduation rate. These type of results helped Luma earn the 2016 Cournelle Award for Social Entrepreneurship from the Manhattan Institute.
Her story – and the story of the Fugees – illustrate both the American dream and the challenges of integration and discrimination that so many refugees face today. Luma is a 2016 Top 10 CNN hero whose story has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, ESPN, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Sports Illustrated, Forbes and more.
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