Teen Writes #BlackLivesMatter 100 Times In College Essay, Earns Stanford Acceptance
Ziad Ahmed, 18, wanted to make a point when he answered the Stanford essay question, "What matters to you, and why?" in his college application. So, he wrote #BlackLivesMatter 100 times on his paper, which earned him an acceptance at Stanford University.
Ahmed, an American of Bangladeshi origin, admitted the acceptance stunned him. He thought Stanford would pass on him. "It's quite refreshing to see that they view my unapologetic activism as an asset rather than a liability," he told Mic.
Ahmed, who practices Islam, said his faith and his activism against social injustice, particularly among African Americans, are bounded together. "To separate justice for Muslims from justices for the black community is to erase the realities of the plurality of our community," he said.
Ahmed's essay answers, however, received mixed reactions from netizens. Some said he copped out in explaining his views on activism. Some described what he did as an "attempt to look progressive," as per Telegraph. Others, however, took notice of the rest of his accomplishments, which likely boosted his college application.
The teenager was once invited to the White House Iftar dinner and volunteered for the Democrats' campaigns for Martin O'Malley and Hillary Clinton, as per Roots. Ahmed also delivered a TEDxTalk on being a Muslim teen in America. He founded Redefy, a social injustice advocacy group for teens. He talked about this in the video below.
Ahmed also received acceptance letters from Yale, his father's alma mater and Princeton but he remains undecided for now. He also has not yet figured out his course but his interests are in economics, international relations, studies on race and ethnicity as well as cognitive science, Daily Mail reported.