This man has a doctorate.
This man is a scientist.
This man graduated university at the top of his class.
He’s also Syrian, and a refugee currently living in Turkey.
“I still think I have a chance to make a difference in the world,” he said from his home in Turkey. “I just want a place to do my research.”
One of his inventions is being used on the Istanbul metro to generate electricity from the train’s movement. But now, he’s getting a second chance, in a safer place.
“I learned today that I’m going to Troy, Michigan,” he continued. “I know nothing about it. I just hope that it’s safe and that it’s a place where they respect science.”
His story was shared by Brandon Stanton, founder of Humans of New York. It’s garnered support from around the world, including from President Obama:
“As a husband and a father, I cannot even begin to imagine the loss you’ve endured. You and your family are an inspiration. I know that the great people of Michigan will embrace you with the compassion and support you deserve. Yes, you can still make a difference in the world, and we’re proud that you’ll pursue your dreams here. Welcome to your new home. You’re part of what makes America great.”
“I just want a place to do my research,” the unnamed refugee told Stanton.
The father of two is also a stomach cancer patient.
“I think the cancer came from my sadness and my stress,” he said. “It’s in my stomach. It’s getting more and more painful.”
He wants to return to normal life, he says.
“I’ve been in Turkey for two years now. I’m dead here. I have no life, no respect, and my children aren’t going to school.”