We are constantly searching for inspiring stories of powerful women, as part of our Real Tales campaign we asked women to share with us their inspiring stories to publish. Reem Allam shares with us her empowering story of shifting careers and becoming the Executive Manager of the Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival (D-CAF), a multi-disciplinary contemporary arts festival that takes place in Downtown Cairo, at the age of 22.
“After being given the academic achievement cup for ranking first in my Business Finance graduating class, I decided to not work for a single day in the corporate sector despite all the societal pressure,” she says. Reem has a great passion for both writing and acting, “I decided to pursue a leading career in the sector that I am genuinely passionate about, the one that holds up to my values and sociological view of life and human nature, the one that would make me enthusiastically wake up for every morning,” she says.
The first step Reem took towards her career shift was applying for a scholarship to Edinburgh, Scotland to pursue a Masters degree in Arts, Festivals, and Cultural Management, while working at and experiencing the biggest performing arts festival in the world, Edinburgh Festival Fringe. “I successfully got my degree with distinction at the end of this self-discovering journey in Scotland,” she says.
Reem was recently nominated for the Social Impact Award at the UK Alumni Awards, launched by the British council Egypt, this award demonstrate the impact of UK higher education and celebrates the achievements of distinguished UK alumni from various countries.
She served as a juror for the Boska Komedia Theater Festival in Poland, as part of the international jury board selecting the Inferno Awards. “I was the only one representing the Arab world, and of course the youngest on the board (24 year old),” she adds.
She has also been selected, last July 2017, to participate in the Masterclass of Theatrical Immersion, organized by TAMAM association at the Avignon Theater Festival, one of the most important and largest contemporary performing arts events in the world.
“I was fortunate to realize my career passion early enough, not as early as knowing it before graduating, but at least once I discovered it, I took the risk, fought for it, and believed in myself”
Reem has recently been awarded with distinction a UK Master’s Degree in Arts, Festivals, and Cultural Management from Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh, Scotland. She has also been awarded the UK Santander Scholarship Award, the Academic Achievement Cup for Highest GPA in her Bachelor degree at the American University in Cairo, and the Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society Membership Award.
“I was fortunate to realize my career passion early enough, not as early as knowing it before graduating, but at least once I discovered it, I took the risk, fought for it, and believed in myself,” she says.
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