Danya Nayfeh graduated with a BA in international studies and a minor in Islamic culture and civilization from the University of South Carolina in 2013. After spending time abroad, Danya Nayfeh "has been committed to furthering the Palestinian cause through local activism."
Danya Nayfeh was born in Virginia, attended elementary school in Charlotte and moved to Lugoff, S.C., in fifth grade. Her "father is Palestinian and spent his early years in the West Bank before the 1967 Six-Day War forced his family to Kuwait and Jordan and eventually the United States." She attended a winter break session, 'Two Nations and Three Religions in Israel and Palestine' at Galilee International Management Institute near Nazareth in Israel, as well as a semester attending Birzeit University in the West Bank.
Danya Nayfeh graduated in 2013 from the University of South Carolina Honors College with a BA in international studies and a minor in Islamic culture and civilization. She entered her undergraduate work dedicated to learning Arabic and deepening her understanding of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. She studied for a semester at Birzeit University in the West Bank and has been committed to furthering the Palestinian cause through local activism. Through her work with the Independent Commission for Human Rights in Ramallah and UNRWA in its Jordan Field Office she soldified [sic] her belief in the value and necessity of civil society efforts geared toward improving regional respect for human rights. She is now pursuing a J.D. in conjunction with her Masters studies and is looking forward to the opportunity to conduct research on the potential for international norm adoption in the Middle East."
Studied in Middle East
From a bio of Danya Nayfeh at The University of South Carolina:
- "Danya Nayfeh always knew she wanted to study in the Middle East. The University of South Carolina student’s father is Palestinian and spent his early years in the West Bank before the 1967 Six-Day War forced his family to Kuwait and Jordan and eventually the United States.
- “'I’ve always been interested in the Palestinian conflict and culture. I knew I was going to travel and study in the West Bank when I was in college,' said Nayfeh, a junior in USC’s Honors College majoring in international studies with a minor in Islamic culture and civilization. “I hope to gain a lot of insight into how internal politics work. There’s no other conflict that’s quite like that one.' She leaves in December to attend a winter break session, 'Two Nations and Three Religions in Israel and Palestine' at Galilee International Management Institute near Nazareth in Israel. She then will spend the semester attending Birzeit University in the West Bank.
- "And part of the scholarship funding for her trip is coming from what might seem at first an unlikely source: the USC Jewish studies program. 'I think that it is exceptionally significant that our program’s first study abroad scholarship is going to a Palestinian-American student for study in Israel,” said Stan Dubinsky, a linguistics professor and director of Carolina’s Jewish studies program. 'The Jewish studies program is not, at its roots, a program for Jewish students only, or even Jewish students primarily, although many Jewish students are advantaged by our having this program on the campus. No, the mission of Jewish studies is to bring educational opportunities to all of USC’s students.'
- "Nayfeh’s scholarship for travel comes from the Jewish studies program along with the College of Arts and Sciences and the political science department. 'In being able to participate in a positive way, in response to Danya’s desire to broaden her horizons, we are doing precisely what we were commissioned to do,” Dubinsky said. 'Our program’s contribution to the pursuit of knowledge and mutual understanding on the part of one enterprising Honors College student is something that we can all be proud of, insofar as it is emblematic of the spirit of cooperation and pursuit of peace that I believe underlies our university’s institutional character.'
- "Nayfeh, 20, was born in Virginia, attended elementary school in Charlotte and moved to Lugoff, S.C., in fifth grade. She said she is looking forward to the chance to become fluent in Arabic along with gaining deeper understanding of the Middle East. 'I hope to do international law, from the human rights side, after I graduate. So this is a great place to be thinking about those things,' she said.
- “'I think it’s awesome that it’s funded by Jewish studies. Those labels – Jewish, Muslim, Palestinian – we automatically think they don’t cooperate. I think it’s been incredible to be able to really talk with Dr. Dubinsky. We have slightly different opinions, but we always manage to have a nice, cooperative discussion. It makes me feel great that the Jewish studies program is open to this and done so much to help. It’s a good example for other programs and universities.”
Petition to United Nations against Israel
Signed a petition to halt the construction of the "Museum of Tolerance," claiming that it was on the Mamilla cemetery belonging to the Palestinian people, although this claim was denied by the proposed builders who wrote in part:
- "It is sheer, galling hypocrisy to attack the Wiesenthal Center for building a museum on what was a parking lot for a half-century, while in the not-too-distant past, the Muslim Supreme Council was ready to exhume all the remains from the actual Mamilla Cemetery in order to provide Jerusalem with a business center, factory and bank."
Carolina Peace Resource CenterCarolina Peace Resource Center.
- Law Students for Justice in Palestine, accessed March 31 2017
- Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, accessed March 31 2017
- A study in conflict: Honors College student heads to Middle East, accessed March 31 2017
- Urgent Action to Prevent the Jerusalem Municipality from Completely Desecrating Ma’man Allah (Mamilla) Cemetery, accessed March 31 2017
- Hypocrisy and lies fuel enemies of a Jerusalem museum, accessed March 31 2017
- Danya Nayfeh's Facebook Groups, accessed March 31 2017