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Marwa El-Sherbini scholarship

Marwa El-Sherbini was born in Alexandria in 1977. She was the daughter of Ali El-Sherbini and Laila Shams, both of whom are chemists. During her schooling at the English Girls’ College in Alexandria, she was head girl. She went on to study pharmacy, successfully completing her degree in 2000. From 1992 to 1999, she also played for the Egyptian women’s national handball team. In 2005, Marwa El-Sherbini came to Germany together with her husband, the geneticist Elwi Ali Okaz. Their son was born in 2006. In 2008, Okaz obtained a doctoral research position at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics, and the family moved to Dresden.

At a playground in Dresden in August 2008, Marwa El-Sherbini was verbally abused and called an “Islamist” and “terrorist” by Alex Wiens, an ethnic German immigrant from Russia. The police were contacted and Wiens was charged.  At the court hearing on 1st July 2009, Alex Wiens killed Marwa El-Sherbini just as she was about to leave the courtroom after giving her testimony, and critically wounded her husband. The public prosecutor’s office spoke of a lone perpetrator, acting with “an extreme xenophobic motivation”. On 11th November 2009, the Dresden Regional Court sentenced Alex Wiens to life imprisonment for murder.

Marwa-El-Sherbini-Park Marwa El-Sherbini geboren 1977 in Alexandria ermordet 2009 in Dresden © Karl J. Donath/TU Dresden

The Marwa El-Sherbini Scholarship

The “Marwa El-Sherbini Scholarship for Open-mindedness and Tolerance”, the result of a collaboration of the Free State of Saxony and the State Capital Dresden, is awarded in memory of Marwa El-Sherbini. For this purpose, DRESDEN-concept e. V. has set up the Marwa El-Sherbini Foundation. The aim of the scholarship programme is to promote future executives and specialist staff who take on social responsibility, are involved or interested in politics, and who stand up for freedom, democracy and fundamental human rights.

Applications in German could be submitted to DRESDEN-concept e. V. until August 15, 2023.

The scholarship holders since 2012

Scholarship holder from 2012 to 2014

Scholarship holder from 2015 to 2017

Scholarship holder from 2017 to 2019

Scholarship holder from 2019 to 2021

Scholarship holder from 2021 to 2023.

Flaurita Maffokang is a migration social worker and social work student at EHS and the Marwa El-Sherbini Scholarship recipient since October 2023.

To the official announcement in German: https://www.medienservice.sachsen.de/medien/news/1070098