AUGUSTA — Five Cony High School seniors have each earned a $1,000 Kennebec New Mainer Scholarship.

Sponsored by the Capital Area New Mainers Project (CANMP) and Hoang Realty, the scholarship helps immigrant students who graduate from a Kennebec County public high school pay for expenses associated with pursuing higher education. The five winners are Feed Abdulmohsin, Zahraa Al-Ali, Narges Al Badri, Shatha Al Hoshan and Malak Alkattea, all of Augusta.

Abdulmohsin left Iraq with her family in 2016 with hopes of finding a better education. She has excelled at Cony, taking several Advanced Placement and dual enrollment courses, according to a news release from Chris Myers Asch from the Capital Area New Mainers Project.

Abdulmohsin’s science teacher, Jeff DeJongh, extolled her dedication: “She exhibited an inquisitiveness and interest in learning that went far beyond earning a good grade.”

She will attend Husson University and dreams of becoming an optometrist.

Al-Ali came from Basra, Iraq, in 2014 and has made a strong impression on her teachers. Cony English teacher Bradford Davis says that Zahraa “has an unparalleled drive to succeed in every task that she undertakes, and she works hard to achieve that success.”


She plans to attend Kennebec Valley Community College and then earn a B.S. from the University of Maine at Augusta on her way to becoming a dentist.

Narges Al Badri Submitted photo

Al Badri, a native of Najaf, Iraq, arrived in Augusta in 2014. She is excited about pursuing higher education. “College is a huge opportunity for me, a way to thank my parents for what they have given me, and a chance for me to have a better life,” she said.

She will graduate early from Cony and plans to attend Kennebec Valley Community College to study radiology.

Shatha Al Hoshan Submitted photo

A native of Syria, Al Hoshan arrived in Augusta in 2019. She loves working with children and provides peer tutoring for ten special needs students at Cony.

Special education teacher Rebekah Titus notes that Al Hoshan is a “hardworking and caring” student who “is eager to help students in any way that they need.”

Al Hoshan plans to attend UMA and become a medical lab technician.


Alkattea came to Maine in 2015 from Iraq, and she has been very active in the Cony community – Chizzle Whizzle, tennis team, math team, National Honor Society, and Class of 2023 vice president.

“For many immigrants, pursuing a college degree is more than simply accomplishing a personal achievement,” Malak said. “It’s also about achieving the hopes and dreams of family members who were unable to receive an education because of their country’s problems.”

She plans to study neurology at Husson University with dreams of becoming a doctor.

The Kennebec New Mainer Scholarship was launched in 2019 by CANMP and Hoa Hoang, a refugee from Vietnam who arrived in the United States in 1975. Hoang graduated from Cony High School and founded Hoang Realty. She hopes the scholarships will help open the door of higher education to a new generation of immigrants.

CANMP is a cross-cultural nonprofit that welcomes refugees and works to build a thriving, integrated community in central Maine.

For more information, contact Asch at or 207-370-5246.



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