Hello everyone! I’m Parnian Agahi, an architecture B.A. graduate from Iran. I am trying to raise money in order to pay my tuition fees and costs of living to realize my dreams, consistently suffocated and delayed due to the injustices imposed on us in Iran, by continuing my studies in the Master of Urban Design at the University of Westminster.
I was born and raised in a Bahá'í (1) family, a minority religion systematically oppressed and persecuted merely because of believing in a Faith seeking peace and unity. Living in Iran is not easy for the larger society of Iranians let alone us Bahá'ís who face many discriminations and prejudices on a daily basis.
My family, for instance, is a living example of religious discrimination that occurs every day in Iran. Before my birth and after the Cultural Revolution in Iran, my father was expelled from university while he was studying to get a Master’s degree. Moreover, he was fired and lost his job as a teacher. My mother couldn’t get admission to the university for the same reason, either. Both of my brothers were rejected from entering universities despite their excellent grades. That said, my family is still one of the luckiest Iranian Bahai’s because none of us got killed or imprisoned after the Islamic Revolution of Iran.
As a Bahá'í youth, history repeated itself for me. Even though I got really good grades at high school and in the nationwide University Entrance Exam, I was rejected from entering university, just like my brothers and the rest of my family. Graduating with the highest grades from high school, I followed my aspirations for higher education by studying architecture at the Bahá'í Institute for Higher Education (2).
My passion for art and design grew steadily early in life, and it later was mixed with topics in humanities such as sociology and anthropology. Following this newborn interest through studying architecture, I had one foot on the ground while the other on an unpaved footstep of questions and doubts. It was a practice of creativity, objectively and subjectively. Through these interactions, I enriched my perspective of subjects and widened the way I defined human beings and their needs. This, in turn, helped me define my role as an architect better and developed a need to see architecture from another perspective rather than what I’ve been taught.
Meanwhile, I tried hard to experience different workspaces to improve my working skills as much as I could. I worked in three architecture companies each with a completely different approach to architecture. Then I decided to work differently in a constructıon company to observe what is going on in the real world of constructıon in each stage. I also tried remote working and all these work experiences along with my academic background have prepared me for starting a new phase of my long-term plan.
My dreams came through when I got accepted to some of the best universities in the UK to continue my education in urban design. Here are my admissions (2):
1. The University of Edinburgh MSc Architectural and Urban Design
2. The University of Liverpool MA Architecture
3. Manchester Metropolitan University MA Architecture and Urbanism
4. Cardiff University MA Urban Design
5. Kingston University MA Landscape & Urbanism
6. University of Westminster MA Urban Design
7. The University of Manchester MSc Urban Design and International Planning FT
Because of my financial situation, I have chosen the University of Westminster as it has the lowest tuition fee of £13,000. I am doing whatever I can to pay my tuition fee for the master’s program and also manage other financial matters. I have to pay another £13,000 for my 9-month living in London. This campaign is my final hope to cling to because the only scholarship from the University of Westminster that I am eligible for is a £2,000 tuition fee waiver which I will be applying for. However, even if I get the scholarship, I will still need £24,000 more for my first year of studies. I would truly appreciate it if you consider donating in order to help me turn my long-time dream of studying architecture and urbanism into reality.
Postgraduate studies will equip me to better serve my community and the world. I want to become an educator in architecture and urban design, particularly in serving my alma mater, BIHE, as well as serving the wider global community with my acquired knowledge. I believe in myself and think I will be able to go through this amazing journey in the University of Westminster. This will be my best possible chance to achieve my main goal in life.
Thank you in advance for the time and all your help and support.
Please note that I can’t make my dreams come through without your precious help!
(1) An oppressed religious minority in Iran
(2) An underground institute founded in 1987 as a response to the deprivation of higher education by Iran's government against the Baha’is
Can’t donate? Please share. Even a quick share on Facebook can help.
The average share raises $97.