Posted on September 19, 2017

Students from Texas A&M University at Qatar are banding together to raise money for their fellow students at Texas A&M University who have been affected by the recent Hurricane Harvey that caused devastating floods in Houston and southeast Texas.

The Qatari Students Association (QSA) and Al-Sanna student organizations have organized the Texas Tough Together festival, set for Wednesday (20 Sept.) in the Texas A&M Engineering Building in Education City, which will feature food sales, juice stalls, games, and sales of t-shirts and mugs to benefit victims of the hurricane. Donations will also be collected throughout the event.

Texas A&M President Michael K. Young said approximately 45 percent of Texas A&M’s main campus’s student body — which is more than 31,000 students (called “Aggies”) — come from one of the counties affected by Hurricane Harvey, with “many students arriving for classes with literally just the clothes on their backs after wading through waist-deep water in their hometowns,” Young said. “Many faculty and staff working to bring normalcy to the start of the school year have done so while dealing with personal hardship themselves.”

Najla Badar, QSA vice president, said, “We are Aggies, and we help other Aggies. I have friends who are in College Station at the main campus and I know they would do their best to help us here in Qatar if we needed it. It’s our duty to help our fellow Aggies.” Badar also said she has gotten to know several students from main campus who are studying in Doha for the semester whose families were affected by the hurricane. Maha Alsulaiti, QSA member and event chair, agreed, saying she was excited to involve the study abroad students in the day’s activities. “We want to show that Aggies are with other Aggies,” Alsulaiti said. “We are family who will always support each other.”

Texas A&M at Qatar dean Dr. César O. Malavé commended the students for their dedication to the Aggie family and their commitment to helping where and when help is needed. “Selfless service is one of the core values instilled in every student of Texas A&M, whether at the main campus or here at our branch campus in Doha,” Malavé said. “Though we are separated from our Aggie family by distance, we are united in our shared spirit of giving back and helping those who are in need. I’m proud of our Aggies for their generosity and selfless service, and for truly embodying the core values that unite all Texas Aggies.”

The public is invited come out to support the students’ efforts to raise funds to help members of the Aggie family affected by Hurricane Harvey. All proceeds will go to the Student and Employee Disaster Relief Fund announced by President Young on 8 Sept. For more about the fund, please visit http://president.tamu.edu/messages/harvey-disaster-relief-fund.html

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