AGE 14, GRADE 8 (2016)
Lilian Naserian is an eighth grader at Kakenya Center for Excellence. She loves mathematics and dreams of becoming a pilot, which is an occupation dominated by men in Kenya, as it is in many parts of the world. Her favorite part of the day is always when she sees an airplane up in the sky. Lilian marvels at it and often wonders aloud, “How does something this big, stay up in the sky with so much ease?” During the eighth grade field trip to Nairobi, Kenya’s capital city, Lilian visited an airport for the first time. She saw airplanes up close and went inside one of them, though it didn’t fly.
Lilian hopes that one day she will build a school, a dream inspired by Dr. Ntaiya. She believes in social change and knows that a woman can do something significant for her community. She encourages those who have supported her education to continue believing in girls’ education because of the many, positive ways her own life has changed.