GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — As the world tunes in to the World Cup finals this Sunday, one West Michigan college student is getting to view the match firsthand.
Aijamal Kasymova was one of the lucky 5,000 volunteers selected to work for about a month in Qatar for the FIFA World Cup 2022. She said her job differs from day to day.
“It can be either like the marshal near the entrance or work with media or it can be team leaders,” she said.
While her peers back in Grand Rapids are busy studying for final exams, Kasymova continues to work with the World Cup until midnight daily and then works on her full courses after that.
“Aijamal is a very, very strong student,” Aquinas Business Professor and Advisor Kerri Orders said. “So she has really been keeping up with everything. I don’t think she’s sleeping a great deal.”
Orders said when Kasymova told her about the upcoming internship, they worked hard to ensure the bulk of her coursework would fall at the start of the semester. Since Aquinas emphasizes experiential learning, Orders understood how impactful an internship like this one means.
“We tried to do some alternative scheduling and add a couple of online classes,” she said.
For Kasymova, the months-long internship and time spent in Qatar is something she’ll never forget.
“They are really open to whatever your religion is. Whatever you pursue, whoever you are. They just want to get to know you. They are really welcoming here,” she said.