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Sarah Zanabli

PSA student Sarah Zanabli standing outside in front of a tree smiling at camera.


WVU is the perfect distance from home- it is far enough to have the college experience by living independently but close enough to link up with my family on the weekends in Charleston, WV. It is also the most affordable college that I applied to. Lastly, the large size of the institution allows me to meet people from all over the world but it's small enough to get to know Mountaineers personally; this really helped me feel a sense of community and belonging as a second-generation immigrant.

What is the BEST reason to attend WVU?

The best reason to attend WVU is the fact that it is large enough to host a diverse student body but small enough to get to know them personally. The people here are what make this University home. 

What is your favorite Mountaineer memory?

During the snow blizzard about a year ago, class was cancelled but students took to the streets and the hills behind Woodburn hall to sled on pizza boxes and backpacks. Students joined and cheered each other on, as if we knew each other. The sense of community, adventure, and fun is always present at WVU because of the quality of the students that attend this institution. 

Why did you want to become a PSA?

I wanted to become a PSA because I think it is my responsibility to represent Muslims, first generation immigrants, and minorities who attend this wonderful university by sharing my stories that they may be able to relate to.

What did you learn from the PSA experience?

I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to take this class and form connections with high-achieving students and faculty. I still remember when my friend Noor Dahshan, who is now an alumni, used to rave about this class and the infamous professor who kept everyone on their feet. I have continued the tradition of telling my friends how awesome this class is, as they already know I got to speak personally with President Gee, Vice President Mesha Poore, the Mountaineer, and many other esteemed speakers and leaders. I enjoyed refining my speech-giving and speech-writing skills and I am quite happy that I have an updated resume and cover letter. I’ve already used the cover letter I wrote in this class to apply for an internship which was extremely helpful. Lastly, I learned about leadership, how to market yourself, and other professional skills you need in the workplace and life in general. Although we were online, I still feel like I gained a great deal of valuable knowledge that I will use for years to come.