RICHMOND, Va. -- Aida Pehlic is like a lot of young college students. She’s wondering how she'll pay for her higher education. That's why she was very happy to be awarded a $1,000 scholarship through the KLM Foundation.
“It was really nice to find out I would get some financial help," Aida said, “especially because I didn't want to have that burden on myself or on my parents."
Aida is a double major in psychology and business with a minor in French.
Her parents went through a lot to get their daughter to VCU; surviving the Bosnian War that took the lives of tens of thousands.
"My mom, she and some of her family survived the genocide over in their city. But they lost a lot of their family members," she said. "My dad, he was on his side of the country fighting for Bosnia's independence and he ended up getting shot in the arm and the lungs."
The two didn't know each other at the time, but managed to leave Bosnia and settle in the United States.
"They ended up meeting here in 1999," Aida said. "They fell in love, got married, and then they had me."
Wanting to help others and honor her parents, Aida learned to knit Bosnian slippers and donated them to the homeless. She learned to cook traditional Bosnian foods and donated it to her mosque throughout Ramadan for people to break their holy fasts.
“I'm just really grateful for the way that they raised me and the values that they instilled in me," she said.
Building those values... is Building Better Minds.
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