What to Do with Rejection

I’m so proud of our interior designer turned gender studies undergrad researcher!

A photo posted by Mo Phongsavan (@moha_doha) on

You know me: I have ideas. Lots of ideas.  There’s always something I am willing or wanting to try, from ideas for books to research projects, to teaching techniques, the world seems full of possibility.

Two years ago we put in a research proposal to track the changes in marriage practices in Qatari society. The special emphasis was on women and education. Were educated women any different from their counterparts? Were the daughters of today any different from their mothers or grand daughters?

The grant was declined but the three of us, a colleague, a enterprising student research assistant, and myself knew our project was interesting. We believed in what we were doing and so we decided to go ahead. 8 months later, we had surveyed 355 female Qataris and interviewed 150 in focus groups. I presented some of our early findings at a conference in November, proud to be selected from among hundreds of submissions.

Today we were awarded the Student/Early Career Researcher Paper Prize at the WAPOR Doha Regional Conference at Qatar University!

Chocolates and a little applause will go a long way.

Whatever your idea or dream: see if there is a workaround. There usually is, though it may require sacrifice to see through. What would you do if there weren’t any obstacles?

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