Loyola University Chicago

Center for Experiential Learning


Meriem Sadoun

Meriem Sadoun

InterFuture provided me the space to travel and conduct research in the UK, South Africa, and the United States. Accepting my position as an InterFuture scholar meant I was committing to a rigorous two year program. One that paralleled the responsibilities and research activities of a graduate student. I applied to the InterFuture program the summer after my sophomore year, when I was studying abroad in Tunisia as a Provost Fellow. I arrived home from Tunisia at the end of May and by June I was off to my first research conference in Boston. That was the first of many conferences where I participated in workshops and seminars to develop and refine my research skills. As a result of the program’s holistic approach, I learned everything from research methods to cultural competency skills while I built my confidence both as a person and a researcher. Over time, I was able to transform my interests into a working academic project on the experiences of Muslim girls on high school sports teams. My research training prepared me to make every moment a research activity. If I was learning about the host culture, it meant I was able to understand my project better in context it was currently in. I spent a notable amount of time interviewing athletes and attending their sporting events. I made unexpected friends, guest starred on a South African radio show, and met a renowned scholar based in London. Through these experiences, I learned what it meant to be an academic researcher and the importance of cultural competency.