The Whole View with Stacy Toth, Season 3, Bonus: Global Education Justice w/ Sola Mahfouz and Malaina Kapoor

Sola Mahfouz and Malaina Kapoor join Stacy to discuss their new book, Defiant Dreams, which shares Sola’s journey from Afghan refugee to quantum information researcher at a highly regarded education institution in the US. They share how education can be used as a weapon of resistance and liberation and the great power of stories and awareness for us all.

Find Sola Mahfouz & Malaina Kapoor:

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Key Takeaways


  • Sola Mahfouz was born in Afghanistan and immigrated to the U.S. in 2016 to attend college. She is currently a quantum computing researcher as Tufts University Quantum Information Group.
  • Malaina Kapoor is a writer from Redwood City, California. She previously served as a Fellow at PEN America, where she advocated for international human rights, press freedom, and election integrity. Malaina also served on the management team of a refugee resettlement organization and was the producer of In Deep, a nationally syndicated public affairs radio broadcast program. Additionally, she has received national awards for her poetry, personal essays, and short stories.

Defiant Dreams: The Journey of an Afghan Girl Who Risked Everything for Education

  • Sola shares her journey from being unable to attend school to eventually becoming a quantum information researcher at a highly regarded university. She also talks about the role access to technology and online resources played in bridging education gaps, especially Khan Academy.
  • So learn how women’s issues in the States and similar “equal rights” educated first-world countries align to some of the broader issues we see worldwide.
  • Sola and Malaina share about changes that are necessary to address education disparities for women and girls. They also discuss how important reading, watching, and educating ourselves about the stories of women all around the world is.
  • Malaina also reiterates there is great power in stories and awareness of these stories and experiences. 

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Note: Stacy and her guests are not medical professionals. This podcast is for general educational purposes only. It is NOT intended to diagnose, advise, or treat any physical or mental illness. We always recommend you consult a licensed service provider.

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