Ridha Al-Wishah

Overcoming Obstacles, Achieving Excellence


Ridha Al-Wishah was born in a refugee camp in the Middle East. He is now an academic and campus leader with a long list of awards, accomplishments and involvements.

Faculty members say that the challenges he has overcome give him seriousness of purpose and a broad worldview that enriches the classroom and campus.

“Ridha Al-Wishah is a student to watch because very evidently he is going places,” says Michael Twomey, professor, social sciences. “He is a student of whom we will be proud to say graduated from our campus.”

Ridha maintained a nearly perfect GPA while participating in sports and numerous other campus activities. He earned multiple academic honors, including a first place award for French. He’s also a boxing champion and an enthusiastic soccer and tennis player. In addition to his many extracurricular activities, Ridha carves out time to mentor recent immigrants and other international students.

“I take pride in the fact that some student would ask me for assistance,” he says. “It means they are willing to learn and do well, and I am willing to assist them in their goals.”

He is a “smart and driven person who shows natural leadership skills,” says Mitch Sollenberger, professor, social sciences. “He has the potential to be a difference maker.”