“It takes a lot of dedication and hard work to be really good at what you do.” – Ismail Abdi Rahman
A Somalian born and raised in the United Arab Emirates, Ismail Abdi Rahman is one of our most enthusiastic teachers. He furthered his studies here in Malaysia and immediately fell in love with the country due to many reasons – mainly the people who welcomed him with open hands and treated him like one of their own.
He is an experienced debater whose career spawned over 3 and half years with huge background in public speaking. His achievements include being awarded the honor of being 11th best speaker and being in the quarter finals of the World Universities Peace Invitational Debate, amongst many other achievements locally and internationally. A delight to talk to Ismail’s interview shows us that we should not be scared of trying new things – it could introduce us to greener pastures.
1. What got you first interested in debating and public speaking and was this something you were always interested in?
Debating and public speaking were one of my main passions as a teenager. I always loved to voice my opinion no matter what the issue at hand was.If there was anything being discussed at home I’d make sure I was a part of that discussion, and also took part of different activities at school that involved public speaking.
2. What advice would you give to someone who is a little more quiet and nervous to attend your class?
I would tell them that being nervous is completely normal. That the only way to get rid of that nervousness is to be part of activities and clubs that give you the avenue to speak and voice out your opinion. Avenues like my share shop provide stress free environment to practice and get rid of your nervousness.
3. What advice you could share with someone who has an amazing skill and idea but is hesitant to teach a class?
I would say go for it. It is quite difficult to acquire a trade or a skill in a certain field. It takes a lot of dedication and hard work to be really good at what you do. It feels even greater to be able to share that knowledge and skills that you acquired with others who couldn’t have the same opportunity as you.
4. Is debating your main passion in life? Are there any other interests that you are passionate about? Or maybe an interest that you would love to develop?
Debating is one of my main passions, but my current top priority is to work on developing my academic and personal skills so that I can go to Somalia and help out in any way shape or form. I had the privilege of education and a standard of living that many of my fellow Somalis were unlucky to have, so I feel in a sense that I am obligated to share all my knowledge and experience with them to begin restoring our country.
5. Having taught two ShareShops already, what have you gained from the experience?
I had a lot of fun teaching those two shareshops. CultureRun shareshops allowed me the opportunity to learn how to teach the skills I had learned in the past. It was difficult but very rewarding and a valuable skill in itself.
6. Finally, is there any motto or mantra that you strive to live by that you would love to share with our readers?
Yes, it is to own every day of your life and make sure the choices you make are ones you won’t regret.
Ismail will be teaching both during Language & Culture Week as well as Life Skills week during Do Something Different.
He also has upcoming ShareShops on CultureRun – keep an eye peeled out for them!