Alassane is just as jolly as his smile suggests. For example, this  13-year-old eighth grader can’t name his least favorite subject because he insists, “I like all of the subjects!” When pressed for his favorite subject he does narrow it down to physics and chemistry, because he feels they are the most challenging.

He is such a good student that he tells us he is not at all nervous to take the big national graduation next year when he completes ninth grade. Alassane says, “I will not be nervous to pass the DEF exam, because I know I will learn all my lessons.”

That kind of confidence will serve Alassane well as he pursues his dream job: working as a high-level official in the Malian government. He says, “After my studies I would like to be a minister (government official) to help my country. I think education will permit me to realize my dreams.”

Alassane attends Mali Rising’s Neways Academy in the small village of Touban in far southeastern Mali, near the border with Burkina Faso and Cote D’Ivorie. The village is located in the Sikasso region, which receives more rain than any other region in Mali and is known for fruit and vegetable farming.

Thanks to Neways (now Modere) who donated his school, Alassane has a chance to turn his good spirits into good learning and a better future!