Interview for

Mohammad Wali Ferdous

12/7/2019

Interviewed By:

Ashar Ghumman

Date Interviewed:

Audio Recording of Interview
00:00 / 31:24
Summary

Mohammad describes his experience leaving Afghanistan for the U.S. in the anticipation of civil war, and his cultural adjustment to the individualistic American way of life. He speaks of his feeling at home in the U.S. nowadays, although practicing Islam is more difficult, and advises newcomers to study English and continue their education to further job opportunities.

Transcript
Other Interviews

Other interviews of this person can be found below:

Additional Notes
Outline

Narrator: Mohammad Wali Ferdous

Date: December 7, 2019

Location: Princeton, NJ


Summary: Mohammad describes his experience leaving Afghanistan for the U.S. in the anticipation of civil war, and his cultural adjustment to the individualistic American way of life. He speaks of his feeling at home in the U.S. nowadays, although practicing Islam is more difficult, and advises newcomers to study English and continue their education to further job opportunities.

Topics: Conditions back home, Immigration process, Religion, Cultural adjustment, Language, Education


Outline

Section 1: (00:00-11:42)

  • Conditions back home: Up until 2014, coalition forces were present in Afghanistan and things were better. However, after 2010, Afghans anticipating a change and a civil war were immigrating to different countries.

  • Immigration process: Some Afghans had an option to immigrate to different countries. Mohammad chose the US because he had been working for an American airline and had American friends.

  • Religion: There are some limitations to practicing Islam in the US, like praying during work or getting off from school on a religious holiday.

  • Cultural adjustment: There were many changes, but he felt he was prepared for the cultural changes because before coming to the US he had read about how individualistic societies functioned.

Section 2: (11:42-23:56)

  • Religion/Cultural adjustment: Doesn’t think that his faith played a major role for him in his transition to the US. He interacted with a resettlement agency but it wasn’t faith based.

  • Immigration process: His wife and kids were separated from him at the airport, and spent many hours in the airport. He felt like he was being treated like a criminal.

  • Cultural adjustment: US feels like home now, he’s met many people and is happy with the resources. He’s trying to get a professional job like he used to have in Afghanistan.

Section 3: (23:56-31:16)

  • Language: One of the most important things for newcomers is for them to know the language. For interacting with people, legal documentation, and getting a job, knowing the language is important.

  • Education: Advises newcomers to continue their education because they need it to get a better job.