Nimaa Osman Miss Somalia 2019

My name is Nimaa Osman and I am senior at Hunter High School. My family comes from Somalia, but I was born in a Kenyan refugee camp. We immigrated there to find peace and safety after the war had begun in Somalia. After 6 long years of living in refugee camps we finally came over to the United States in 2004. I don’t remember much of Africa beside the stories I am told. Being brought here so young, it wasn’t very hard for me to get accustomed to this new life. As for my parents is was a bigger obstacle. Though this did not affect me directly it did affect me second hand.

Being the first generation to grow up in the U.S. there was many things that I had to find out for myself. The biggest challenge was navigating the school system. My parents have never attended school so there was only so much they knew of how it worked. In their eyes as long as I was able to attend, which was more than they were ever given, they thought it to be enough.

I didn’t have a lot of the support and understanding as my classmates did in several areas. This disadvantage is something I struggled with for many years.

As  junior in high school I began to realize that I wasn’t the only student coming from that same background struggling. In an effort to support my peers, I established Hunter High School’s inaugural African-American Association. Our organization focuses on academics, community service, and school involvement.

I wanted to ensure that students like myself had an opportunity to be involved in school wide activities, and had a means to express our culture with our peers. As our association’s first president, I coordinated our participation by volunteering our services at The Boys & Girls Club of Murray, Utah. We also collaborate with other clubs within our school such as Latinos In Action, Art Club, and Distributive Education Clubs of America.