Skip to Main Content
Student Success Global Connections

Miami Regionals student first to complete LDI program in Luxembourg

Senior Hussein Al Mafrachi has accomplished a number of milestones in his final year at Miami University Regionals as he blazed a trail that should inspire many more to follow in his footsteps.

Student Success Global Connections

Miami Regionals student first to complete LDI program in Luxembourg

#Hussein Al Mafrachi()

Hussein Al Mafrachi

Senior Hussein Al Mafrachi has accomplished a number of milestones in his final year at Miami University Regionals as he blazed a trail that should inspire many more to follow in his footsteps.

He was the first Regionals student to participate in Miami’s Digital Innovation Semester in Luxembourg as well as the first from another country to do so. Mafrachi was born in Iraq, where he lived before coming to the Middletown area as a refugee in 2014 to join some of his relatives. 

At Miami, he was honored as a 2021 Gilman Scholarship winner, which awards about 1,500 students across the country each year with funding for study abroad.

Mafrachi’s achievements are even more impressive considering he had to overcome cultural and language barriers. He spoke no English when he landed in Middletown in 2014 and participated in an English as a Second Language program to fulfill his dream of going to college. He chose Miami Regionals to further his education due to its reputation and affordable degree programs.

Marianne Murphy, professor and chair in the Computer & Information Technology Department, said she was impressed with Mafrachi when she met him.

“He’s very collaborative. He was able to listen closely to his advisors, and in spite of cultural and language differences, he followed the complexities of the curriculum and requirements to achieve his goals,” she said.

Taking part in the Luxembourg Digital Innovation (LDI) semester this fall was a unique chance for Mafrachi to explore more opportunities in his major of computer and information technology while learning about cultures and businesses in Europe. 

Students in the LDI program spend four days per week in tech-enabled roles. In Mafrachi’s case, he interned with Miami’s Dolibois European Center where he helped update the website, conducted user experience surveys, made recommendations to improve attendance tracking across the center, and more. 

In addition to the internship, Mafrachi, along with the rest of the cohort, completed a client-based capstone project working for Before & After, a home design website. On Fridays, they visit local tech companies, learning about their business models and making personal connections. Participants also earn a minor in digital innovation as part of their studies. The program is designed to be an immersive experience in the world of work, similar to what students will encounter after graduation.

“This has been great to learn what it’s like to work in real-world situations and gain networking opportunities with real companies,” Mafrachi said. “I am now interested in possibly working in Europe after I graduate.”

Erin Brandyberry, manager of the Digital Innovations Centers at the Oxford campus and one of Mafrachi’s advisors, said the LDI program provides students with valuable experiences that prepare them for their professional careers.

“They gain confidence, independence, and professional and cross-cultural experiences. Students who study abroad tend to be very desirable in the job market, and a program like LDI is a strong case for that,” she said “Hussein broke new ground for Regionals students. We hope this could be the beginning of many more Regionals students taking part in the LDI study abroad semester.”