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By Kristen Cole   Date: 9/8/11 Bookmark and Share

Ten Years After 9/11/01, a Positive Smith Legacy

This year, near the eve of the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States, two sisters from Afghanistan began their studies at Smith and Mount Holyoke colleges as part of the legacy of a man who died that day in 2001.

Asma Amin, 21, her sister, Salma, 19, and their six siblings were able to come to the U.S. from Farah Province, Afghanistan, with the support of the Peter M. Goodrich Memorial Foundation, named for a passenger aboard United Airlines Flight 175, the second plane to crash into the World Trade Center towers in New York City.

“I can’t wait for classes tomorrow,” said Asma Amin ’15, who registered for four courses at Smith. “I’ve already talked to some of my professors.”

Goodrich’s parents, Donald and Sally, established the foundation in honor of their son, to work with private and public secondary schools and colleges and identify educational opportunities for student exchanges.

Amin lived with the Goodrichs for several months when she first arrived in the country two years ago. Her older brother, Mati, a student at Williams College, was the first to be supported by the foundation. Gradually, all of the Amin children and their mother joined the two here. The children’s father, Roohul Amin, is a governor in Afghanistan and remained there for his work.

“We are joined by many who believe we can take affirmative steps to fashion a safer, more equitable world,” note the Goodrichs on the foundation's website. In addition to supporting students such as the Amins, the foundation has built two schools and a water reservoir in Afghanistan.

“Peter’s parents formed the belief that educating young Afghan children is paramount to eradicating root causes of violence and terrorism,” they wrote.

“I want to be a leader and help my country and my people,” said Asma.

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