Shippensburg University sophomore Ali Sina Sharifi is the newest member of Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education’s Board of Governors. Appointed by Governor Josh Shapiro, the 20-member board establishes broad educational, fiscal and personnel policies and oversees the efficient management of the State System.

At Ship, Sharifi is a member of the Wood Honors College and a political science major. He serves as a member of the Student Government Association, University Forum and is a resident assistant in the residence halls. Last summer, Sharifi landed a prestigious internship with the US Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

Sharifi was born and raised in Afghanistan but was forced to escape after the Taliban took over Kabul in 2021. At the age of 17, he spent several months in refugee camps in Qatar and New Jersey before eventually arriving in Pennsylvania. Just two days after coming to Pennsylvania he enrolled at Shippensburg University and became an active part of the campus community, openly sharing his story with faculty, staff and students.

His experience in his home country and at his new home at Shippensburg University is his inspiration for joining the Board of Governors.

“I will do my best to serve the students and staff of Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education. I watched the educational system in Afghanistan collapse and destroy the dreams of my whole generation and I know this will have a serious impact on the future of that country. I now live in Pennsylvania, and this is why I will take my duties on the Board of Governors very seriously,” said Sharifi.

Sharifi’s service to the Board of Governors will conclude upon his graduation