Morocco is full of bright and motivated students who have great potential. However the current reality is that very few apply and get admitted to competitive international universities. Many students therefore miss out on the tremendous opportunity that is to study in such elite international institutions. This leaves a huge pool of high quality candidates that universities are not tapping into. This problem is due to several factors:
- Moroccan schools (both private and public) are not aware of the opportunities available in American universities around the world. This is due to a lack of adequate training and a Language barrier since most do not speak English.
- There are no college counselors in Moroccan Schools. Therefore student do not know how to navigate the application process. The significantly complicates the process. Something as simple as getting a midterm grades transcript is extremely complicated to get in Morocco as we do not have mid term grades in our system. The same thing applies to predicted grades. Getting letters of recommendations is an entire other massive problem. Teachers and professors are not used to being asked to write such letters. It is hard to get them to accept and if they do it is even harder to get them to write them in a formal that would be useful in the application process. This means that the student has to really go out of his/her way to explain to the teacher what the adequate format of the recommendations is.
- The few French, Spanish and other such schools in Morocco, are biased toward their own countries. They do not want to help their students go anywhere else.
- Very little to nonexistent standardized testing prep.
- Students do not get the adequate guidance and opportunities of self exploration to discover what they are passionate about and what drives them.
Despite all of these issues, a handful of Moroccans still manage to break through the hurdles and make it to various international universities. Having gone through all of this mess ourselves, having seen the tremendous opportunities available in such international universities, having had the chance to go through such a transformative experience in these universities, we sought out to change this! We could not sit around while so many students were missing out! This was 5 years ago and this is how Addictest was born.
It all first started as a non profit. We set up an NGO, and during our school breaks, we would come back to Morocco to share our experience with students from Morocco. We held various workshops where we would go over the opportunities these students had ahead of them. We would walk them through the application process and share with them tips and best practices. We would also help them work on their profile, improve their public speaking skills and overall confidence. We would then follow up with the remotely while we were back in our respective universities. This lasted for two years.
We quickly notices how little of an impact we were having. We were only able to impact a few of individuals through since our workshops were only during the breaks. We decided to turn this into a social venture so as to be able to have the means to grow our impact and hire more individuals to help guide more and more students.
Turning into a social venture enabled us to stand on our own two feet and grow tremendously. Addictest now has two centers, one in Rabat and the other in Casablanca. We have also launched in October of 2016 our online program so as to enable students who cannot access our physical centers to also benefit. We reach several thousand students every year and work directly with several hundreds of them. We have also launched the Global Addictest Fellowship program, to attract bright individuals who have gone through the application process to come share their experience and guide our students through the process. We cannot be more proud of how far we have come.
Addictest stands as a bridge that helps solve the mess we highlighted in “the context section”. Addictest aims to open the doors of international education to Moroccans, with an emphasis on preparing students for admission to universities in the US. Our alumni have made it to top notch institutions and benefited from the direction of our teachers, who have attended competitive programs in the US.