Relieved mom finally hears from Rice student studying in Egypt


by Tiffany Craig / 11 News

Posted on January 30, 2011 at 6:45 PM

Updated Monday, Jan 31 at 1:51 PM

HOUSTON—Students at Rice University are not only fascinated by the unrest in Egypt, but they were also concerned for a classmate who is currently attending school in Cairo.

Tom Campbell, Robin Richards and Marc Sabbagh were three of the 10 Rice students that traveled to Egypt last summer.

The students spent 10 days with Egyptian college students and now feel a stronger tie to the country.

Nine of the students came back from that trip.

Another student, Sean Graham, stayed in Egypt because he loved it so much.

Graham is an intern at the office of the president at the American University in Cairo.

"We haven’t heard from him actually," said Campbell. "I’ve sent an e-mail but I have no idea what the telecommunication situation is over there."

Finally, Sunday night Graham was able to get in touch with his mother to let her know he's OK. He hasn't decided whether to leave Egypt and return to the U.S.

Sean’s friends wonder if he’s actually glad to be there for history in the making.

"Egypt has long been the heart of the Middle East and the Arab world in particular" said Campbell. "It’s the linchpin in Arab-Israeli peace in addition to being a vital strategic partner for the U.S. So, what happens there we should all be really interested in and we should all be watching."

"It’s troubling as an American to see what could happen," said Sabbagh. "But we’re hopeful that something good can come out of this."

Graham had never traveled outside the United States until the trip to Egypt last year.