An Educated Woman

Screens Wednesday, April 6, 5:00pm – Rutgers Institute of Jazz Studies

Film Makers

Khawla Al-Olefi2Khawla Al-Olefi
Emilya PiansayEmilya Piansay
Katebah Al-Olefi2Katebah Al-Olefi

Katebah Al-Olefi (Co-Director/Yemen Director of Photography) is a 17-year-old freshman at UC Berkeley. She was a member of the Oakland Unified School District school board. She also participated in the CHAMPS program Children’s Hospital Oakland for two and half years. She hopes to attend UCSF Medical School one day and get a Masters in public health.

Khawla Al-Olefi (Co-Director/Camera Operator) is 19-years-old and a landscape architecture student at UC Davis. She is a seasonal worker at the Rotary Nature Center located at Lake Merritt in Oakland. After college she hopes to attend UC Berkeley and get her Masters in Architecture.

Emilya Piansay (Co-Director/Producer/Editor) is a 29-year-old writer, director and film editor. Emilya received a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Journalism at San Francisco State University in 2009. In 2014 she received her Masters Editing in Motion Picture and Television from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco.

About An Educated Woman

In the country of Yemen, before the year 2001, former journalist Mufadhella Al Badeh applied for a visa lottery, specifically for educated women. A year later, she received a letter informing her that she had been selected to receive a visa and the opportunity to move her family to America.

February 14, 2003 Mufadhella Al Badeh and her family traveled to the United States. Her daughters: Khawla and Katebah both 7-years-old and 4-years-old at the time had no idea they were leaving one country for another. Nor did they realize the dreams their mother had in mind for them.

In the summer of 2013, as their family planned their family trip back to Yemen after ten years, Katebah and Khawla decided to take it upon themselves to film a documentary on their return to their home country.

Despite the initial excitement, the trip began a source of anxiety for the eldest daughter Khawla. As the trip lined up with her applying to college, many friends and family in Yemen questioned why she had yet to be married.

The stark contrast of their personal reality and the public expectations make it even more obvious to the sisters why their mother worked so hard to get them to America in hopes of giving them the opportunities they would not be afforded in Yemen. Upon returning to the United States, Khawla begins her first year of college and Khawla prepares for her high school graduation. Both are filled with excitement for prospects that await them by getting an education.