20-year-old advocates girls’ education



Malala Yousafzai, who is a leading contender to win the Nobel Peace Prize, arrives for an appearance on "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" on Tuesday, October 8, 2013. Yousafzai was shot in the head and neck in a 2012 assassination attempt by Taliban gunmen, but has refused to be silenced as an advocate for educating Pakistani girls. (Zelig Shaul/Ace Pictures/Zuma Press/MCT)

From writing about life under the Taliban rule in Pakistan to a murder attempt, Malala Yousafzai has many accomplishments for a 20-year-old.

In Dec. 2008, the Taliban, who believed in a strict practice of Islam, banned girls from going to school since female education was against their religion. Soon, Yousafzai anonymously began blogging for the British Broadcasting Corporation and, according to bbc.com, she shared her wishes for girls to have an education.

The ban against female education was lifted in Feb. 2009 after an interview on “Capital Talk.” Gaining recognition, her identity was revealed. In Dec. 2011, she got the National Youth Peace Prize.

On Oct. 9, 2012, Yousafzai was shot by a Taliban militant riding home from school. Fortunately, the bullet traveled through her shoulder and she survived.

According to britannica.com, soon the president of Pakistan launched a $10 million endowment for girls’ education in Yousafzai’s honor. The Malala Fund was also created to support girls’ education globally.

In 2013, Yousafzai was named one of Time Magazine’s most influential people. Then at 17 years old, she became the youngest person to win the Nobel Peace Prize.

Currently, Yousafzai attends the University of Oxford, still fighting for girls’ education. According to malala.org, she hoped that one day every girl would choose their own future through an education.