P.D. Soros Fellowship for New Americans


Akbar Hossain, 2016

JD, University of Pennsylvania

Akbar Hossain is an immigrant from Bangladesh

Fellowship awarded to support work towards a JD in Public Policy and Immigration Law at University of Pennsylvania

Akbar was born in Bangladesh and later moved to Saudi Arabia, where his father was a migrant worker. His family immigrated to the United States on September 9, 2001, through the Diversity Visa Lottery. After the passing of his father, Akbar learned the importance of perseverance and community, as members of his hometown, Norristown, Pennsylvania supported and helped raise his family.

Being a minority and an immigrant provided Akbar with an early education in cultural differences that has enabled him to empathize and ease the adjustment of other newcomers. As a first generation college graduate, Akbar credits his accomplishments to the sacrifices of his parents and the encouragement of his community. While at Franklin and Marshall College, Akbar served low-income refugee families in Lancaster, Pennsylvania through the United Way and worked on asylum cases for persecuted clients with the Pennsylvania Immigration Resource Center.

A 2012 Truman Scholar, Akbar has interned for the White House, the US Department of Homeland Security, and served as a Truman-Albright Fellow at the US Department of Health and Human Services. Akbar serves on the Young Friends Steering Committee for KIPP Philadelphia Schools and has been appointed by the Norristown City Council to serve on the city's Planning Commission.

Akbar is currently pursuing a JD at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He hopes to combine his legal, nonprofit, and personal experiences into a role as an effective advocate for low-income communities and perhaps one day serve in local elected office.

  • JD Public Policy, Immigration Law | University of Pennsylvania 2018
  • BA Government | Franklin and Marshall College 2013
  • Toll Public Interest Scholar
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