The first time Hashim Akeel saw Cheney, he was struck by how small it was. It was 2015 and Akeel, from Saudi Arabia, drove over from the west side to drop off his Saudi friend, who had received a scholarship from his nation’s government to attend Eastern Washington University. Akeel, now a 22-year-old senior psychology major, is one of 411 Saudi students who attend EWU. As a result, Eastern ranks as one of the nation’s top recipients of money from a Saudi government fund that helps students like Akeel study abroad.
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