I aiming to have my business located at as many hospitals, college campuses and sidewalks that I can penetrate. - Wagas Janjari
Wagas Janjari, B.S. '16
At age seven Wagas Janjari moved from Saudi Arabia to a little town in Sudan called Abu Hajar. He said, it was an interesting place. Dirt roads, donkeys as a form of transportation, chickens and goats running around the house. During the weekend, Janjari and his uncle use to take a double barrel shotgun and ride their donkeys 20 miles away to hunt gazelle and birds. Knowing quite well, within this forest there’s other reptiles and animals that could kill them. It was during these activities that Janjari was able to learn his greatest skill; learning the subtle nuances of the forest and being able to spot minute details quickly.
A ten-minute walk from his house was the Blue Nile River. At sunset Janjari use to put on his favorite green sandals, blue shorts, white shirt and walk to the river and reflect for hours. As he fills up his water gallon and starts to sip slowly, his mind starts to wander off in curiosity. What if there was a bridge over this river that could help farmers to the other island? What if the nearest hospital wasn’t three hours away, would have my grandmother been saved from her heart attack? Janjari was only nine years but its this type of reflective thinking that has giving him the ability to deconstruct complex situations and finding their elegant simplicities.
Now at age 20, nine years after he moved to America, Wagas looks at life in a different way. Pained by the lack of infrastructure in Sudan that has led to the demise of close relatives’, Wagas is in a pursuit to becoming an opportunity creator. That means doing whatever it takes to gain the knowledge, experience and resources to build systems that are powerful enough to create opportunities for others.
At high school, he was SGA president, an International baccalaureate student and a soccer player. At his time at George Mason University, he founded a non-profit organization in South Sudan and worked closely with the United Nations to build housing for refugees.
This summer Janjari, flew out to Shenzhen, China to design and manufacture concession stands that will be stationed inside hospitals campuses, college campuses, and sidewalks in the DC and Baltimore metropolitan area and sell prepackaged grab n’ go items such as fresh juices, salads and wraps. He is orchestrating a plan to hire 70 employees and 50 stationary stands within the next three years.
When he’s not too busy working, he bikes around DC and neighboring areas with his ID only, leaving his phone and wallet, riding until he gets lost and then figuring out ways to come home!