A lot of people at the Rochester Institute of Technology are closely watching the situation in the Middle East. That includes a Libyan student with a close tie to the new prime minister.
Prime minister Mustafa Abushagur has been mentoring Abdelsalam Aboketaf since he started at RIT. Aboketaf is hoping the new Prime Minister can stop the protests, "they don't want the country to be stable and they don't want a good relationship with the united states to say oh, ok, this is terrorism, or you know, al quaeda is there," says Aboketaf.
As protests spread throughout the Middle East Aboketaf says securing his home country, Libya, is a priority, "before the economy, before the education, before anything is the security."
As Aboketaf explains, protests aren't the only thing making security a challenge, "how to collect the weapons from people how to control the borders."
Aboketaf says the prime minister's ties to the west could help him succeed, "he's been here like more than 35 years, and he is a decorated person, and he can take what he learned from here to libya."
Former colleagues at RIT say Abushagur's leadership style should enable him to turn things around for his country, "he would say the best thing is what's in the best interest of people, so it's not about politics, it's about people," says Harvey Palmer, the dean of RIT's Kate Gleason College of Engineering.
At RIT they'll be keeping a close eye on the situation in the Middle East, and on Mustafa. RIT President Bill Destler says they'll always be around should Abushagur ever need them, "we at RIT are very proud of him and if there's any way we can help we'd be delighted to do so."