Mahnoor Aftab came to the United States from Pakistan in 2016. She had completed her high school education in her country and had finished her first year of college there as well. She knew she wanted to continue her education but she did have concerns. “Just the thought of going to college in America was quite intimidating because I wasn’t aware of how the education system works here.” She added, “I was mostly worried about the environment in the college, different people including students and professors.”

Asnuntuck Community College was the first college she visited. She said selecting Asnuntuck as her college was one of the best decisions that she ever made. “I was relieved to see the nice and warm atmosphere in the college, everyone being respectful and warmly welcoming anyone that walked through the main entrance.” She added, “This was the thing that made me be certain of being a part of ACC without even seeing the classes or professors.”

Mahnoor said she has known that she wanted to go into the medical field since she was 6 or 7 years old. She found support at the college. “I met people who wanted to know what my passion was and what my goals in life were. The people were genuinely interested and wanted to help me make good decisions toward it.” She said there are many people to thank for her success. “If I list down each and every person’s name that has helped me throughout my journey at ACC, without a doubt it will start with the Dean of Students, to the faculty advisors, professors, students, security and custodian.” She continued, “As someone who was new to everything, every person made me feel welcomed and respected.” She shared, “The first person to tell me that I was no different from anyone else was tutor Susan Krane and as I received my Associate’s, the last person to tell me the same was Professor Joseph Finckel. And every person in between actually did make me feel the same.” She reflected, “I am the kind of person that rarely feels connected to someone, but it’s quite fascinating to know that I felt connected to every professor I met and I don’t want to let go.”

The 2018 ACC Liberal Arts graduate will continue her education in the fall at the University of Connecticut where she will pursue her Bachelor’s degree in Allied Health Science, with aspirations to apply to a Physician’s Assistant program. She will not leave Asnuntuck totally behind. “It’s really odd how a person finds interest in things he/she never dreamed of. I never thought of reading a single book just for entertainment or interest, but having read a Shakespeare play in Professor Finckel’s class I have sort of liked reading for fun.” The ACC alum said, “So for that purpose I will be taking his Shakespeare class this fall.”

Classes at ACC begin on August 28th. Visit www.asnuntuck.edu for more information. The Shakespeare course taught by Professor Finckel, will be offered on Tuesday and Thursdays from 10:35 a.m.-11:55 a.m.