Ihtisham Mian '13
Kingsborough Community College ASAP January '13
Current student, Stony Brook University, biology major
What were your early impressions of ASAP, and how did they change over time?
At the beginning of the program, I admit that I joined simply for all the financial benefits I would be receiving, though I also knew that this was something that would help me graduate with honors and on time. It was only as I continued with ASAP that I realized that the program was more than just the financial benefits it provides. My advisors, Martha Greasley and Heidi Yu. were of tremendous help in planning my classes and helping me make hard academic choices. They made my time with ASAP and Kingsborough worthwhile and they made joining the ASAP program one the best choices I have ever made.
What was the most rewarding thing about being an ASAP student?
The most amazing aspect was that I knew, without a shadow of a doubt, that there were many people that I could go to for help. The ASAP advisors provide a huge reservoir of knowledge that I used to make the choices that allowed me to not only do well in class, but to have fun. I will confess that the MetroCards and textbooks did help quite a bit.
What, in your opinion, makes ASAP unique?
I’d only completed a year of high school in the United States before my parents sent me to Pakistan. When I finished high school and came back to New York, I was beyond lost. Even during my first semester at Kingsborough, I did not know that I was supposed to do. I realize now that it was joining the ASAP program that truly set me on track. The truly unique aspect of the ASAP program is how easy it is to join and just how easy your life is afterwards. You always have someone who wants to know how you are doing and there is always someone there to help you.
Looking back, how do you think that ASAP impacted your life?
ASAP was the first program that I joined at Kingsborough Community College. It was through ASAP that I, with the help of my advisor, joined the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. I was also advised to join the National Society of Leadership and Success, and began that process with great enthusiasm. In the end, I was able to graduate from Kingsborough with honors. At this moment, I cannot tell if I would have achieved this regardless of ASAP, yet it doesn’t matter. It was ASAP that helped me do this, and as a result, ASAP changed my life for the better.
What is one of the most memorable moments you had as an ASAP student?
The orientation that I had to attend before being accepted as an ASAP candidate was one of the most unusual moments of my life. I had never sung in public before and this terrified me. It truly put me out of my comfort zone and just made me feel good about myself. I began to believe that I could do anything.
What are your career goals and/or future plans?
I am currently a student at Stony Brook University and studying towards a bachelor’s degree in biology with special concentration in neuroscience. I am part of the Muslim Student Association and my college dorm Hall Council. I will volunteer at Stony Brook Hospital as I study and will take my MCATS towards the end of the year. Between now and applying to Medical school, I will study and simply try to have the time of my life. Someone once told me that this time comes only once, don’t waste it. I don’t plan to.