“Here, you can live a better life,” says Islam. Compared with the agriculture-based economy in Bangladesh, “you have good jobs” and educational opportunities. That’s not to say he doesn’t remember his home country fondly.
“There is no single day that I don’t miss my country,” ruminates Islam. “Every single day. Every single moment, I miss my country, my environment, my old school, my friends.”
Before relocating to the United States, Islam completed much of his secondary education in Bangladesh. He finished his senior year at Warren Mott High School, among whose students Macomb Community College has a “really good reputation.”
Islam, who started at Macomb in the fall of 2018, notes that the college was his first choice. A couple of his relatives had previously attended the college before transferring to a university and now have successful careers. This prompted him to ask, “why not Macomb?”
Contributing to Islam’s success at Macomb are the Reading and Writing Studios and the Learning Centers. Each day, he spends an hour utilizing these resources before class begins. Islam notes that he especially appreciates that students have the advantage of free tutoring. While similar services were available in Bangladesh, they were expensive. Even above the resources, his favorite thing about campus is that people from all backgrounds are openly welcomed.
“I think the best thing about Macomb is the diversity,” says Islam. “There’s not one community of people. There’s a lot of communities.”
In his down time, Islam enjoys playing cricket and soccer, and participates in the Metro Detroit Cricket League during the summer. In addition, he likes to interview academically successful students, asking them how they maintain their grade point average.
“Can you give me five minutes?” Islam will first ask before proceeding with questions about his peers’ study habits. “How did you get this score? And, how do you work every day to get this score?”
Islam also serves as a translator for his family. “Nobody speaks English very well in my family, and I’m the first person who is coming to school or college,” he says. “I need to do all of their official things,” which include doctors’ appointments and banking.
After graduating, Islam hopes to transfer to Wayne State University or The University of Michigan – Dearborn to continue his studies, with a minor in Arabic.