Through thick and thin – Mother and daughter work together towards completing their degrees
Nothing is impossible when a mother and daughter set a goal and join forces to achieve it. For Sofin and Sawdah Asim, they knew that if they wanted to get their college degrees, they had to work together to get to the finish line.
For the past two years, this power duo has overcome all the obstacles on their path towards completing their degrees at Broward College and this spring; they will be graduating. 19-year old Sawdah will be walking the stage on May 7 to collect her Associate of Science Degree in Computer Science and mom, 45-year old Sofin will be doing the candlelight ceremony for the Nursing program on May 8.
Overcoming personal challenges
Three years ago, the two moved to the United States from the United Kingdom after Sofin’s mom, Sawdah’s grandmother, fell ill and needed someone to take care of her.
They enrolled at Broward College just a few months after, and while they knew it would be demanding, they didn’t know how hard it would be to balance everything. “Numerous times we felt like just giving up. Taking care of my mother on top of all the school work, the financial stress, and more, we felt overwhelmed,” explains Sofin.
However, as they say, teamwork makes the dream work. Over the next two years, they relied on each other for support and encouragement. They would try to have their class schedules match times and campus location. But, more often than not, it just wasn’t possible. Sometimes, after taking care of grandma in the morning, the pair would spend 10-12 hours at school, where Sawdah would have to wait hours for a ride home,while Sofin completed her clinical.
The Journey at Broward College
“There were no doubts when choosing Broward College. We had to go to the same college so we could share the car. Since I knew the Nursing program was well-recognized and that the College had a great overall academic record, I knew that for Sawdah it was a great choice as well,” says Sofin.
Sawdah agreed. “I am happy I attended Broward College because the professors are truly dedicated and committed to watching you succeed.”
While the Nursing program demanded full focus from Sofin, Sawdah started to join different student clubs on Campus. She became a member of the Honors Student Committee, taking on the role of Secretary since Oct. 2017. She was also a member of Phi Theta Kappa and the Muslim Student Association.
She also took advantage of the study abroad opportunities. She applied to the scholarship and went to Japan for a business course. “Japan was a fantastic experience, and it reminded me so much of the U.K. It also allowed me to practice my Japanese,” says Sawdah, who also speaks German, French, some Spanish, and is currently learning Korean.
Reaching the Finish Line
Now that the end to their educational career is near, both mother and daughter are grateful that they didn’t give up.
“Despite all the challenges, I am proud of what we did. We are graduating college and education is worth all the obstacles. If I had to do it all over again, with the same challenges and obstacles, I definitely would,” says Sawdah.
“Now that I’m almost done, I think all that I went through was absolutely worth it. This is such a rewarding profession, and I can’t wait to be out there in the field helping others,” adds Sofin.
As graduation approaches, this duo has decided they would rather watch each other walk the stage than do it together. Sawdah will attend the commencement ceremony with her classmates and friends as Sofin cheers her on from the sidelines. Sawdah will attend the Nursing’s candlelight ceremony to support and celebrate her mother’s achievement.
“What we love the most about the College is that it is a welcoming place for everybody regardless of their age, religion, or race,” says Sawdah. “People should know that it is never late to pursue your dreams.”