Meet Noora Qasim
Education Support Specialist
School of Humanities & Social Science
Your co-workers say you have a special heart for helping Reynolds students, and that you are persistent and tenacious. Were you always so determine and caring?
I have done many volunteer jobs in hospitals and refugee shelters in Iraq. Since then, I have always had a strong desire to help others. Engaging myself in such activities taught me valuable skills that do not appear in job descriptions, such as patience, caring, effective listening, and being mindful of others’ stress. Knowing that my work has a huge impact on others is what motivates and makes me enthusiastic about my responsibilities. When I started working in the ESL department at Reynolds, I recognized the importance of bringing these qualities to this position.
Tell us about your job here at Reynolds.
My top priority is showing students honest willingness to have them as students at Reynolds.
I am determined to look for ways to help ESL students, boost their self-esteem, and encourage them to constantly seek help or advice, and guide them through the college regulations without overwhelming them.
What is your favorite thing about your job?
Having the opportunity to help students find their way to finish this program successfully. Meeting and getting to know students from diverse cultural backgrounds. Enjoying the challenges I face during the process of helping the students.
What do you find most challenging?
Most of the ESL students need to develop a new language in order to accomplish their challenging goals to start a new life in the United States. This actually makes me take the responsibility to make this transition as attainable as possible so that they do not lack motivation or become discouraged to finish.
The language barrier makes ESL students dependent on the ESL department to get started in college, such as applying, following through on their admissions’ requirements, scheduling placement testing, enrolling in classes, and completing their financial aid applications. It is essential to be patient all the time because it takes a while for new ESL students to adapt to the college setting.
What is your favorite thing to do in Richmond?
I am pursuing a double major, business administration (to transfer to VCU to major in Financial Technology) and Accounting (with intent to take the CPA Exam). I am also taking online courses in computer programming so, studying is my main concern. In my free time, I go to the gym. I enjoy cooking. I also love going to art galleries and creating stories about the art pieces, especially modern art. I love instrumental music concerts.
If you won millions of dollars in a jackpot lottery what would you do with the money?
Buy a house. Help my family and friends, have one million dollar grants for students who have no family support, start my own business, and start up an organization dedicated to helping underprivileged children.