Tasfia Tazri Howlader, 17, was in the 10th grade when she came to Broward College as a Dual Enrollment student. As a Bangladeshi American and first-generation college student, Tasfia looked for a way to diversify her education and secure opportunities that opened doors for her future. This May, Tasfia will walk across the stage twice as she graduates with a high school diploma and an Associate of Arts with a focus in Business Management degree from Broward College. 

How it All Began  

After a few Dual Enrollment classes, her 10th grade year, Tasfia learned about The College Academy. A program where high school juniors enrolled full-time in the two-year program receive a high school diploma from The School Board of Broward County and an Associate of Arts (A.A.) degree from Broward College. Seeing the potential in the program and how it aligned with her aspirations, Tasfia quickly joined what would become an integral part of her educational journey.

“As excited as I was, it was a little nerve-wracking to come into the world of college as a junior in high school,” said Tasfia. “It was definitely a journey learning how to navigate being in high school, taking college classes, and figuring out exactly what I wanted to do with my future. In the end, I learned that Broward College is one big family that welcomes everyone.”

New Experiences Ignite a Passion to Help Others

Once at Broward College, Tasfia didn’t waste time. She joined multiple clubs, learned valuable lessons in her classes, and embarked on new adventures. 

A member of Broward College’s North Campus Student Government, Muslim Student Association, Medical Volunteers Club, and Multicultural Dance Club, Tasfia did it all. As a serious fan of Hamilton and Frozen, Tasfia is immensely grateful for her Student Government connections, as they gave her the opportunity to meet Jonathan Groff during his visit to the campus last year.

After finishing her first year at Broward College, Tasfia was fortunate enough to travel to Ghana for the summer through an experiential leadership fellowship with the Nyah Project. As one of their 12 annual fellows that went to Ghana, she learned firsthand how travel and philanthropy awaken leaders. Her time spent in Ghana ignited her pre-existing passions for philanthropy and education. 

Beyond that, Tasfia is also the founder of a registered non-profit organization, Amader Shopno Inc., which translates to ‘our dream’ in Bangla. Her nonprofit provides school supplies to kids around the globe while also aiming to strengthen younger generations through the power of education.

“As someone that has a non-profit and thinks about opening my own business when I’m older, I took a lot of classes at Broward that taught me so much,” said Tasfia. “My Accounting class taught me logistics, my Public Speaking class taught me to speak like a leader, and my Math classes reinforced my already strong understanding of the subject.”

No Signs of Slowing Down

In the fall, Tasfia will head to Nova Southeastern University, where she was dually admitted to its undergraduate and graduate school. Tasfia will pursue a bachelor's degree and a Master of Medical Science (MMS) degree.

Looking back on her experience with The College Academy, Tasfia is grateful for the bridge from high school to college that allowed her to accelerate her academic goals and dreams.

Inspired by Tasfia’s story? Learn more about The College Academy program and other dual enrollment opportunities offered at Broward College.


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