June 28, 2022

Lourd Yousef Finds Success through Mesa’s Associate Degree for Transfer Program

By Ashley Atkinson

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At the age of 19, during her senior year of high school, Lourd Yousef had to flee her home in Aleppo, Syria. She arrived in the United States and immediately started working three different retail jobs to help support her family, and create a new life from nothing. She eventually secured a higher-wage job at an insurance company call center, which allowed her to have afternoons free, so that she could enroll in college classes and complete her education.


“I knew that furthering my education was the best way to increase my income, support my family and create a future legacy of my own,” Lourd stated.


She quickly realized many jobs require a degree, most especially higher paying jobs outside of the retail industry. She wanted to attend college at a campus with a diverse community where she could increase her understanding of the English language, have top rated professors, and attend a wide variety of classes during the afternoon and evening hours. San Diego Mesa College became Lourd’s top choice, and she enrolled in Mesa’s Associate Degree to Transfer program in order to obtain an Associate’s Degree in Business.


During her three years at Mesa, Lourd could often be found in the Library/Learning Resource Center (LRC) after work, where the environment was peaceful and conducive to studying. Lourd appreciated the fact that there was always a librarian or other staff member available to answer questions, and Lourd often remained in the LRC until closing time. The writing skills that Lourd gained during her time at Mesa eventually led to a promotion at the insurance company where she still works, first to the Operations Management team, and then the Sales team in April 2022. She is currently working in Account Management, and hopes to become an Executive Account Manager in the future.


Graduating from Mesa College meant a lot to Lourd, as it was her first time graduating, participating in Commencement, and seeing the results of her hard work and long nights of studying, usually after long days at work. She credits her success to the support of her family, her great professors, and the program she was offered at Mesa. Although she did not find a lot of free time during her full-time job and full-time school phase, she now takes a little more time to indulge in one of her passions: golfing. Her future plans include planning to settle down and stay in the US, but other than that, she will go wherever life takes her.


Lourd also credits her professors as being her role models, and would like to personally thank Accounting Professor Joseph Preimesberger with the following message:  “Thank you for making me love accounting with the simple and easy way you taught it. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience with us. You cared about the student success and understanding, which I am grateful for, especially during Covid. Hopefully we will cross paths either at National University, or on the golf course one day. Thank you, Lourd”


Lourd graduated Mesa in Fall 2021 and is currently continuing her education at National University in order to obtain her Bachelor’s degree in Finance.


Learn more about Mesa College’s Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT) Program.

Tags: Alumni, outreach-profile