Elena Shilova

Being a non-native English speaker and unfamiliar with online education, I was apprehensive about taking classes in that format at MGCCC.  I shouldn’t have worried.  My outstanding professors and the excellent education I’m getting have been a privilege and a blessing.  I have gotten the assistance I need when I need it and have enjoyed all of my classes.

Originally from Uzbekistan, Elena Shilova moved to New York City when she was 21 years old.  A few years later, her parents joined her.  She worked as an interpreter before deciding to join the military, which brought her to the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

“As a medic, I strive to be better at my job every day, so I wanted to take science classes and work toward a certification in my field,” she says.  “That’s how I found out about MGCCC.”

She also takes composition classes to improve her writing in English.  “I was never formally trained in English, so the process of writing in this language is still new to me,” she says. “Composition classes help me to explore the language, force me to structure my mind and provoke thought. There is still obviously a lot of room for growth for me in this area, but I am so curious how far it will take me. I love world literature, and the creative process of writing helps me to establish dialogue with the great minds of different epochs and countries. I travel and explore when engaged in reading. It is truly liberating.”

While reading is a hobby, she has a great love for four-legged creatures.  “I have two dogs, Marcy and Jack, and two cats, Bella and Luisa, who are my furry family in Mississippi. They greet me every day when I get home from work and keep me company,” she says.  “They enjoy just lying back on the couch and watching me read.  Being with them helps me relax after a tough day at work.”

She said her work family also play a big role in her life. “Being military medics at this particular time is often difficult and stressful,” she says. “We have been through so much together since March and have become even closer.  Along with my mother, my co-workers are my rocks.  I learn something new from them every day.”

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Tina Nguyen

“Because it has such amazing professors and great student life, MGCCC has given me the flexibility to progress in my academic career while working and building my resume for veterinary school. I’m also able to be involved in clubs such as PTK, which will benefit me greatly as I prepare to transfer to a four-year institution.”

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