Patrick MacDonald (C/O 2014): Student & U.S. Army Specialist

February Student Spotlight: Patrick MacDonald

Age: 21
Hometown: Bellingham, Ma
Major: Criminal Justice Management
Class: 2014

Patrick MacDonald is a member of the junior class at Nichols College, along with being a part of the United States Army Reserves. Despite being heavily involved with the Army, MacDonald finds time to be involved on campus. He holds one of the most important and time consuming campus positions, a Resident Assistant, a member of the Criminal Justice Club, a sprinter on the track team and  a participant at a local affiliate Crossfit.  When asked the most difficult part of managing all his activities, MacDonald notes the difference between military life and college life. He stated, “The military is very strict and you’re always on a schedule. In college, you have more freedom and you are responsible for waking yourself up for class in the morning.”

Like many other students, MacDonald fell in love with the small school and tight knit community that Nichols has to offer. He said that at other schools he would have just been a number in a class but at Nichols he has a name. Another reason Pat chose Nichols was because he got the opportunity to meet and speak with Professor Kimberly Charbonneau at “Accepted Students Day.” Charbonneau has been the biggest help to Pat over the past few years at Nichols and has set him on the right track for his career.  Her ability to obtain internships for her students is crucial in this.

MacDonald began to envision joining the military in his junior year of high school and then decided to commit during his senior year. He saw this as an opportunity to advance his career and get him started in the right direction. It has given him experience in the work field since his goal is to one day be a Massachusetts State Police Officer. Through the military, where he is in the military police, Pat earns “promotion points” toward his career. During this journey over the past couple of years, his parents have been his biggest support system. They have always supported what he does and his dad encouraged him to choose this route since he is in the Marines as well as being a police officer.

Upon graduating from Nichols in the spring of 2014, MacDonald hopes to continue his education to earn his Master’s degree in Criminal Justice. He plans on taking the State Police exam that is coming up this April. Once he takes the exam and graduates from school, his goal is to be accepted into one of the police academies in Massachusetts.

Hold the Autographs: Nichols College Rock Star, Saleha Ashfaq

Beginning college, Saleha Ashfaq had yet balance a job and school concurrently. While some would assume this was a result of poor work ethic or motivation, Saleha wasted no time proving that this couldn’t be farther from the truth – she quickly became a rock star among Nichols College students.

Throughout her college experience, Saleha has shown her worth as an employee. Every semester, this full-time college student has been occupied not only with her school work, but three simultaneous jobs. Her success is a catalyst of her will power, perseverance, motivation to learn, and her incredible ability to keep her hectic schedule organized.

Currently, Saleha is completing her second semester of her junior year at Nichols. She has already completed four internships while also employed as a Nichols’ teaching assistant and with Nichols’ Department of Career Services. Saleha gained more than one of her internships through the college’s Road to Success database. She has also attained other internships via student-professor networking and recommendations.

Saleha’s internship journey began when she interned with Hometown Bank of Oxford, Massachusetts at the end of her freshman year. From the internship description, she was aware they were looking for sophomores and juniors, but she sent her resume and cover letter regardless. She then followed up with Hometown Bank and secured an interview that offered her the position on the spot. Saleha has also interned with the Worcester County Memorial Park in their accounting department, with the Dudley District Court in the clerk’s office and as a tax preparer for AARP. Through these positions, Saleha, who is multilingual, has worked diligently to improve her communication skills, has conquered experiences that have made her fearful, has set herself apart from her peers, and has determined what she’s most interested in.

It is no surprise that Saleha is well respected among her peers, professors and co-workers. When Lori Smith, assistant director of career services, is asked about Saleha she responds resounding appreciation. Lori states that, “Her motivation and dedication are what really make her stand out. She is willing to take on any task and needs little direction. We provide her with the big picture of what we want and she does an amazing job.” Lori also commented that Saleha has incredible time management skills considering all she is involved in. She also remarked that Saleha is always looking for her next opportunity, continuously has a plan brewing in her mind and strives to gain as much professional experience as possible.

Saleha is the epitome of a Nichols College rock star, already succeeding in the business world. She demonstrates the power of working to achieve one’s dreams. Saleha has gone above and beyond what is expected of a college student and has proven her worth, not only as a student, but as an employee as well. It is without question that Saleha, combined with her resilient dedication and motivation, will achieve much success beyond the world of Nichols. She illustrates that hard work certainly does pay off.

Windfall: Literary Magazine!

Windfall. Nichols literary magazine provides a vehicle for student writers and artists to express their thoughts and ideas. The magazine is published once a year in book form and now adding a blog to post students creations all year round!

Check out their newly formed blog featuring all submited works at:

Please submit all poetry, short stories, lyrics, photography, art, or fiction writing to Windfall to be included in their hard copy Spring edition this year! All submissions must be sent to by February 28th!



Produced by the Bison for the Nichols College Community