“I consider myself a servant student leader. I constantly strive to help my peers and other scholars at my college by mentoring them, motivating them to do better, challenging them to be great leaders and teaching them different ways to offer help,” explains Zaman Rashid, a student of Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte, N.C., and recipient of the 2013 Robert W. Scott Student Leadership Award.
It's this servant-leader philosophy that Zaman brings to his role as president of the college's academic honor society – Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) – and his volunteer work with Solace for the Children, an organization that provides medical care, education and leadership development opportunities for children in war-torn countries.
Previously a participant in the Solace for the Children program, Zaman came to the U.S. seeking treatment for a tumor that had taken away his ability to talk, eat and drink normally. Following multiple life-saving surgeries, he now volunteers for Solace, bringing groups of children from Afghanistan to the United Sates so they can receive medical care. Once state-side, he serves as an interpreter, translating between the children and their medical staff to ensure proper treatment.
“Zaman acts as a big brother to many of the children who arrive scared, emotionally and literally scarred, and unsure of what they will encounter in America after growing up in a war-torn country,” said Jennifer Conway, student life coordinator and Phi Theta Kappa advisor at CPCC. “He serves with a grateful heart and treasures his education in the U.S. and the life-changing opportunities that have been afforded him.”
In addition to volunteering with Solace, Rashid helps with various CPCC MAN UP events – an organization committed to increasing the population and retention rates among minority males in college – and enjoys getting others involved in CPCC's community through his leadership role in PTK. “Helping my peers brings me an inner peace that prompts me to serve more and do better,” Zaman explains. “I am passionate about continually motivating others and working diligently to help make the world a better place, beginning in my own community.”
As a result of his efforts, CPCC's PTK Chapter inducted a record-breaking number of members for the fall 2012 semester.
“Zaman embodies the qualities of a great student leader,” says Dr. Tony Zeiss, president of CPCC. “He expects the best from himself, he encourages others to be at their best, he works to serve the larger community and he is well-respected among his peers and faculty members.”
In addition to being service oriented, Zaman is also committed to achieving academic excellence in the classroom. He currently has a 3.737 cumulative GPA at CPCC and hopes to continue his education at High Point University.