Berkeley Today

Student Follows In Her Mother's Footsteps on Educational Journey to Berkeley College

Growing up, Antoinette Kassas heard her mother talk about her positive experiences as a student at Berkeley College. So when it was time for Antoinette to do her own college research, she knew where to start.

"My mom is so proud to be a Berkeley College alumna," said Antoinette. "She talks about the individualized attention and the good education the College has provided her. I decided I want the same experience."

Antoinette’s mother, Micheline Attieh, graduated from The Berkeley School in 1988 with an Associate’s degree in Business. The College’s promise of lifetime career assistance helped her secure a position at Columbia Savings Bank when she graduated, and later at Bank of America.

When Berkeley became a four-year college, Ms. Attieh decided to return to pursue a Bachelor’s of Business Administration degree. A combination of on-site and online classes allowed her to complete her degree in 2005, while raising her children as a single mother.

"The day I went to campus to pick up my cap and gown for graduation, I took my children with me," Ms. Attieh said. "It was difficult not to cry — I was so proud of my hard work and desire to succeed."

She hopes Berkeley will inspire similar confidence in her daughter, a student at Paramus High School, who will enter the Justice Studies – Criminal Justice program at the Paramus location in the Summer 2012 Quarter.

"Berkeley College has always been my choice for education," said Ms. Attieh, who now teaches at Dover Business College in Clifton, NJ. "Having the next generation of my family choose the same school overjoys me."

Antoinette said that she found her mother’s opinion of Berkeley to be true when visiting the College for the first time.

"I felt welcomed as soon as I walked through the doors," said Antoinette. "I know I have to work hard and maintain a good GPA, but I’ve already met some of Berkeley’s instructors. I know I will have all the help I could want or need."

Ms. Attieh said Berkeley College has come a long way since its days as The Berkeley School, but that the same core principles have withstood the test of time.

"The College has flourished, not only with numerous added programs, but in the method and quality of instruction," she said. "I will not be surprised to see future generations feeling the same pride in the school that I feel today."