In The Light: Affan Mian

Katie Curtis

Traveling to Colgate from Peshawar, Pakistan, Affan Mian has decided to devote his college experience not only to excelling in academics but also to leaving his mark on the student body of the university.

Mian is a double concentrator in Economics and International Relations with a focus on the Middle East and Europe. Despite his rigorous academic schedule, Mian continues to challenge his time management skills by remaining involved in various clubs and activities at Colgate. He is a member of the Budget Allocation Committee and Konosioni, is a Community Leader in the first-year area and is involved in Project Afghanistan activities and events.

Among all of these involvements, Mian also decided to study abroad on the Geneva Study Group in the spring of 2013.

“It was a transformative experience both in terms of intellectual and personal growth. I have always had an obsession with international diplomacy so Geneva was an intellectual heaven,” Mian said.

Mian traveled to more than 20 countries and visited places that any professional diplomat would dream of visiting. Not only were his travels an experience of a lifetime, but Mian also learned valuable lessons from each of his destinations.

“This experience gave me a vision for what I wanted to do after Colgate and also helped me carve out my intellectual niche. Inspired by what I learned in Geneva from Professor Rutherford in the Political Science department, I am writing my thesis on issues of liberalism and democratization in the Middle East,” Mian said.

Mian’s studies have been greatly rewarded in his time at Colgate, as well as his extracurricular involvements. His passion for student leadership began with his election as head-boy of his high school, which cultivated the qualities that transferred so fluidly at Colgate. Mian has also participated in the  Muslim Students Association, ALANA affairs and the Colgate International Community.

When asked about a particularly influential part of his Colgate experience, he was stumped. He claims that there have been numerous experiences that have shaped his time here.

“My involvement in student groups in general, in every capacity, has been the hallmark of my Colgate career. I have learned more there than I have learned in my classes. The leadership positions that I have held in various clubs have shaped me as an individual. The mistakes I made have been the best part since they helped me discover my weaknesses and work to improve them. Clubs and activities at Colgate for me have been a continual self-improvement exercise.”