Release Date: 
Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Ford senior electrical engineer calls HFC his "perfect place"

Ahmed Alkirsh

HFC alumnus Ahmed Alkirsh was recently promoted to senior electrical engineer at Ford Motor Co. in Dearborn. Alkirsh, who was a non-traditional student, credits this promotion to the education he received at HFC.

“This promotion was a big stepping stone for me, career-wise. I would not have been able to get it, as well as my bachelor’s degree, if I didn’t attend HFC,” said Alkirsh, who lives in Dearborn with his wife, who also completed some coursework at HFC, and their four children.

Inspiration from engineers

Although he was an outstanding student upon graduation from Edsel Ford High School in 2000, Alkirsh was unsure what to study. In 2001, he enrolled at HFC due to the advantages of cost, location, convenience, and ease of access, while working a full-time job. He took several classes but didn’t declare a major.

In 2003, unsure of which career to pursue, Ali took a break from his education. Making the decision to quit school was one of the hardest Alkirsh had to make. He had no doubt that he would return to finish his education.

“Working a full-time job in the auto industry and interacting with electrical systems and electrical engineers gave me insight," he says. "I started to do more research into the engineering professions. The years were moving very fast while I focused on making a living and starting a family, which delayed my return to school. Once I did, however, I was more focused and had a clearer vision for my future."

Back to school

In 2007, Alkirsh returned to HFC, which he called the “perfect place.” His previous credits at HFC gave him a head start, and he was familiar with the campus. This time around, Alkirsh knew he what he was majoring in: engineering.

Alkirsh transferred to the University of Michigan-Dearborn, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering (EE) in 2012. Recently, he has been accepted into UM-Dearborn’s master’s program in EE.

HFC is one of the “best starting platforms”

“HFC played a critical role in my decision to restart my education,” Alkirsh said. “Throughout the period I was not attending, I received reminders in the mail that kept me engaged mentally and always thinking about going back. The College has one of the best starting platforms for reaching career goals. One piece of advice I would give to high school students who are undecided is to utilize all available resources like early college programs and visits to potential schools like HFC. This allows them to learn about different career paths to consider. That will save a lot of time and effort in realizing their goals.”

HFC President Russell Kavalhuna noted that Alkirsh’s success is part of HFC and the Dearborn community's story.

"Ahmed Alkirsh’s story is not just inspirational, it is a demonstration of how Henry Ford College helps students succeed throughout their lives," said Kavalhuna. "Our College is rooted in our community, and we will do all we can to help every student achieve their goals in life. Congratulations to Ahmed on becoming a senior electrical engineer at Ford. We welcome every student who wants to achieve a better future."

See a video version of this story, courtesy Yemeni American News: