The American River Current

Faces of war

Within the next few years, those beginning in college or joining the military will have little to no memories of an America that wasn’t involved in conflict in Afghanistan—though for many Americans, the reality of war never hit home. (Photo illustration by Barbara Harvey)

November 3, 2015

The original version of this story spelled Hamed Hafezy's first name with an i in stead of with an e. Within the next few years, those beginning in college or joining the military will have little to no memories of an America that wasn’t involved in conflict in Afghanistan—though for many America...

Faces of war: Hamed Hafezy

American River College student Hamid Hafezy, who was born and raised in the Herat Province in western Afghanistan, left the region under threat of death by the Taliban. (Photo by Barbara Harvey)

John Ferrannini

November 3, 2015

The original version of this story spelled Hamed Hafezy's first name with an i in stead of with an e. When he first set foot in the United States, Hamed Hafezy thought he had a full ride scholarship at Kent State University in Ohio and could put years of struggle in Afghanistan behind him. D...

Faces of war: Mahjabeen Zazai

American River College student Mahjabeen Zazai sits with the lesson plans she used when she taught English in her native country of Afghanistan. Zazai graduated from high school in Afghanistan at the age of 15. (Photo by John Ferrannini)

Matthew Peirson and Cheyenne Drury

November 3, 2015

By Matthew Peirson and Cheyenne Drury Six years after she was shot in a random attack by an unidentified gunman, American River College student Mahjabeen Zazai and her mother were moved in 2011 from Pakistan to the United States through the International Rescue Committee (IRC). South Asia has bee...

Faces of war: Michael Monk

Unlike some of his peers at the VRC, retired Army Sgt. and former ARC student Michael Monk, 27, never wanted to leave the service. “Some people want to become doctors, firemen. … I wanted to be a soldier,” Monk said. (Photo by Barbara Harvey)

Barbara Harvey

November 3, 2015

Unlike some of his peers at the VRC, retired Army Sgt. Michael Monk, 27, never wanted to leave the service. Monk had wanted to be a soldier for as long as he can remember. “Some people want to become doctors, firemen. … I wanted to be a soldier,” Monk said. Monk describes his former role...

Faces of war: Colin Lewis

ARC student Colin Lewis was deployed to both Bagram and an area near Kabul in Afghanistan. Lewis credits the Veterans Resource Center with helping veterans succeed as students. (Photo courtesy of Colin Lewis)

Barbara Harvey

November 3, 2015

Before enlisting, Colin Lewis had desperately wanted to get out of Mississippi. “There’s not really much to do there,” Lewis said of his home state. Lewis needed a job to do that, and the men in his family had a tradition of service. He enlisted and was deployed to Afghanistan as a combat...

Faces of war: Dan Avegalio

After graduating from ARC and transferring to Sacramento State, where he got his bachelor’s degree in psychology, Veteran's Resource Center employee Dan Avegalio returned to ARC to work at the new VRC. According to his coworkers and those he's assisted, as a veteran himself, Avegalio brings a relatability to the program that helps students reentering civilian life to adjust. (Photo by Barbara Harvey)

Barbara Harvey

November 3, 2015

Just one month after his discharge from the Marine Corps, 30-year-old Daniel Avegalio began his college career by enrolling at American River College in the fall of 2009. Avegalio, who was deployed three times to Iraq, found himself in a situation similar to many recently-discharged servicemembers who ...

Sacramento a gathering spot for refugees seeking new opportunity

Within the next few years, those beginning in college or joining the military will have little to no memories of an America that wasn’t involved in conflict in Afghanistan—though for many Americans, the reality of war never hit home. (Photo illustration by Barbara Harvey)

Matthew Peirson

November 3, 2015

Sacramento has become a large gathering spot for people fleeing from war during the last 20 years. Nearly 30,000 refugees have resettled in Sacramento County from 1995 through 2014, according to the California Department of Social Services. Karen Ferguson, the executive director of the Internation...

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Faces of war