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CDI College Growth Story: Afsaneh from North York

Monday, January 18, 2021

The second feature in our CDI College Growth Story series goes to none other than Afsaneh S., a dedicated pharmacy instructor at our North York campus.


The Dream


Raised in Iran, Afsaneh found herself in an environment of healthcare and academics. Her mother was a teacher, one brother was a professor, and the other brother was a doctor. This future Canadian-immigrant knew what she wanted from a young age and stopped at nothing to achieve her goals.


While still in her native country, Afsaneh received her bachelor’s degree and immediately started teaching. She loved her students and received the same affection in return. Teaching has never been a profession for her; it’s a passion.


Immigration Experience

When Afsaneh moved to Canada, she was unable to continue her master’s degree, but told us, “Coming to Canada, from day one, I knew what I wanted to be.”


Afsaneh started in the Pharmacy Assistant program at CDI College and worked as an education assistant at a reputable Toronto public school while raising her children. She expressed the difficulty of juggling work, education and a raising a family in the year 2016, but with a smile, she overcame these obstacles and went on to become one of CDI College’s prized possessions. “That’s life,” she says.


To gain more experience in the pharmaceutical industry, alongside studying and working, she also put in hours at various pharmacies – Shoppers Drug Mart, Rexall, etc. To her, it was anywhere she could learn more about the industry.


Her pharmacy instructor quickly noticed Afsaneh for her impeccable work ethic and often gave her the chance to help guide the class. After graduating with honours, Afsaneh had both the experience and academics required to move up in her career.


In 2017, Afsaneh was officially hired as a full-time soft skills instructor at CDI College. She continued to put in hours at the pharmacy because, for Afsaneh, the grind doesn’t stop. Today, she’s a full-time pharmacy instructor at CDI College.


The Impact of COVID-19


“There is always a way. We just need to get out of the box. Even if we don’t have everything available – be creative,” Afsaneh says.


Afsaneh is a prime example of one of the most resilient instructors that CDI College is proud to employ, especially through the impact of Covid-19. She emphasizes the importance of mixing education and fun and clearly proves this theory through her virtual pharmaceutical teaching methods, like for example, with compounding.


According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), drug compounding is often regarded as the process of combining, mixing, or altering ingredients to create a medication tailored to the needs of an individual patient. Virtually, Afsaneh teaches compounding through food! She demonstrates the crushing of the product through making a salad, and her students do the same, all while using pharmaceutical terminology and expressions: education and fun.


Afsaneh keeps morale high by continuing traditions that would be done in person, such as celebrating a student’s birthday through virtual parties. She finds this helps students continue to persevere through their studies.



As soon as Afsaneh stepped into CDI College, she vowed to do her best. She feels proud to hear positive feedback from various pharmacies regarding her students’ practicums, and we feel proud to be able to have such an inspiring role model as one of our instructors.


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