"My NIU Story"

"MyNIU Story"

Share your "MyNIU Story" here >>


Abner PalevinoName: Abner Palevino

Hometown: Tinley Park

Major: Nursing

Why did you choose to come to NIU? I chose NIU for it's academics in regards to nursing. I was happy the school accepted all my AP credit and the selling point was that they registered me for the nursing program as soon as I was accepted to the school. Also, I like the location. It's not too far and not too close from my home.

Who inspired you to go to college and why? My parents were my main inspirations.  They were able to immigrate to the United States because of their education. With that in mind, I was inspired to continue my education after high school in order to achieve the dream of succeeding.  My personal reason for being a nursing major is the opportunity of helping others.

How did you get involved on campus? My initial campus involvement was with the "OHANA!" Peer Mentor program. With the help of my mentor, I was able to meet many people within the Asian community and I was highly motivated to help people just as my mentor did with me. In just a few months I was part of the Asian American Association and Philippine Student Association.

What is your favorite part about being a Huskie? My favorite place would probably be the Holmes Student Center. I enjoy it because most of the organizations I participate in host their biggest events in the Duke Ellington and Carl Sandburg Auditorium. I like organizing large events, and I enjoy seeing all my friends and the new faces that walk into the room. Besides events, I like going to Huskies Den on Mondays to play billiards with my friends and relax.

What is it like being Asian American at NIU? Being an Asian American at NIU has given me the opportunity to represent my culture, my heritage, and my abilities. Getting involved in student organizations has increased my opportunities and sharpened my abilities in socializing and networking. These are qualities that are necessary in the job world and in life. Though I am different in regards to race, I feel like one within the Asian community, and it has only improved my pride as an Asian American.

What clubs or organizations are you involved with at NIU?

Asian American Association - Vice President External
Philippine Student Association - Public Relations
Student Nurse Organization

What are your plans after you graduate? I plan on furthering my education and obtaining my master's to become a certified nurse anesthetist.

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daihee Name: Daihee Cho

Hometown: Seoul, South Korea

Major: Accountancy

Why did you choose to come to NIU? After I decided my major as Accountancy, I have applied several universities. Among the options that I had, Northern Illinois University provides the greatest Accountancy program with very reasonable tuition rate. I visited NIU before I made my decision, and I liked the people whom I met on the campus, and I chose to come to NIU. 

Who inspired you to go to college and why? Due to high focus on education in Korea, I always knew I would go to college. I was affected by my culture in Korea.

How did you get involved on campus? I started getting involved with Douglas Hall Council. I had met great people on the campus through Douglas Hall Council, and I loved it. After that, I went out to find groups/organizations, and I joined the organizations/groups that I am interested in.

What is it like living on campus? People are very open and friendly. Since I am an international student, the first semester when I came to NIU, I was scared, to be honest. However, people were very open and kind, and it helped me a lot make friends on the campus and focus on my academic performance.

What is your favorite part about being a Huskie? Having diverse cultures. We are very open to everyone, and it makes me proud of being a Huskie.

What helped you decide on your major/future? I would like to major in Business at first. And, there is business activity that is not related with Accountancy. I want to learn everything about business, and to do so, I believe Accountancy is one of the best options.

What is it like being Asian American at NIU? Since people are open and kind to everyone, I do not think there is anything different. I am just one of students, and I do not feel any difference between me and other non-Asian students. I believe NIU is a great institution for students with diverse backgrounds, and I love it.

What clubs or organizations are you involved with at NIU?

  • Northern Light Ambassador - College of Business
  • Selected Member - Dean's Student Advisory Board, College of Business
  • President - Residence Hall Association
  • Honors House Leader - University Honors Program

I also serve on several committees

What are your plans after you graduate? I would like to become a public accountant. After working as a public accountant for many years, I would like to go back to Korea, and work as a Korean public accountant for several years. After gaining tangible business experience, I want to become an international lawyer, who solves conflicts between countries or global companies.

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woman smilingName: Cathy Cheng

Hometown: Bollingbrook

Major: Business Accounting

Why did you choose to come to NIU? Being a business major, I looked for a school with huge prestige with their business department. Also, NIU provided a very lucrative offer of $19,500 per year as an incentive.  Furthermore, DeKalb’s hometown atmosphere reeled me into loving the campus.

Who inspired you to go to college and why? My parents were greatly involved with my education and career goals. They emphasized the great necessity of an education in order to succeed. Also, I always pushed myself to be the best I can be in order to achieve my dreams.

How did you get involved on campus? There were many Public Relation officers around campus advocating the Asian community in NIU such as Abner Palevino and Justin Fuji.

What is it like living on campus? Living on campus is such a freedom. I love having to make my own decisions.

What is your favorite part about being a Huskie? I love that the university is very resourceful in helping me achieve a great education in pursuit of a career.

What is it like being Asian American at NIU? As an Asian American, NIU has made me proud to be who I am. I was welcomed very warmly and everyone is so willing to help me find my right fit here at NIU.

What clubs or organizations are you involved with at NIU? I am a general member of the Asian American Association and the Philippine Student Association. I am also a part of the 2011-2012 NIU Executive Club and Young Professionals Network Scholar. Furthermore, as part of Kappa Phi Lambda, I hold positions as Academic Chair, Community Service Chair, Cultural Chair, Fundraising Chair, and Historian.

What are your plans after you graduate? I plan to possibly get my master's degree in accountancy here at NIU. Also, I am hoping to acquire a job around the Chicago area. After settling down, I hope to have a family of my own.

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Alex NocomName: Alex Nocom

Hometown: Lake Zurich

Major: Business Marketing

Why did you choose to come to NIU? My decision to come to NIU was mainly based on the strength of the College of Business and the fact that their Professional Sales Program is one of the best learning experiences in the country. Also, NIU was an easy choice because of the lower cost of tuition and short drive from my hometown.

Who inspired you to go to college and why? My parents were my main inspiration to go to college. Both my parents were immigrants from the Philippines who dreamed of living a better life and providing for their family. They consistently reminded me of the importance of a good education and how it would make my life better down the road.

How did you get involved on campus? My initial involvement on campus was as a member of the NIU Huskie Marching Band. I showed up a week early for my first semester to attend the band camp and stayed with the organization for two years. I was also recruited by the "OHANA!" Peer mentor program my first week, this got me introduced to the Asian Student Organizations on campus.

What is it like living on campus? Living on campus is awesome! Staying in the residence halls freshmen year is the very best way to meet new people and make new friends. You get to learn a lot about yourself and how to live with others.

What is your favorite part about being a Huskie? My favorite part of being a Huskie is getting a great education from teachers and supportive staff who genuinely want to help you succeed in a career after you graduate.

What is it like being Asian American at NIU? Being Asian American at NIU has been the most eye opening and rewarding experiences of my life. After joining the Asian student organizations and participating in events, I have learned to build my confidence, teamwork, and leadership skills. I have also made many new friends and networking contacts that I plan on staying in touch with long after I graduate.

What clubs or organizations are you involved with at NIU?

  • Co-President of the NIU Philippine Student Association
  • Member of Asian American Association
  • Member of American Marketing Association
  • Member of Collegiate Sales Advisory Board
  • Member of Executive Board for Asian American Center

What are your plans after you graduate? I would like to start my career as a professional salesman for a tech company and travel the world.

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Name: Michelle Robles

Hometown: Schaumburg

Major: Nursing

Why did you choose to come to NIU? Two of the main reasons I chose to come to NIU were because they have a great nursing program and it was not too far away from home.

Who inspired you to go to college and why? My parents and my older brother are the ones who inspired me to go to college. When I was young, my parents always made it obvious that education was important. By doing this, they enabled me to always have good study habits and always try my best to get good grades. They would also tell me that education will help me in the future and that is why I decided to continue with college. My older brother has always inspired me with his determination, so I knew that after graduating high school I still wanted to go to school and better my future by getting more education.

How did you get involved on campus? Looking for a job made it easy for me to get involved on campus. I got a job at the Asian American Center during my sophomore year. I really enjoy this job because it gives the opportunity to interact with other students, organizations and most importantly prospective students.

What is it like living on campus? I lived in the dorms my first and second year in college. I really enjoyed being independent and meeting new people. As a junior, I know live in an apartment with two of my friends. This is also an awesome experience because you get to live with people who are your friends and you save some money!

What is your favorite part about being a Huskie? My favorite part about being a huskie is being part of a diverse community. I love the fact that NIU is so diverse because it gives me the opportunity to learn about other cultures and make new friends.

What is it like being Asian American at NIU? The Asian American community at NIU is great! Even though I am not Asian American, I've seen the many organizations or clubs that Asian Americans are part of here at NIU and how they influence the university.

What clubs or organizations are you involved with at NIU? During my sophomore year of college, I was involved as an NI guide. An NI guide is someone that helps new residents and current students move in to the dorms. Other than helping move people in, being an NI guide helped my communication and leadership skills. It also introduced me to some wonderful friends!

What are your plans after you graduate? After I graduate, I plan to work as a nurse either in the neonatal intensive care unit or in the emergency unit. I'm still not sure if I want to come back to school and get my next degree. I also see myself getting married and starting a family, some years after graduating.

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Name: 
Jessica Hing

Hometown: West Chicago

Major: Hospitality Administration

Why did you choose to come to NIU? I chose to come to NIU because my mom is an alumni. DeKalb is also not far from home, but far enough. I was impressed with the campus and how friendly everyone was here.

Who inspired you to go to college and why? My mom inspired me to come to NIU because she loved campus life and at the time I was a business major and NIU has a good program for business students.

How did you get involved on campus? I first became involved when I pledged for my sorority. Becoming Greek has definitely opened up my opportunities to new leadership positions.

What is it like living on campus? I love living in an apartment on campus. It's convenient and I can cook my own meals! You definitely have a lot more freedom than in the dorms.

What is your favorite part about being a Huskie? My favorite part is the unity on campus. Whether you're involved or not, we're all Huskies and proud of that. Currently, the whole school is super excited that were in the Orange Bowl and it's exciting to see all of us come together.

What is it like being Asian American at NIU? Asians don't take up a majority of the population here at NIU, but this makes us a closer community. I love the fact that everyone knows everyone. There are many organizations within our community that are so welcoming whether you are Asian or not :)

What clubs or organizations are you involved with at NIU? I am the Vice President of the Asian American Association. I am a Sister of Alpha Phi Gamma Soroity, Inc. I have held many positions within my sorority, but currently I am Social Chair, Rush/Recruitment Chair, and Entertianment Chair. I serve as the Social Chairwoman on the Exective Board of the United Greek Council. It is a multicultural Greek counsil that my sorority is apart of.

What are your plans after you graduate? After I graduate, I plan on working at a hotel somewhere in the city or becoming an Event Coordinator at a respectful company.


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Name: 
Jose Anaya

Hometown: Schaumburg

Major:  Pre-Physical Therapy

Why did you choose to come to NIU? It's close enough to home where i could go home on weekends

Who inspired you to go to college and why? I wanted to make something out of myself and my life where i wouldnt have any regrets and be well of in the real world

How did you get involved on campus? By meeting new people and wanting to be apart with the community

What is it like living on campus? It's great living in the apartments. You get your own room and have more freedom

What is your favorite part about being a Huskie? Just the spirit that comes with it along with being apart of something

What is it like being Asian American at NIU? It's wonderful. I never knew there were so many since there were only a small population at my high school

What clubs or organizations are you involved with at NIU? I am a part of a greek organization called Kappa Pi Beta I also work at the Asian American Center and help out with high school visits along with events at the AARC

What are your plans after you graduate? I plan to get into graduate school and work to get my doctorate degree



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Name:
 Andrew Quidayan

Hometown: Des Plaines

Major: Nursing

Why did you choose to come to NIU? I felt that this school's location and atmosphere were the right for for me.

Who inspired you to go to college and why? My parents have always emphasized the importance of a college education to success in life.

How did you get involved on campus? I joined the associations that some of my friends were in and signed up for some athletic events held by the recreation center.

What is it like living on campus? Living in a dorm as a freshaman is a great experience. I'm learning to be more independent in having to take care and clean up after myself. It's also a different experience because you're living with about 40 people on one floor. Dorm life is an eye-opening experience and every college student should get the chance to experience it.

What is your favorite part about being a Huskie? The atmosphere of the campus is just great. We have a lot of pride in being Huskies. We have an awesome football team and I love going to the games.

What is it like being Asian American at NIU? Being an Asian American at NIU is great. There are enough asians on campus for me to feel like I belong, while at the same time allowing me to interact with the various cultures and ethnicities we have in our university.

What clubs or organizations are you involved with at NIU?

  • Member of Philippine Student Association
  • Member of Asian American Association

What are your plans after you graduate? To work as a civilian nurse somewhere in Illinois or move to california and find a career there.

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Name: 
Abby Velasco

Hometown: Chicago

Major: Pre-Physical Therapy

Why did you choose to come to NIU? After visiting some friends that attended the university; I received a very eye opener and personal tour of the campus. They showed me where most of my class would be if I came here as a health and human science major and all the local eatery places and spots normal university tours doesnt't show like the Observatory Room on the east side of campus. At that point, walking around and taking in the scenery; I thought to my self that I could actually see my self here and surely I was right. It was one of those moments that leered you in and kept you in suspense. I think that was the breaking point for me; whether or not I could see myself going to this school; and I couldn't ask for a better school to further my education. It was one of the most beneficial decisions I've made towards my career path.

Who inspired you to go to college and why? My parents always told me that education was the most important gift they could give me; and I have them to thank for all my achievements thus far. They are my inspiration to keep reaching for my goals.

How did you get involved on campus? I attended the Involvement Fair during the beginning of the Fall semester and met a lot of clubs and people who were interested with my partnership and collaboration.

What is it like living on campus? Its definitely different; a lot more freedom but at the same time you learn more about yourself and your independence.

What is it like being Asian American at NIU? Its definitely been a networking opportunity and experience. I've met so many people who have become like family to me and who has helped me further my goals and achievements as well.

What clubs or organizations are you involved with at NIU?

  • Student Staff Assistant at the Women's Resource Center
  • Internal Vice President of the Asian American Association 
  • Ambassador of the Asian American Resource Center
  • Ohana Mentor Program
  • Member of Philippine Student Association
  • AKA (Ate, Kuya, Ading) Mentor Program
  • Member of Physical Therapy Club

What are your plans after you graduate? Hopefully a job at a hospital or a clinic as a physical therapist and an example for future Asian students to never stop reaching their goals and aspirations.