Featured Adult Learner: Karina Alcantara

Karina Alcantara is junior psychology major with a minor in Spanish. Her hometown is Elburn, Ill., and she has commuted to NIU since her freshman year. She chose psychology as a major because there is a disparity in the field. Alcantara stated that Latinxs make up one percent of field and there is a need for more research on Latinx populations. Alcantara likes NIU because there are always people to help you and there is a place you belong. Her favorite spaces are the commuter lounge of the MPTSS office and the Latino Center. She has had good experiences with NIU professors. When Alcantara had a concern or question, her professors have been approachable and understanding.

Her tips to new students are to take the time to explore the campus and be open to trying new things. As a commuter, she has a limited time to explore between commuting and classwork. However, she encourages you to take the time to explore. Also, become friends with other commuters if you’re a commuter too! Finally, one of the best opportunities she has had is the opportunity to research with a professor. Alcantara is taking a three-credit course from her major where she assists with research and spends nine hours a week in the lab. The course is flexible and a good opportunity for students. Alcantara’s expected graduation date is May 2019. After she graduates from NIU, she plans to pursue a master’s degree in clinical psychology and serve the Latinx population.

Fun Fact: Karina has had plastic surgery twice for medical purposes.

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