Maricela Cruz is a nursing major from West Chicago, IL
Hometown: West Chicago, IL
Year: Expected graduation: May 2022
Are you attending NIU on any scholarships?
Northern Academic Scholarship.
Why did you choose your field of study?
Helping others is what I enjoy. I will not only be able to work in a hospital, but also travel to developing countries to help those who do not have the proper access to necessary resources. What most inspired me to choose this field is my cousin's birth. He had to stay in the hospital longer than normal because of some complications. When I visited him, I noticed many other newborns who were in worse conditions, but they were being taken care of by nurses. That was when my desire of being a nurse awoke — seeing those helpless and fragile newborns.
How did you learn about NIU, and why did you choose to attend?
I found out about NIU during my sophomore year of high school because someone came into my English class to speak on behalf of NIU and what NIU had to offer. I remember that they talked about their nursing program and how good it was. My teachers agreed that NIU would be best for me. I was definitely sure that I wanted to attend after an Open House at NIU because I discovered the diversity and Latino Resource Center here, which made me feel more welcomed.
What is something you have experienced at NIU that you will be able to take with you into future endeavors in your field?
Being part of the Huskie Service Scholars. This program helped me to come out of my shell, be more outgoing, get to know my resources on campus, and strengthen my leadership and volunteer skills. I also joined De Mujer a Mujer, a Latina group at NIU that really gave me a boost in believing in myself and what I’m capable of.
Would you recommend NIU to others and why?
I would definitely recommend NIU because of the diversity that exists on campus.