If not for the Hudson & Holland Scholars Program, I would not be where I am this very day.
I was one of seven children, and my parents simply could not afford to pay any of my college expenses. Hudson & Holland has enabled me to attend college, and it is an honor to be in this program.
Hudson & Holland has been more to me than just a scholarship program — it’s my home away from home, my IU family. HHSP has made a campus of almost 40,000 undergraduate students feel small and close, like a family. There is always someone there to answer questions, advisors to provide direction, fellow scholars who have become my best friends, shoulders to lean on when I’m feeling weak, celebrations after every accomplishment, and people who have my back and best interests at heart.
Currently, I am weeks away from graduating from IU’s School of Nursing.
In 2010, I began my first year at IU majoring in pre-nursing with the plan to apply to the nursing school that spring, once I met my prerequisites. With a competitive GPA near a 4.0, I found out that spring that I was not accepted. IU Bloomington’s School of Nursing accepts 60 students per year from approximately 300 applicants.
I spoke with my HHSP advisor, my family, and my best friends (who I met in HHSP). They encouraged me to stay persistent and reapply the next year, so I did just that — and was accepted. Now, as a fifth-year senior, my goal in life to become a registered nurse is a month away because I chose not to give up on a dream and my HHSP family believed in me!
In 2012, I even went on a weeklong medical brigade trip to Guatemala through IU’s Timmy Global Health, and Hudson & Holland helped fund the trip.
This was a spring break trip with medical volunteers (pharmacists, nurses, doctors) and 20 selected IU students who, throughout the year, raised money and gathered various supplies to help those less fortunate in Guatemala. While there, we worked as a traveling clinic offering medical help to the men, women and children, giving medications, vitamins and providing treatments.
With six years of Spanish in the classroom setting, I was able to serve as a rudimentary translator while also taking blood pressures, temperatures, weight and getting a background and history of each patient before they saw the doctor. I plan on returning yearly once I become a registered nurse.
A mother who I helped offered me her gold necklace for my services, and to this day, I have never taken it off my neck. I gave her money for the necklace even though she insisted it was a present for me. Today, it serves as a reminder of the people of Guatemala and a promise to return.
The doctors and nurses who were on the trip have become mentors to me along my journey of nursing. Hudson & Holland made all of this possible for me.
I will be forever grateful for what Hudson & Holland did for my life as well as for my family. It isn’t just a four-year program — it is a lifetime connection.