As a first-generation Latina to attend college, moving from Philadelphia and away from my home and family to come to IUP was a huge decision. I didn’t know if I’d fit in, or if I’d make friends.
Today, I’m a junior at IUP, majoring in psychology with a minor in Spanish. IUP provides all the support I need to meet my number one goal: to excel academically – and IUP quickly became a “home away from home.”
When I first got to IUP, I made friends quickly and found so many
organizations that welcomed me – it’s almost impossible at IUP not to find some group or club that is right for you. I’m proud to say that I’ve become a student-leader through these organizations, and as a student-leader, I work closely with advisors that not only help me lead these organizations, but also help me achieve my personal goals and guide me down the right path academically and personally. Leadership and membership in these organizations have also helped me to develop and strengthen my leadership skills that will help me in my career.
Not only do I have groups such as Ritmo Latino, where I can express my culture through dance, but there are many other Hispanic organizations and activities that help me connect with my home and family traditions. As a member of the
Latino Student Organization (LaSO), I have been able to attend conferences, meet new people, and network with students, faculty and alumni.
I am so thankful for the help that I have received from the faculty and the friends I have made along the way. My advice to anyone who is thinking about IUP: Do it! There are people and organizations here to support you in every way possible.