2021 Dream Achiever graduates

We are so proud of our recent graduates!

Alex Gomez, Associates RN Degree, Austin Community College

After graduation, I will be working in the cardiac unit at St. David’s! I plan to get my bachelors’ degree and possibly transfer to the emergency unit. In addition to my degree, I’m most proud of the fact that I didn’t have to repeat a semester. Classes are so demanding, and trying to juggle school on top of taking care of my family was challenging for me. My mentor, Adriana, was awesome, and I enjoyed talking to her. It was nice to know she could relate to my struggles during nursing school and in the workplace. Her experiences helped calm my nerves about starting as a new nurse, and I’m grateful for having her as part of my support team. Thank you, Adriana! Honestly, this whole school journey helped shape me in a way that I now see that anything is possible. It showed me that I never want to stop learning. I’ve met so many people along the way and have experienced life-changing things. I’m excited about what the future holds.

Innocente Baharanyi, Associates RN degree, Austin Community College

After graduation, I will be working at Dell Seton Medical Center at UT in the acute care and trauma unit. I am most proud that I was able to earn my degree despite challenges and setbacks. I continued to reach out and find resources I needed to pursue my goals. My mentor, Wanda, has been very supportive in every way. She went above and beyond to make sure I stayed focused. Anytime I called and texted, Wanda was always available to help in any way she could--She even babysat for me on more than one occasion! This semester was particularly challenging, and having Wanda as my mentor and support person helped me survive during a very tough time. Wanda is the kind of person and nurse I want to be--She is my hero. My journey has been challenging, but I have grown and learned so much. I have been very fortunate to work with Capital IDEA and DCTF to achieve my goals. Honestly, I wouldn't have been able to get this far on my own. I am also grateful for friends, my church, and particularly my daughter, who has kept my spirit up and has encouraged me.

Lizzet Loredo, Associates RN degree, Austin Community College

After graduation, I will be working at Seton Main in the mother and baby unit! In addition to earning my degree, I’m most proud of the fact that despite having no prior medical experience and always feeling like everyone was smarter than me in my class, I’m graduating with the opportunity to work in my dream job. My mentor, Jacque, always reminded me to take time for myself and be proud of myself. I want to thank her for always being there to listen to me and guide me. I was so lucky to have Jacque as my mentor. I want to thank God for being by my side the whole way through. To my family for always supporting me and believing in me. I hope to one day be an inspiration to my kids and show them that whatever it is you want to do, with hard work, it can be achieved! Thank you to DCTF and Capital IDEA for helping make my dream come true!

Esther Iwuchukwu, Associates RN degree, Austin Community College

After graduation, I plan to sit for and pass the NCLEX and begin working as a professional nurse in the residency program I applied to and was hired. I want to continue my journey towards attaining a BSN degree, among others. In addition to my degree, I would say that I am most proud of who I am and am becoming. This would not have happened without God's providence, the support I received from DCTF, among others, the nature of the training I underwent, and my experiences as a student nurse. The people I encountered along the way have all contributed to the better person I have become. My mentor, Becky Cook, is an amazing woman. She was very supportive, has a big heart, and was encouraging. I am grateful to her. I want to say thank you to all who supported me. The journey was not easy, and I was aware of that. Some days were harder than others, but they made me stronger and better. I have learned to give in to the process and not run away from anything that will do me good, help me become better, and never give up.

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