Nursing student receives scholarship

Alba Ortega '13
Alba Ortega '13 (center) with her parents, Esperanza Cruz and Jacinto Ortega, at the awards ceremony

Jan. 7, 2013 - Alba Ortega '13, a student in the School of Nursing, received an award and scholarship from the National Hispanic Health Foundation (NHHF), affiliated with the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, New York University.

The national scholarship program rewards Hispanic students in health professional programs for their exceptional academic performance, leadership and commitment to serving the Hispanic community.

"As a nurse, I want to help patients in the emergency room who cannot speak English," says Ortega, who is bilingual in English and Spanish and whose parents emigrated from Mexico in 1986. "I want to make their stay more comfortable, provide the best care they can have and educate them on their illness in a meaningful way."

According to the NHHF, Hispanics are the largest ethnic group in the United States, but are underrepresented as health professionals. The NHHF is working to increase the number of Hispanic health professionals who have the cultural and linguistic skills to deliver quality care for the growing Hispanic population.

Ten students, including Ortega, received their scholarships at an awards ceremony in New York City in November 2012.

"To me, winning this scholarship means never giving up or losing hope, and staying true to who you are even if the odds are against you," says Ortega.