Marisol Carreon '18
Majors in Biology and Spanish
What made you choose Lake Forest College?
I chose Lake Forest College because I liked the fact that I would be able to get my Bachelor’s degree while being close to home. Saving money was a deciding factor for me, so I would save money on housing while living at home. Lake Forest College also helped get grants for me so that I could afford tuition. The small class sizes appealed to me. I liked that some courses incorporated field trips to the city museums, shows, and symposiums.
How did a liberal arts education make a difference for you?
I met students pursuing different majors from communications, to psychology, to international relations. It helped broaden my perspectives so that I did not only learn biology major-related information. The central part of healthcare is the ability to work in interprofessional teams to provide the best care for the patients. The diversity of classes offered at Lake Forest College introduced the concept of interprofessionalism to me and made me pursue my second major in Spanish. As a result, I have experienced the perfect balance between science and humanitarian education.
What experiences outside of the classroom do you think helped prepare you for Master of Science in Nursing school?
While pursuing my major in Spanish, one of my classmates informed me about the interpreter opportunity at Rosalind Franklin University Interprofessional Community Clinic (ICC). It was a volunteer position that required a proficiency exam to test my Medical Spanish knowledge to enable me to work with real patients in the community that were underserved and uninsured. I was accepted and volunteered for 2 years while in undergrad. That influenced my decision to go into nursing and pursue my MSN at the DePaul School of Nursing at Rosalind Franklin campus in North Chicago, IL. This would allow me to continue to interpret at ICC and help the Latino community.
While at DePaul, I became the only student in my class to be on the Executive Board for the ICC clinic and a year on the Multicultural Affairs Board. I continued to serve the community and learned about how the clinic operates. I also had an opportunity to interact with patients and provide them with the resources so that they can have access to healthcare. I helped raise money for the ICC clinic so that the services could continue to be free for the patients.
How did your time at Lake Forest help you prepare to apply to MSN school programs?
My time at Lake Forest College helped me become a well-rounded individual which prepared me to apply to my MSN program. I had experience in science and research, and I participated in an internship at an urgent care clinic my senior year where I practiced my medical Spanish to become competent in translating. I was also able to incorporate my sociology, psychology, and philosophy courses into my professional identity when taking care of patients from different backgrounds. I was also able to establish a relationship with Rosalind Franklin University since I interpreted at the ICC clinic for 2 years and participated as an interpreter in a psychology research study.
What do you think of the new Health Professions Program between Lake Forest College and Rosalind Franklin University? What do you think of the future 3-2 BA-MSN program being developed between Lake Forest College and ROSALIND FRANKLIN UNIVERSITY?
I think this is a great opportunity for students that would like to become leaders in the healthcare field and further their education with an MSN. I would have jumped on the opportunity in a heartbeat so that I could start working in my field and become a young leader. I think that this will help students start in a diverse and high-demand field, especially during times of a global pandemic. Students coming from a liberal arts college are vital in bringing a humanitarian perspective along with their critical thinking skills.
What skills and experiences at Lake Forest College do you believe will help you be successful?
The skills acquired while at Lake Forest College that helped me become successful are critical thinking, time management, organization, public speaking, and team collaboration. I also held leadership positions at Latinos Unidos and International Student Organizations on campus that helped me develop the humanitarian side of interacting with patients from different backgrounds. I have also learned from my classes in psychology, sociology, philosophy, and Spanish about bringing different perspectives and multiple solutions to a problem. Being adaptable and learning to multitask has helped me greatly after graduation when trying to manage a social life, family, two jobs, and working on my master's in nursing. Overall, I feel that I have learned to be a well-rounded individual.
What advice would you give a high school student looking to pursue pre-health and is considering Lake Forest College?
Apart from my reasons to attend Lake Forest College like financial aid and being close to home, I would encourage high school students to consider a liberal arts college that focuses on a well-rounded education. I've always had a passion for science, but I also enjoyed being creative and learning about the world. Lake Forest College helped me find my passion for nursing by offering classes in biology, neuroscience, psychology, languages, philosophy, and art.
Lake Forest College helped me be ahead in my graduate-level classes because of the research and symposiums I completed as an undergrad. Graduate school classmates would come to me for guidance if we had to do a research paper or a presentation since I had plenty of experience as an undergrad. I've been able to approach patient care as a culturally competent individual and as a humanitarian with empathy and have helped patients get the resources that they need to access healthcare for themselves and their families. Healthcare is in great need of young leaders that are well-rounded individuals and I believe Lake Forest College played an integral role in helping me achieve my professional identity.