Maya Manjarrez

September 2012
Class of 2013





I spent most of my life with my grandmother, and after accompanying her to many doctor’s appointments due to her diabetes, I decided to pursue a career in healthcare. I’ve had the opportunity to observe the interactions among healthcare professionals during my time at the doctor’s with her whether they were physicians, nurses, therapists, social workers, and even dieticians. I longed to find a path that would allow me to help those in need and to touch peoples’ lives like they did. I’ve always wanted to work in health care, but I was unsure of what role would bring the most fulfillment in my life.
It was not until my grandmother had a below the knee amputation that affirmed my decision to become a nurse. I felt helpless as my grandmother lay in a hospital bed for weeks. There was so much I wanted to do for her, yet I did not possess the necessary skills or knowledge to help her with her needs. Day after day, I watched as nurses attended and cared for my grandmother. My grandmother was undergoing a life changing experience, and their care and consideration helped her through that tough time. Their patience and compassion transpired through their teaching, nurturing, and care for her. I wanted my life to mirror their lives. Although I know I will not have my grandmother forever, knowing that I will impact the lives of people like her puts my heart at ease.

Words cannot express how thankful I am for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation NCIN scholarship. This scholarship has allowed me to pursue my career in nursing and has provided me with the skills to emerge from nursing school as a leader. It has also alleviated the stress I felt over the financial hardships that I would inevitably be facing without the scholarship. I am now more able to diligently focus on my education, without tuition being an added burden. I am proud to be a Robert Wood Johnson scholar.