Dechen Atsatsang will begin her second year at Harper College in the fall of 2023. She is working toward her associate in arts in Political Science with the goal of working in the field of International Relations and Diplomacy. Dechen has her sights set on transferring to either Georgetown, Northwestern University or University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign after completion at Harper where she will continue to pursue her bachelor’s degree. She is a Tibetan American who cites the impact of diplomacy, advocacy, and conflict resolution on international communities such as her own as fueling her passion for her future field.
She maintains a 4.0 GPA and works as a student aide at Harper while pursuing her education. She is also involved in her community through Budding Companions, an organization that connects students with senior citizens virtually, serves as a Tibetan Youth Council leader and volunteer for the Tibetan Alliance of Chicago, co-led the Palatine chapter of March for Our Lives for gun safety, and has served as a poll worker/election judge for Cook County Clerk’s office. She is a member of the Harper Honors Program, the Phi Theta Kappa chapter, and is a Distinguished Trustee Scholar.
In her scholarship essay, Dechen states, “I hope to build a solid foundation for my future career aspirations as a foreign service officer, diplomat, or human rights advocate. Through hard work, dedication, and perseverance, I am confident that I can achieve my career goals and make a meaningful difference in the world. With financial support from the HOPE Scholarship, I can pursue my educational and career aspirations with more ease and confidence.”
Elda Holbrook is a first-generation student from Venezuela who came to the U.S. in 2015 in search of asylum. She is entering the second year of Harper’s nursing program, a program that she decided to enroll in after finding passion for the medical field as a medical interpreter. She plans to transfer to a 4-year institution following graduation from Harper to earn a Bachelor of Science in nursing degree with the goal of working as an emergency room nurse and eventually specializing in wound care.
Elda is an adult student who is married and mom to a 4 year-old son. She balances family life with her nursing studies, work, and extracurricular activities. She is the Vice President of the Student Nurses Association, a member of the Harper Honors program, Phi Theta Kappa, and the Health and Pre-Med Club. For many years in her home country, she was an active member of the World Scout movement and worked to help improve her community through that organization. Earlier this summer, Elda participated in the Harper College nursing study abroad program to Cape Town, South Africa where students traveled to learn about the culture and help in recently opened clinics.
In her scholarship essay, Elda says, “After becoming a medical interpreter, I immediately started to fall in love with the medical field and helping others daily. In 5 years, I see myself as a charge nurse in the emergency room, and in 10 years I will have enough experience from the emergency room and be specialized in wound care. The HOPE Scholarship will help me with the economic load that school brings, and it will also help me to focus more on my studies. It will help me to reach success.”
Rachel Quiros is entering the second year of Harper’s nursing program this fall. She is an adult student and first-generation college student who decided to return to college to pursue her nursing degree after working in the healthcare field. She plans to transfer to a 4-year institution to earn her Bachelor of Science in Nursing after earning her degree from Harper College. Her goals are to work at a hospital as a bedside nurse and eventually work toward her nurse practitioner degree.
Rachel balances her studies with work and extracurriculars and community service. Rachel is the president of the Harper Student Nurses Association, has been involved as a volunteer with Best Buddies, Wright Way Rescue and was a team leader for the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk. She participated in the Harper College nursing program’s study abroad trip to South Africa in May and shared that working with the local children in the community during that trip had a lasting impact on her.
Rachel says in her scholarship essay, “After working in healthcare for 15 years, it dawned on me that my passion is to become a nurse. I love the nursing program here at Harper and I just love Harper College as a whole. I plan to work at a hospital as a bedside RN in the surrounding community and one day get my nurse practitioner degree. I am now working part-time to focus more on my studies and the program in general to with the support of the HOPE scholarship, I can continue to perform successfully in the RN program.”
Annie Rosas is entering her second year at Harper College in the fall of 2024 and pursuing her degree in Elementary Education. She is a returning college student, coming to Harper after working in the field of cosmetology and cites supportive teachers in her life as inspiring her path to elementary education. In addition to her degree, she plans to earn endorsements in American Sign Language (ASL) and English as a Second Language (ESL). Annie’s goals are to teach 3rd grade, earn a master’s degree and eventually become a principal, and she has a particular interest in developing curriculum at the elementary level. She plans to transfer to Roosevelt University after completing her degree at Harper College.
Annie works part-time at LUSH Schaumburg while pursuing her educational studies. She has extensive volunteer experience with missionary work through her church and has traveled to build and re-build homes in the U.S. through this program. Annie has also volunteered at National Karate for a leadership program for youth. She was a previous leader in Operation Snowball, a club focusing on anti-bullying and youth abstinence from drugs and alcohol.
Annie says in her scholarship essay, “I returned to school to pursue my dream of making
a difference in the education system for elementary school students. I felt very passionate
about this because I have always had amazing teachers who made such a difference in
my school experience. Receiving the HOPE scholarship will change my life drastically,
I will be able to pursue my dream of becoming an elementary education teacher to better
our future students.”
Julie Soliman will begin her second year at Harper College in the Fall of 2023. She immigrated with her family from Egypt to the U.S. in February of 2020. She is pursuing her degree in Biomedical Engineering and chose this area of study because she wants to help people and hopes to create medical machines for hospitals after receiving her bachelor’s degree. Julie’s long-term plan is to become a medical doctor and plans to take the MCAT and apply to medical school, a dream that was inspired by her late father’s illness.
Julie maintains a 4.0 GPA and works part-time at BMO Harris Bank to help pay for school. She is involved in a variety of clubs and activities at Harper College including Women in Science and Engineering, Phi Theta Kappa, Honors Society, Health Careers and Pre-Med Club, Math Club, German Club, and Chemistry Club. Julie also is an active volunteer through her church, helping with food pantries, as a bible study teacher for 3rd and 4th grade children, and in the church library. At Harper she also serves as a volunteer notetaker in class. As a bilingual student in Arabic and English, she has helped translate for Harper’s Adult Education online citizen class.
Julie says in her scholarship application, “I am studying Biomedical Engineering because I want to help people and being a Biomedical Engineer would give me the chance to be part of creating and developing medical machines for hospitals. Also, entering the Biomedical Engineering field helps me towards my big dream of applying to Medical School. In 10 years, I hope to become a kind and caring doctor. The HOPE scholarship will help me continue my education and move me one step closer to my dream.”
Linda J. Lang