“Do what makes you happy, be with who makes you smile, laugh as much as you breathe, love as long as you live" is Monica Ibarra’s life motto.
Monica is a third year nursing student at Creighton University. Monica struggled with Lupus throughout high school, yet she is still an extremely optimistic person. “Life is so beautiful and full of wonders, but it can be taken away in an instant. I learned that we must live life with passion and make the most of it every day.”
Inspired by firsthand experiences in the hospital, Monica is pursuing a career in nursing. Her goals in college are trying new things, meeting new people, and gaining more cultural experiences. Her motivation to achieve great things in college is drawn from her parents.
During her high school years, dealing with the anti- immune disorder lupus caused her many setbacks, but she stayed dedicated to her work and stayed focused with her goals.
In the beginning Monica frequently missed school but that did not stop her from excelling. “I would find ways to catch up, like staying after school and getting tutoring from teachers. My parents have always taught me to achieve and work hard for what I want.” Having Lupus has changed her life physically and mentally. “Lupus has changed my view on life— I appreciate things more.”
Physically, Lupus changed the way Monica’s body functions. “Since I was diagnosed, I have gained 80lbs, but I am slowly losing them.” Dr. Sanchez is one of her heroes. This wonderful man gave her medical attention and saved her life when Monica did not have health coverage and other doctors would not see her.
Her greatest accomplishment yet has been receiving the Gates Millennium Scholarship. It took hard work, dedication, and much outside help. Monica is proud to be the only Latina in Omaha to receive this scholarship, but more importantly, she feels that she learned a lot about herself through the process. The essay questions especially made Monica look inside herself. She discovered how much of a leader she is.