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AURORA CRUZ-TORRES

I received my bachelor’s degree in Human Biology from the University of Puerto Rico. When I started college I was sure that I wanted to go to medical school and become a pediatrician which is why the Human Biology major seemed perfect for me. During the summer after my sophomore year, I got the opportunity to participate in a summer research opportunity program at the University of Illinois. That experience was eye opening and I decided to change my career goals. Instead of going to medical school, I decided to apply to the MCB PhD program and pursue neuroscience research. I got accepted into the program and during the first couple of years I really enjoyed my classes and doing research in the laboratory. But after third year, I started being a teaching assistant as well. Being a teaching assistant made me realize that my passion really was working with students and helping them achieve their goals. I left the MCB program with a master’s degree and went on to pursue my passion of working with college students. It took me a few years after graduating college to realize what my true career goal was and I feel lucky that I was able to achieve it by becoming an academic advisor. Nowadays, besides being an MCB academic advisor, I am also serving as an academic advisor for people in prison through the Education Justice Project and I am doing a Masters in Education with a concentration in Diversity and Equity. Make sure to take advantage of all the opportunities available to you, since you never know what doors might open and how they will might change your career path.