UT El Paso
El Paso, TX
Senior, Nursing Major, at UT El Paso
Job: Student Assistant at the Student Development Center
Financial Aid & Scholarships: Federal Pell Grant, Juan M. and Patricia Villalobos - Greater Texas Foundation Removing Educational Barriers Endowed Scholarship, Houston Endowment Scholarship
Rocio Orozco-Ruiz had the opportunity to attend Williams College in Massachusetts when she graduated from Del Valle High School. The offer included free tuition, but she would have had to cover all other expenses.
Orozco-Ruiz said staying in her hometown of El Paso seemed to be a more cost-conscious choice. She enrolled at The University of Texas at El Paso’s School of Nursing because it was more accessible and affordable for her and her parents.
Orozco-Ruiz is able to live at home, and her tuition at UTEP is totally covered by the Juan M. and Patricia Villalobos – Greater Texas Foundation Removing Educational Barriers Endowed Scholarship. Other expenses such as books and nursing school supplies are paid for with the Houston Endowment Honors Scholarship.
“Nursing school is expensive because I have to buy my uniform, stethoscope and other supplies in order to fulfill my class requirements,” Orozco-Ruiz said.
The scholarships have given Orozco-Ruiz a sense of security.
“When I was awarded these scholarships it was a great financial relief for my parents,” she said. “I don’t have to work while attending school, which gives me more time to focus on my classes.”
Despite having her nursing career financed, Orozco-Ruiz still budgets carefully because she plans to enroll in a master’s program after she graduates.