Leticia Lozano is a big believer in following your passion.
“I’ve always been aware of three passions – I love the idea of growing and achieving, in particular a love of learning; I love the idea of having a positive impact on the world; and I love seeing one thing through 10 different sets of eyes.”
But instead of going to college like others her age, Lozano adopted her little sister and got a mortgage. She spent more than 20 years in the workforce, and her favorite job was as a recruiter of contracted pharmacists for hospitals and other health care organizations.
When her own daughter was in high school, Lozano dedicated her time to becoming a full-time student, the first person in her family to do so, and she chose College of DuPage.
“I needed to show my daughter that she can do anything,” she said. “At first I was nervous and scared. One of my first classes was biology and I did extremely well. Then the professor told me to take Anatomy and Physiology, and I did extremely well in that one, too. In fact, I loved it.”
Lozano loved it so much that she is now studying neuroscience at the University of Illinois at Chicago, earning a perfect 4.0 GPA after her first year. She is also learning more on data management.
“I love research and I love the human aspect of science,” she said. “Our body can be seen in so many ways, and there’s so much to see beyond what we can with our eyes. It feeds into all my passions. Whatever direction I go in, I will make it count.”
She is thankful to College of DuPage for providing her the education and confidence to continue striving for more. In 2015, she was name one of the two Outstanding Graduates at COD.
“I was introduced to some of the most amazing professors,” she said. “Dr. Kathleen Finan is terrific. She told me I should get my doctorate.
“When I was named Outstanding Graduate, my daughter was ecstatic for me, and I hope I made an impression on her. She told me I was ready to take on the world. And I don’t want to go through life on autopilot. I want to live. If you know what your passion is about, you can make your day a good one.”