Finding her place

Name: Erica Cruz
Major: Undergraduate Studies Program
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Hobart, Indiana

Family influence: Erica says her family is her greatest inspiration. “I have every intention of making them proud of my accomplishments. I chose to go to college because I wanted that experience of endless knowledge and opportunities.”

Early initiative: Erica likes a challenge. She was in Project Lead The Way (PLTW), a cooperative program between Purdue and Hobart High School that provides hands-on engineering and biomedical sciences courses. Erica says PLTW helped her discover a love for science — a major she is considering.

Options galore: Erica also found a match with the Undergraduate Studies Program. “I love the program. The advisors are wonderful and really guide you and help you figure out where you want to go.”

Purdue family: Erica is still thinking about a major, but she’s already found her niche outside of class. She joined Chi Alpha, a Christian organization that meets weekly on campus. “It feels good to know people that are there for you. It’s one of the best decisions I’ve made.”

Determined: Dedication and confidence helped Erica arrive where she is today. “Never let anyone tell you you’re not good enough. You always have to look at the positive side of things. My name might not be known worldwide, but as long as I can help an individual here or there, I will be satisfied.”

By Kelly Rogers