Junior nursing major Stefany Ortega knows what it takes to run a successful campus organization. She co-founded the Cumberland FUTURO chapter, an inclusive, professional community that creates opportunities for career growth and civic engagement, in 2016. During its first year on campus, the group had 25 active members and was named the Best Student Organization for Programming and Participation by CU Student Life.
Throughout the duration of the CU chapter of FUTURO’s founding year, Ortega served as president of the organization. In the summer of 2018, Ortega was named a top FUTURO student in the state – for which she was invited to attend the Association of Latino Professionals For America Conference (ALPFA) in Las Vegas. The conference provided her the opportunity to enhance her professional and leadership skills. Today, the club continues to grow on campus, something that Ortega said she is incredibly proud of.
However, starting a campus organization that thrives is no small feat, and her advice to fellow students looking to do the same is to reach out to mentors.
“I believe that having help from advisors is important,” Ortega said. “Just accept the help, and don’t be afraid to ask for help because you do want to see it succeed and you want to see it grow.”
Ortega also spends her time on campus as a member of Gamma Beta Phi and as a Presidential Ambassador, a position that allows her to welcome new and prospective students to Cumberland.
“I believe that being here at Cumberland will really help me so much,” Ortega said. “Not just in helping me learn how to be a good nurse but also how to communicate with my peers. Cumberland gives you that opportunity to be involved in so many activities and organizations.”
Ortega’s goal is to become a nurse after graduating, a passion that she says stems from wanting to help others. To achieve this goal, Ortega plans to utilize all of the resources available to her at Cumberland.
“I love being here at Cumberland – it’s fun. I like how it’s a small university, but you feel like you’re still in a big school,” Ortega said. “You have a sense of community and family. People know you here, and it’s easy to get to know the professors because the professors want to get to know you, they want to see you succeed. They are accessible.”