College is a time of discovery, and that is what Lina Gearhart aimed to do during her time at UIndy. Lina, a first-generation high school graduate and college student, chose to attend UIndy due to its small class sizes and its support system provided by staff and other students. She was drawn in by the opportunities that the nursing program offered, such as the Simulation Lab, and the idea of being “not just a number” to faculty and staff.
Her drive to help others through an altruistic major, and the desire to learn and continue her education fueled her decision to major in nursing. The program is not without its challenges, but Lina has maintained a positive attitude.
“Yes, it is challenging and makes you open your mind, but you will never hear a nurse say that nursing school was easy,” she said.
In addition to nursing, Lina is also working towards a psychology degree, a major she chose due to its compatibility with nursing and other fields.
Lina has made the most out of her time at UIndy, participating in numerous volunteer opportunities as well as getting real work experience in her career through the nursing program. During the 2022-2023 school year, she was a board member and director of Dancer Relations at UIndy Dance Marathon. This year, she plans to stick with the program with more of a focus on being a dancer. In order to reach her goal of becoming a Trauma Nurse at IU Health in the Emergency Department, Lina is currently working there as a Patient Care Intern.
“There are many things to learn, and since it is a teaching hospital, many nurses help out the students and teach them something as they go along,” she explained.
In addition to Lina’s off-campus mentors, she also finds support on campus through Anji Hines, a Pre-Clinical Nursing Academic Coach at the UIndy School of Nursing.
“Although she is not one of my advisors now, I still go and talk to her because she’s a great listener and always has the answers to my questions.”
Additionally on campus, Lina enjoys the UIndy formals and dances. Her favorite memories at UIndy come from Homecoming and the Winter Formal, perfect opportunities for her to spend time, show out, and have fun with her friends.
Lina encourages new students to reach out to anyone and everyone if they find themselves needing help. As a first-generation college student, Lina has had to discover her own path through college, and recommends the Office of Student Affairs and Stephen F. Fry Professional Edge Center for questions and advice. She also stresses the importance of speaking and making friends with many different people, and to not be afraid to lose or gain friends throughout your time at UIndy, as you will find your people.