Morristown, N.J. (February 18, 2015) – Shiann Hernandez joined the College of Saint Elizabeth's community this semester as a freshman biology major. A graduate of Mary Help of Christians School in North Haledon, her high school education gave her opportunities to excel beyond high school and get a first-hand look at her career choice.
The reason she started CSE in January is two-fold. In high school, she participated in college-level courses as well as AP classes that gave her enough credits and knowledge to start college as a second semester freshman. Shiann also did an internship with Dr. Christian Hurst of Oradell, N.J. and continues to shadow his work on her days off. He not only allows her to observe surgeries and treatments, but also is teaching her about owning a business and developing client relationships. Shiann's goal is to become a veterinarian and open her own practice someday.
"I used to wrap toilet paper around my stuffed animals when I was a young child as if I were treating them for injuries," Shiann recalls. "I think I have always known that I would go into veterinary sciences."
Concerning her choice to attend CSE, Shiann recounts her journey to this place. "I originally wanted to study out of state," says this Clifton N.J. native. "But after checking out College of Saint Elizabeth and colleges out of state, I felt this was the best fit." She was pleased with the mission of promoting women's empowerment and leadership and is happy to be in a single-sex school. "There is less drama and more focus on academics," she says.
She feels that CSE offers a true sense of community and credits the professors for pushing her toward enrolling here. "They took an interest in me as a person. They always returned my emails and made me feel as if I were very important to them." Shiann also says that any nervousness she had coming to orientation was quickly dispelled as everyone was friendly and outgoing and the activities were valuable in meeting new people. "Even though I started halfway through the year, all my fellow students have been outgoing and have been helping me to acculturate to the College," she says.
To anyone considering enrolling in CSE, Shiann advises, "You will be an individual student here, not a number. The professors want you to succeed, so they go out of their way to help. The campus is beautiful and everyone is friendly, especially to the new students."