Matthew Pollina didn’t know right away after high school or college that he wanted to go into nursing, but now that he’s in the profession, he’s here to say. Matthew completed the City Colleges of Chicago School of Nursing Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program at Malcolm X College in the summer of 2018.

The 32-year-old is a lifelong northwest side resident and a graduate of Loyola Academy in Wilmette. He then attended IIT to study architecture, graduating in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree.

With the economy in bad shape, however, jobs in that field weren’t readily available at that time. With that in mind, Matthew set his sights on a new career. “I wanted to enter an in-demand field that would be fulfilling and rewarding,” said Matthew. “That’s what brought me to nursing and to City Colleges.”

Matthew headed to Wright College in 2011 to start on his pre-requisites. He earned an Associate Degree in General Studies there, and at that point he was off and running. At around the same time, Matthew started volunteering at Lutheran General Hospital as a nursing care technician, a job that is very similar to a certified nursing assistant.

He started the LPN program in the fall of 2017. Now that he’s completed, he’ll continue to work at Lutheran General, which is a meaningful place to him because his dad was treated there. Through the hospital’s tuition reimbursement program, he was able to attend the LPN program for essentially no cost.

Even though he’ll be working in the field, he’s intent on gaining more education as well; next up he’ll get his RN, then a bachelor’s degree in nursing, then advanced degrees that allow him to work as a nurse practitioner and nurse anesthetist.

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