By the time Anaiza Cartagena earns her bachelor’s degree, she will not have paid any college tuition.

When she graduated from Chicago Bulls College Prep, she was drawn to Truman College because a friend of her older sister was a student there and loved it, and because she qualified for the Star Scholarship – meaning she wouldn’t have to pay for tuition or books as she earned her associate degree. Now, as she earns her associate degree in May of 2020, she will continue her education at Elmhurst College with a scholarship from One Million Degrees that will, once again, pay her full tuition.

While at Truman, Anaiza was part of One Million Degrees, TRIO, and started a crocheting club, which she learned from her grandma. She also took advantage of the Science Center and the Transfer Center.

As a first-generation college student, she appreciated the small class sizes and the support she received on campus – especially from her professors.

“The professors at Truman are amazing – they want to see you succeed,” she said.

For students who might be on the fence about attending a City College, she says “do it. Take advantage of everything they have to offer – there are so many people willing to help you on your way.”

At Elmhurst College, Anaiza plans to study Communications Sciences and Disorder so she can be a speech pathologist and helps children and teens who need it.

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