Meet Isolina Llaguno, a senior currently pursuing her Bachelor’s in Social Work. Isolina is Cuban American and credits growing up between two cultures for shaping her into who she is today and how she sees and understands the world. She is proud to identify as a Latinx social worker because she is able to speak to and interact with a more diverse group of people and better understand individuals who come from different backgrounds and cultures. For Isolina, being a Latinx social worker is more than just a career. It is also a statement. “It’s for our parents who immigrated to this country to give us a better chance at life. It is for those out in the community who need help but cannot properly receive it because of language or cultural barriers. It is also for those who don’t have a voice but demand change within our government systems.”
Get to know Isolina and more about why she chose to study social work at the University and the impact she plans to make in her career.
Q: What inspired you to choose your major?
A: It started as my drive to help others. However, as I have progressed through the last three years I would say that my response has changed. Instead, I was inspired to choose social work because I found a career where I can be an advocate for others and support them through challenging times in their lives. Everyone does better when they have someone supporting them from the sidelines, and I am so glad that I am working towards a career in which I can be that person.
Q: What made you choose to study at the University of Nevada, Reno?
A: I chose to study at the University of Nevada, Reno because of the variety of major’s that they have to offer. When I first started college, I had no idea what I wanted to do, however, I knew that by studying at UNR I would have the opportunity to explore a variety of career paths before choosing the one that was right for me.
Q: What is your favorite spot on campus?
A: My favorite spot on campus would have to be the knowledge center. I just really like the vibes in there.
Q: What does being a member of the Wolf Pack mean to you?
A: Being a member of the Wolf Pack means being united with other students. Just like wolves travel in a pack, all of us college students do the same. We are all going through the motions of working towards a career in order to start the next chapter of our lives and achieve the goals that we all have set for ourselves.
Q: What does it mean to you to be a Hispanic/Latinx student?
A: Being a Hispanic student is such a huge part of my identity. It is a part of what drives me every day to continue my education and achieve all of the goals that I want to achieve. My family immigrated from Cuba in order to give my sibling and me the opportunities to have a better life. For that reason, being a Hispanic student has so much more meaning to me. It is a statement, showing that all the struggles that my parents went through upon arriving in this country were worth it.
Q: What advice would you give to prospective students? Fellow Hispanic/Latinx students?
A: The advice that I would give to prospective students and other Hispanic/Latinx students would be to never give up. It is going to get difficult sometimes and giving up will definitely seem like the easier thing to do. These hard times won’t last though, and I highly encourage reaching out for help when you need it.
Q: What's a fun fact about you that others might not know?
A: A fun fact about me that others might not know is that I love fashion and styling clothes. In a different life, I probably would have acted on my aspirations to be a stylist or go to fashion school instead.