UTEP Alumna Returns to Campus to Join Student Health and Wellness Center
From a very young age, UTEP alumna Cheyenne Rincones knew that she wanted to go into a field where she could “make a real difference in people’s lives.”
Following her graduation from the UTEP Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program in 2004, Rincones set forward in achieving her dream of serving her community, first through RN positions with University Medical Center and the El Paso Psychiatric Center in which she served in combined leadership and direct clinical care. She then served as a clinic director and medical director in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at Texas Tech Health Sciences Center after pursuing and completing her master’s degree. She returned to UTEP this fall to begin her position as the Student Health and Wellness Center (SHWC)’s nurse practitioner (NP) and will continue to serve as the president of the El Paso Advanced Practice Nurses’ Association.
Rincones’s professional path was built on her passion for nursing and dedication to education, which eventually led her to pursue and complete both a Master of Science in Nursing degree and a Doctor of Nursing Practice in Executive Leadership. She declares the field lends itself to continued professional development.
“Nursing allows for many opportunities and advancements by branching into very specialized areas and many avenues that can be taken when pursuing higher education,” she said. “From direct patient care to project management, research, health promotion and education to leadership, nursing is a profession that allows all these opportunities.”
In her current position at the SHWC, Rincones will draw upon her background in prevention in primary care settings and her additional training as a certified health coach to provide exceptional care. As a native, bilingual El Pasoan, she also has an intuitive understanding of the community’s needs, many of which mirror those of the UTEP student population. Rincones aims to broaden the scope of practice and services at the SHWC to include coping strategies for stress management, as well as healthy eating and exercise habits. She defines that for many students “the SHWC is their only access to health care while they are here,” adding, “I want to ensure the students’ needs are taken care of efficiently and safely, and that they have a great experience.”
Being back on the UTEP campus as a working professional instead of as a student immediately hit home for Rincones, reminding her of her own experience as a working student putting herself through school.
“I am a 2004 BSN graduate. To have been in the students’ place 20-plus years ago and now to be able to serve the population in this role was nostalgic,” she said. “It is about a sense of giving back to your roots. Once a Miner, always a Miner.”
To learn more about the services of the Student Health and Wellness Center, please visit: www.utep.edu/chs/shc/.