Student Profile: Azlyn Briana Calvillo
Last Updated on July 15, 2019 at 12:00 AM
Originally published July 15, 2019
By UC Staff
Azlyn Briana Calvillo began her academic journey outside El Paso, but The University of Texas at El Paso's respected nursing program drew the Franklin High School graduate back to the Sun City.
Since then, she has been a UTEP cheerleader, president of the Texas Nursing Students Association and is currently attending classes at the same time as her mother who is a student in the College of Business Administration.
Name: Azlyn Briana Calvillo
Major: Bachelor of Science in Nursing
What high school did you graduate from? Franklin High School, 2015
What drew you to UTEP? What truly drew me to UTEP was its nursing program, which is among the top nursing schools in the United States. I started college at The University of Texas at Arlington and was planning to pursue a bachelor of science in biology. However, after my first semester of college, my sister was getting ready to enter the nursing program at UTEP and was always excited about her nursing experience, which motivated me to switch my major to nursing. I then began to research UTEP’s nursing program and was astonished and motivated about what the nursing program had to offer. It was their mission and values of being committed to providing excellence and access to all, and taking the initiative to help build future leaders, that caught my attention. Without a doubt, I decided to transfer to UTEP. In doing so, I was able to go back home to my family. My dad and mom, who are my biggest blessings and motivators, were as excited as I was. It was a win-win for everyone!
What have you enjoyed most about studying here? What I have enjoyed the most about studying at UTEP is being able to attend college alongside my bestie, my mom. Having my mom on campus has been such a blessing, honor, and privilege. Watching how dedicated and committed she has been in all her courses has motivated me even more. Even though we are majoring in two completely different fields — she is studying business administration with a concentration in management and nursing — we are still able to meet on campus to have lunch or study together. Another aspect that I have enjoyed about UTEP is the diversity around campus. UTEP consists of such a prestigious group of professors, who provide a variety of resources and who strive to lead us in the right direction. I truly thank all my nursing professors and clinical instructors for allowing me to mature and grow as a nursing student here on campus.
In which extracurricular activities are you involved? President of UTEP's Texas Nursing Students' Association (TNSA); National Honor Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS); UTEP cheerleader during fall 2016
What’s your favorite place to relax or study on campus? UTEP is such a beautiful campus inside and out. However, my favorite place to relax on campus is the study rooms in the Health Sciences and Nursing Building. They have such a beautiful view of the campus. It’s always quiet, which allows me to sit down, relax or study. I also love the grass area around the building. I enjoy relaxing around all the trees and being able to clear my mind from all my studying. It’s extremely beautiful in the mornings when the sun is just rising. Hearing the birds chirp, and seeing all the green trees and flowers every morning is breathtaking. Those are the perks of having early morning classes!
What has been your favorite class so far, and why? Anything nursing! However, my most favorite classes thus far have been Adult Health Nursing I and II. Adult Health Nursing allowed me to put my nursing skills and critical thinking into practice. I was able to obtain so much information from this course, and it was then that I truly knew I had chosen the right profession. Adult Health Nursing II consisted of critical care and going to the intensive care units (ICU) and emergency department. I absolutely fell in love with the ICU even more. For me, critical care has always drawn my attention, especially the brain and cardiac systems. I feel that this course truly prepared and strengthened me as a nursing student. I truly thank Mrs. Acosta and Dr. Tracey for allowing me to grow and learn substantially from these courses.
Tell us about a hands-on learning experience you’ve had at UTEP? I have been able to obtain multiple hands-on learning experiences here at UTEP. In the School of Nursing, we have the Center for Simulation, also known as Sim Lab. Sim Lab provides such a unique learning environment. Each semester we have what we call, Simulated Hospital Day, in which we have real-life scenarios, and play the role of the nurse or patient. Not only do we get to practice our nursing skills and become familiar with medical technology and medications, but we also practice communicating with other health care professionals as well. Students in the physical therapy, occupational therapy and even local physicians, such as Dr. Reyna, come and visit making it seem as if we are in an actual hospital. Sim Lab has allowed me to do hands-on skills such as starting an IV, administering medications, and caring for “patients”, all of which have helped me become more comfortable in the hospital setting.
I have also attained hands-on learning experiences through TNSA (Texas Nursing Students Association). TNSA has allowed me to work alongside local nurses, nurse practitioners and physicians in health screenings, research, patient education, and giving back to our community. Through events such as volunteering at the farmer’s market, I have become more familiar with our community, and have conducted blood-pressure screenings while offering patient education in regards to lowering or maintaining a healthy blood pressure.
Tell us about undergraduate research opportunities you’ve taken advantage of at UTEP? I have been privileged enough to work alongside Dr. Solis, who conducts various research projects amongst El Paso’s population, ranging from children to adults. I have also been a part of the Nurse Engagement and Wellness Study (NEWS Study) here on campus.
What are your career aspirations? My goal and dream is to become a pediatric nurse and work in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) in Dallas/Fort Worth. Furthermore, I plan to continue my education, and obtain a Master of Science in Nursing degree in the Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (PACNP) concentration. To be able to care and advocate for such a young population is an area I hope to succeed in.
What’s your favorite UTEP event, and why? My favorite UTEP events are Project Move and the 21st Century Scholar Program. I admire how involved UTEP is within the El Paso region, and Project Move proves just that. This past spring of 2019, I was privileged enough to participate in Project Move, as part of NSLS. Through this event, my group and I were able to assist a local resident in re-structuring and painting his front and back porches. Being able to witness his reaction after we had finished everything was priceless. I was also privileged enough to be nominated for the 21st Century Scholar program this past spring. This event allowed me to find my own strengths and in turn utilize them into becoming a better leader. I benefitted from this event in numerous ways. This event truly made me a better leader within TNSA and as individual.
What advice would you give to an incoming UTEP student? You’re going to love it! There are just so many opportunities and areas for growth here at UTEP. I would highly recommend getting involved as well! I truly believe that the only way to make your college memories last, and truly get that college experience, is by being involved. And especially to all my future nursing students I say get involved with TNSA! You won’t regret it! My advice for you all is also to not stress out. Spend time with your family and loved ones, go for a run, watch the sunset, go to our sports events, and enjoy your time as a college student. Having time-management is also very important. Time-management has helped me tremendously, especially with managing school studies, family-time, being involved within my organizations, and having time to relax. I think of our college years as the growing phase, where you are constantly growing as an individual and student, learning not only about yourself but about the different cultures present around El Paso. Get to know your gifts and talents, and use them wisely. If you find yourself stuck like me realizing that what you thought you wanted to become all your life is not what you want to do anymore, it’s okay to change. You might just realize that your true passion lies in an area you never thought you would ever do. Lastly, my advice for our future Miners is to go for it! No matter how crazy your dreams or aspirations may sound, go for it. You never really know how capable and competent you are in something until you try.
What is your best UTEP memory so far? Out of the many memories I have made here on campus my favorite memory was being able to cheer at all our sports events. I remember getting all the adrenaline from seeing our Miner fans out in the stands, and seeing all the athletes run out with such enthusiasm and determination. I remember cheering in our Sun Bowl Stadium, and seeing all the spotlights and hearing our marching band start off the show. Being able to cheer for a NCAA Division 1-A University, with such talented athletes, was a huge honor. I enjoyed every part of being a UTEP cheerleader, and being able to cheer alongside my amazingly talented team.
My other all-time favorite memory has to be getting accepted into the nursing program. I remember getting an email and screaming down the hall to my parents saying, “I’M GOING TO BE A NURSE!” Seeing my parents’ reaction was everything, and they are the reasons why I continue to push myself every single day.
And last but not least, becoming President of TNSA, and being able to work alongside such an incredible group of talented students, amazing officers and advisor, Mrs. Copeland. I still remember entering Mrs. Copeland’s office to go over my pharmacology exams and making it a goal to be a part of TNSA one day. And now all of that has become a reality. Being able to represent TNSA as president has been such a reward in itself, and has allowed me to make endless memories from being able to meet other nursing students within our organization to meeting new people within our community. I have made countless friendships within TNSA, and I am truly thankful and blessed to be a part of such a prestigious organization that provides such a welcoming and learning environment for all our nursing students and alumni.