Kiersten Natzic: Faculty Role-Models Help Students Succeed

March 13, 2019 - 3 minute read


Reflections on faith, point of view, and lending a helping hand.

Kiersten Natzic

A 2019 Healthcare Management student, graduating in the spring, Kiersten has worked as a Freshman Peer Advising Leader (PAL) for the Office of First-Year Experience Programs & Initiatives.

What led you to Concordia University Irvine?

My sister went to Concordia and was a senior when I was a freshman. I was really unsure about whether I wanted to go out of state or stay near home, but I knew I wanted to go to a faith-based institution. I had visited a number of schools when my sister was going off to college and even more when it was my turn to decide where I wanted to go, but I only felt truly at home when I visited Concordia.

What influenced the choice of your major?

I had always known I wanted to go into the healthcare field, but did not know in what capacity. Originally, I wanted to go into nursing, but when I took a business class, I decided I wanted to go into more of the management/administrative side. This major has been a perfect fit and has really helped me figure out what I want to do in my future career.

Which faculty or staff member do you most admire?

The faculty member I admire the most is Dr. Sinardi. She unexpectedly inherited the three Healthcare programs and has given 110% ever since. She has put so much effort into growing the programs as well and does not give up when things get difficult. Dr. Sinardi is also one of the most kind and loving people I know. From the moment I first had her as my professor, I could tell that she wanted to do everything in her power to help her students succeed.

Where have you experienced growth as a student?

I participated in the Peer Advising Leader (PAL) program through the Office of First Year Experience my sophomore through senior years. I had always been an introverted and quiet person, so joining this group was a big step out of my comfort zone. While this leadership group typically focuses on how to make the transition into college easier for the new students each year, it really helped me grow more confident and comfortable around groups of people.

What sticks with you from Enduring Questions & Ideas?

I think what sticks with me from Enduring Questions & Ideas is the ability to look at different subjects from different points of view and that there are connections between subjects that I originally thought were complete opposite from each other. The different courses caused me to think outside of the box and look at things from other perspectives.

What is one thing you have most valued about your time at CUI?

One thing I have most valued about my time at Concordia is the amount of time that faculty and staff dedicate to the students. Every faculty and staff member I have ever encountered has done all they could to help me succeed.

What is your favorite Concordia tradition?

My favorite Concordia tradition is the Concordia Christmas Concerts. I played viola in the Concordia Sinfonietta my freshman through junior years. Every year, we would have the opportunity to be one of the orchestras participating in the concerts. I loved this tradition because it created a sense of community between all of the different music ensembles on campus and allowed us to celebrate the holiday season with fellow students, faculty, family, and community members.

Who are your heroes in real life?

My heroes in real life are my parents. They work and put so much effort into everything they do. They never give up on something they put their minds to and always lend a helping hand where they see a need.

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