Wendy Rivera

Wendy R

“I am passionate about helping others. I’ve always been someone who’s looked after others and wanted to help people, rather than just helping myself. The good feeling of serving, helping and making a difference in their life gives me a life meaning and sense of accomplishment and is very rewarding.”


What was your program of study at Riverland? When did you attend?

  • Associate of Arts Degree/Liberal Arts & Sciences Summer 2015-Spring 2017. Graduated May 2017.
  • LPN Program Fall 2017-Spring 2018. Graduated May 2018 with my Diploma in Practical Nursing.
  • MANE Nursing Program Fall 2018-Fall 2019. Graduated Dec 2019 with my Associate of Science Degree in Nursing
  • I also attended WINONA STATE UNIVERSITY which is partnered with Riverland and graduated with my Bachelor of Science in May 2022.

What is your career now?

I’m working at Thorne Crest Senior Living in Albert Lea, MN. My goal is to continue with my education and become an Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AGACNP) DNP.

In ways do you think Riverland contributed to your life?

The Nursing program at Riverland gave me the building blocks of nursing knowledge. The nursing program provided me with plenty of hands-on practice for technical skills like starting IVs, administrating medications, and assessment techniques. The program turned me into a capable nurse. Riverland gave me all the tools and leadership skills to prepare me. I met incredible instructors and classmates. The memories we created from getting together to study, attending clinicals and the

happiness of graduating are something I will always remember. THE STRUGGLE IS REAL IN NURSING SCHOOL but the satisfaction of completing it feels amazing.

How did receiving Riverland Community College Foundation Scholarships impact you?

I am a mother of two and while attending school I managed to continue to work full time to provide for my family, receiving scholarships helped me to pay for my college expenses without having to work overtime and avoid requesting loans. I was able to spend more time with my family and focus on studying and give my best as return to all of those who were kind in donating their money so students like me could receive an education without creating a financial burden.

What contribution or achievement are you most proud of?

I am proud to be a first-generation student and able to be a role model to others around me.

What would you tell others who may be considering Riverland for their education?

I would recommend Riverland because the staff is great and very involved in helping students succeed. It’s easy to get one-on-one teacher time if needed. The class size is small, and the instructors are great and easy to work with. My advice to current students is to always give it your best and try to figure out how to do an even better job.