Graduation Spotlight: Malia Capers-Cristobal

Austin Community College District (ACC) celebrates a record number of graduates at its spring 2022 commencement ceremony. More than 3,340 students are invited to participate Friday, May 13, at the HEB Center in Cedar Park.

One of those students is Malia Capers-Cristobal. She is graduating from ACC’s first cohort of the Accelerated Nursing Track program. Here is why Malia chose ACC for her education and what she’s doing next. 

Written by: Malia Capers-Cristobal

My name is Malia Capers-Cristobal. I will soon be a graduate of the Austin Community College (ACC) Associate Degree of Nursing Program. I am 1 of 19 students who will be graduating this semester from the first cohort of ACC’s Accelerated Nursing Track Program. It has been an honor to lead the way for future nursing students who chose a challenging program path and want to enter the workforce quickly. 

During my time at ACC, I not only worked hard as a nursing student but also took advantage of student life. I participated in shared governance councils, served as a student advocate on program planning committees, and joined the Student Government Association as well as Phi Theta Kappa (ACC’s honor society). These opportunities allowed me to enhance my leadership skills, improve my public speaking, and gave me a chance to give back to the college as a student.

Being a single parent and working part-time while participating in a rigorous nursing program has made this journey an eventful two years. I learned through struggle and sacrifice that being a mom has pushed me to balance expectations and life. I hope that I have set the best example of hard work and determination for my daughter. I work hard now to break this cycle of poverty and allow her to grow up knowing we did it and we came through together.

I graduate with a promising job already waiting for me:  I will be an operating room nurse. I accepted an offer at a local Level 1 trauma hospital and look forward to learning a whole new role within the unit that “raised me.” I would also like to get experience with more leadership opportunities, such as a Charge Nurse or Nurse Manager. I eventually want to develop into a position that allows me to continue to use the skills I worked hard for many years to achieve, which include analytics and process improvement. I will prepare for this goal by continuing my education; taking leadership roles in projects, councils, or committees; and seeking more learning opportunities as they are available.

I am a proud ACC Riverbat, class of Spring 2022.