Luz Aquino Ruiz is a senior in the health sciences program from Millbrook Central School District.

Why did you choose to attend the CTI health sciences program?

I've always had an interest in the medical field. I've always wanted to help. My dad was someone that always loved helping the elderly and young people, so I wanted to continue that from him. I love being around people and helping them as much as I can. 

What have you learned so far? 

I've learned a lot throughout the year. Making a proper bed — doing the corners is way different from how I do it. At clinical, with the elderly, I started off pretty nervous. Going in there I was really scared to knock and interfere with their privacy. Throughout this time, I've gotten much more comfortable. We feed them, clean them up, get them ready, shower them, shave them.

I've learned that you've got to be gentle with people. You always have to be respectful to them in everything that you do. I've learned that the little things matter. Even if you just compliment what they're wearing. I've learned that being kind doesn't really take much.

If you want to be in this program, you really have to have a big heart and a strong stomach.  

What is your favorite part of the program? 

I love interacting with everyone. I feel like I've gotten more social being with the elderly. I really love being around them. I love trying to make them as happy as possible, and they also adore that too. They love that. I also love my teachers. I'm really grateful for them and I have a great bond with everyone here.

What are your aspirations or plans after you complete the program? 

First, I wanted to do psychology, and then after a few months of being here, I decided I wanted to be an ultrasound tech — so I had different phases and interests, and I didn't know what I was going to do until finally this year. My teacher, Miss Novak, was a nurse in the Army. That's what I want to do now and be a nurse in the Navy. Now that I've joined the Navy, I'm going to do my job first, which is retail specialist, and then I'm going to apply to college and study to be a nurse through the Navy.