A Tale of Caring
Judy Cabael had more to worry about in high school than finding the right Prom dress – and that experience molded who she’s become.
“All I could do was take things day by day,” explains Judy Cabael, whose mother had heart surgery and battled breast cancer during Cabael’s junior and senior years of high school. An honors student and cheerleader, she kept up her spirits and grades, and even worked part-time to help pay for mounting medical expenses. Watching her mother’s struggle to regain her health, her interest in both science and caring for others began to emerge. “I took several science classes my last year, and joined the school’s SkillsUSA medical terminology team that won first place in the state and seventh in the national competition,” says Cabael. “By time I graduated, I knew I wanted to become a nurse.”
“Enrolling in Oakton’s B.N.A.T. program was the best decision I’ve made yet,” she attests. “The Wentcher Scholarship I received makes my first two years of college extremely affordable, and being part of the Honors Program challenges me academically.”
Cabael, who hopes to transfer to the University of Illinois’ nursing program and specialize in pediatric care, happily reports that her mother is on the road to recovery. “The past few years have been difficult, but I’ve emerged a more mature and compassionate person,” she explains. “And I’ve got my mother beside me. In the end, that’s all that matters.”