Graduation year: 2017
Majors: Anthropology and political science
Minors: Latin American studies and sociology
Activities: Latinx Unidos, Augustana Symphonic Band, Sigma Alpha Iota music fraternity, Phi Beta Kappa
Internship: Palomares Social Justice Center in Moline, Ill.
Post-grad plans: Law school
I chose Augustana because it was close to home, and I know a lot of people from my church who have attended and had great things to say about it so I knew it offered a great education.
Are you where you thought you’d be four years ago?
No. I have grown a lot academically and with my civic engagement. I never imagined that I would have visited three countries, be the vice president of Latinx Unidos or that I would design my own research project for my Senior Inquiry and get funded for it.
Who helped you get to where you are now?
I have to give a big shout-out to my family for supporting me through this endeavor. I also have to give thanks to Dr. Araceli Masterson-Algar, Dr. Mariano Magalhães and Dr. Chris Strunk for running the Latin American studies program and for providing mentorship during my college years. Because of them I have grown academically and as a social advocate, and I thank them for encouraging me and pushing me to the best of my abilities.
A peak experience?
Being able to design my own research project for my Senior Inquiry and receiving the Augustana Summer Research Fellowship. I designed a project where I got to go to Mexico and interview families of migrants so that I could better understand migration.
What surprised you?
I learned that while I may not be the most polished public speaker, I have a certain awkward charm that is appealing to my audiences, and I have gotten a lot of practice in the various leadership positions I hold.
How did you use Augie Choice?
I went on the Augustana Symphonic Band Tour to Spain. It was definitely an unforgettable experience.
What will you miss the most?
I will miss the professors. My advisors and even professors who aren’t my advisors have provided a lot of mentorship to me. I know they genuinely care about me and want me to exceed not only academically but as a person as well.
Advice for Class of 2021?
Talk to your advisors and professors! They are a resource and wonderful human beings. They are very passionate, not only about their fields of study but about teaching and mentoring students. If I hadn’t made connections with my professors, I probably would not have known about all the opportunities that Augustana has to offer.
“Lizandra has been a true leader on campus, in part by raising awareness of the conditions of Latino students and organizing events that aim to disseminate information about Latin America. She is also a key member in the Latino community in the Moline area. Finally, and perhaps most impressively, she conducted research in Mexico last summer for her Senior Inquiry project on Mexican immigrants. These experiences, and more, will serve her extremely well as she embarks on the next chapter in her life.”