Brayden Serna, a junior majoring in health administration, has lived in the area his entire life, graduating from Penn High School in 2018. He is a local and proud of it - Brayden specifically chose to attend IU South Bend because he wanted to stay in Michiana as he worked toward his degree. I really like living in this area. I have access to everything I need, and should I ever need to go on a longer drive, I enjoy the ride, says Brayden.
For the past four years, Brayden has worked in an elementary school, spending two of those as the coordinator of a before and after school childcare program at Elm Road Elementary School in Mishawaka. Seeing some of the kids first thing in the morning and right after a long day of school has always been exciting to me, since I get to be one of the first people they see to start their day off. Then in the afternoons, I love to spend time outside with them, playing games, planning gym activities, having special celebrations throughout the year, and many other fun and exciting things!
Although Brayden’s love of helping others originally led him to major in education, he ultimately realized that he wanted to do so on a larger scale in more of a business capacity. He is now on his way to earning his health administration degree. I want to be a hospital administrator. I have always had a strong desire to be in a leadership position, explains Brayden.
Being a university student in the age of COVID-19 has posed many unprecedented challenges, but Brayden has quickly adapted, thanks to the support of his professors. At first, it was very nerve wracking for me as I did not know what to expect. For me, one of the biggest challenges has been losing the ability to see professors face to face, especially since I take advantage of office hours. I enjoy connecting with my professors, but I at least still have the ability to do that virtually. I must say that my professors have been very supportive during the pandemic and reassuring that they are here to help if we need it, so that alleviated a lot of the stress I had at first.
After getting used to his new normal last spring, Brayden is ready to have a successful fall semester, regardless of the challenges of the pandemic. My goals are to remain on the dean’s list after having done so for four straight semesters, gain experience in the healthcare field before I begin a new job, and meet new people.