Maria Jimenez
Headshot of CPCC Student Maria Jimenez

In the midst of violent protest, Maria Jimenez made a difficult choice to leave her home country of Venezuela to study English in Charlotte. Maria wanted to further her education in the city she fell in love with, but didn't know where to start. Her English mentor suggested Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC).

Maria immediately knew she made the right decision to enroll. She met with a career counselor and found a passion for communication and new media design. She filled the void of leaving family and friends by getting involved in college organizations like Student Government Association (SGA), Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) honor society, and Global Student Association. Programs like Student Ambassadors also offered a way to be part of a community.

"The diversity in the student body has been my true support," she said. "Starting over without family or friends in this country was my biggest challenge; however, meeting people from different countries who have been on similar paths made me feel understood and not alone anymore."

"CPCC was the best place to start my education. Not only did I find a high-quality education, but I also discovered meaningful programs and associations which helped me grow in a professional and academic environment. CPCC gave me the opportunity to develop into the person I have always wanted to be," she said.