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CU Nursing student Chidozirim Stanudeze

“Sustained Adrenaline” Keeps this Student Going

Written by Dana Brandorff on July 10, 2024

“I haven’t slept since I turned 17,” says BS in Nursing student Chidozirim Stanudeze. When she graduates from CU Anschutz Medical Campus with her nursing degree in 2025, she will be one of the youngest in her class.

CU Nursing Student Chidozirim Stanudeze

CU Nursing student Chidozirim Stanudeze.

At 20, she has graduated from high school, taken concurrent college classes, joined the Army, been through basic training, and is becoming an officer through ROTC. She doesn’t stop. She calls it “sustained adrenaline.”

As she says, “Life is different when you’re young. I have no dependents, have energy and my brain is young.”

The eldest of four children, Stanudeze’s father emigrated from Nigeria through the Diversity Immigrant Visa program when she was seven years old. He came to the US first, then the family followed, ending up in Colorado.

In high school, she knew a career in science was what she wanted and was focused on public health or microbiology. Not knowing if nursing was for her, she did a lot of volunteer work, took care of her siblings and grandfather with cancer, and saw him deteriorate. She heard about the Integrated Nursing Pathway program and began asking many questions while juggling concurrent classes at the Community College of Aurora. “I learned to advocate for myself. If I wanted it, I was going to make it happen.”

Before Covid, Stanudeze was a high school student with no interest in the military, and like many had a bit of a bias against it. Looking to make college possible, she joined the Army straight out of high school for the college benefits and fell in love with “being better.” With no family in the military, Stanudeze sought answers and discovered a place where anything is “doable”, risk-taking is encouraged, and becoming a leader is possible. “The experience has been good for my mental agility.”

Diversity Immigrant Visa

According to the Diversity Immigrant Visa website, the program provides up to 50,000 immigrant visas available annually, drawn from random selection among all entries to individuals who are from countries with low rates of immigration to America. Distributed among six geographic regions, no single country can receive more than 7% of the available DVs in any one year.

Even though Stanudeze is closing in on graduation, she still has commitments to the Army. She has to cut this semester short to attend a 35-day leadership course in Kentucky. Before she leaves, she’s cramming in nursing coursework so that she can keep on track for graduation. “That’s the small downside of being in the military. You’re at someone else’s beck and call. There’s so much more that outweighs that small inconvenience. And the bonus is that it makes me much more organized.”

Determined. Energetic. Focused. Stanudeze has proven she’s a force to be reckoned with.