"Shadowing medical professionals during eye surgeries and gaining real-world insights shaped my aspirations."
At Arrupe Jesuit High School we wanted to celebrate the remarkable journey of Samantha Cordova, an Arrupe alumna whose dedication and post-graduate achievements have shaped her into an inspiring leader and dedicated servant of the community. Samantha is also a graduate of Loyola University Chicago where she studied Health Systems Management, Boston University School of Public Health where she earned a Master's Degree in Healthcare Management and Uniformed Services University where she earned a degree in Health Services.
Currently serving as the Associate Director of Residential Services at Support, Inc. Samantha plays a pivotal role in supporting individuals with intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, fostering an environment of care and empowerment. Simultaneously, she serves as a Second Lieutenant in a Medical Aviation Unit in Colorado Springs, and will soon assume the role of Finance Officer, taking on a new leadership role within her unit.
Samantha's journey is marked by triumphs and challenges that come with active duty and deployment that are all part of her officer training. During the rigors of this program, Samantha navigated the challenges and difficulties that come with separation from family during pivotal life events. However, in these challenging times, she discovered the immeasurable strength found in camaraderie—leaning on fellow trainees who were navigating similar challenges.
Samantha grew up in the North Side of Denver and was a graduate of Wayne Carle Middle School in Westminster. Her journey to Arrupe Jesuit was a result of a newspaper article highlighting the college acceptance rates of Arrupe, and her mother's thorough research into Arrupe's unique opportunities led to Samantha's enrollment—a decision that would profoundly shape her future.
Reflecting on her journey, Samantha shares the wisdom earned from embracing rejection and failure—lessons she wishes she could have imparted to her younger self. "Thinking about my high school years, the joy of athletics during my Junior and Senior years playing Volleyball and Soccer stands out," Samantha recalls. "It was beyond wins; it was the bonds forged with close friends, shared laughter, and Coach Pete's quirky motivators that made those moments invaluable."
At Arrupe, Samantha's experiences in various work study roles, particularly within medical settings, ignited her passion for serving in healthcare. Samantha expressed, "Shadowing medical professionals during eye surgeries and gaining real-world insights shaped my aspirations."
Throughout her journey, Matt Paradise, a devoted faculty member and administrator, stood as a beacon of guidance and influence. "Mr. Paradise, my first teacher at Arrupe, epitomized unwavering support and guidance," Samantha acknowledges. "His commitment to shaping student lives left an enduring impact, guiding me and my peers through pivotal moments."
Samantha Cordova's remarkable journey embodies the very essence of Arrupe Jesuit High School—a testament to the transformative power of education centered on community, service, and personal growth. Her unwavering dedication to service and leadership stands as a testament to the impact of an Arrupe education, inspiring us all to strive for excellence, embrace challenges, and serve our communities with passion and dedication.