Major: Associate in Science
Ugne Narbutaite initially wanted to enroll at the University of Illinois at Chicago. However, her brother attended College of DuPage, and she realized that a community college would allow her more time to determine what career to pursue as well as find out more about herself.
For example, when she started at COD, Narbutaite obtained a job in the Student Life office and learned more about the Student Leadership Council. She decided to run for vice president of the SLC while submitting her application to become the student representative on the Illinois Community College Board’s Student Advisory Committee, hoping that she would obtain one of the positions.
“No matter what happened, I knew I wanted to involve myself as a student,” she said. “I surprised even myself in terms of how involved I was at COD.”
Narbutaite was selected as the student representative for the Student Advisory Committee, filling the seat previously held by COD student Stephanie Torres. Narbutaite didn’t even know the position existed until speaking with Torres. Over the course of several conversations, Narbutaite learned how the student representative works on initiatives that help all community colleges in the state.
“I’m the type of person who goes for an opportunity when it presents itself,” she said. “The experience made me more aware of issues that schools face and how these issues can be addressed.”
Narbutaite, a lifelong athlete, transferred to Loyola University Chicago, after which she will apply to physical therapy schools both in and out of the country. She also works as a physical therapist technician at an immediate care center and volunteers at Misericordia.
“I do enjoy interacting with people,” she said. “I’ve seen friends go through surgery and recovery, and I’ve done whatever I could to help them get on their feet. I want to help people regain their strength and rebuild their confidence.”
Narbutaite is grateful that she chose College of DuPage.
“I was so scared my senior year in high school when I thought about college. Now I’m excited about the future,” she said. “Spending two years at a community college were an extra two years that helped me explore who I am and what I wanted to do.
“My experience with ICCB was one that I will take with me as I pursue my career. I always want to be open to try new things, and I want to continue putting myself out there to see what I enjoy doing.”