Ever since she was a young girl, Claudia Estrada has always wanted to be a nurse. It’s a dream of hers that has been a reality in the making through her years as an RN at Carlsbad Medical Center and nursing instructor at NMSU Carlsbad.
“I can’t draw my mind to a time when I decided I wanted to be a nurse. I just always knew that was what I was going to do,” said Estrada. “I have an older sister, aunt, and cousin who are nurses, so nursing is kind of in the family.”
While attending high school, Estrada took advantage of a program that helped students pursue potential careers while attending class. For half a day, Estrada went to class, and then worked in an operating room the other half.
“That really familiarized me with healthcare and cemented my plans to be a nurse,” added Estrada. “So I knew where I was going when I went on to college.”
Estrada completed her Associate Degree in Nursing at NMSU Carlsbad in 1985, and later obtained her bachelor’s degree at University of New Mexico and her master’s degree at University of Phoenix. She was drawn to adult health, and worked in the medical unit in Carlsbad before deciding to take up a teaching post at NMSU Carlsbad in 1999.