Senior Spotlight: Laura Cifuentes-Almanza (’20)

As we celebrate the graduation of the Class of 2020, we share the experiences, memories and plans of some of our seniors.

Laura Cifuentes-Almanza (’20)
Hometown: Bogota, Colombia.
Major: Media Studies and Sociology with a minor in International Studies

I have been a Peer Advisor for three years. I have tutored in the Spanish Center for 2 years. I also was in LCTV and CAB for a while.

At first, I didn’t think it would be a good fit for me. I was a little hesitant about the college because when I accepted to come I had only seen three pictures and half-read the media studies program description. I was doing a really big move completely with very little knowledge of what Loras was. Now it is hard imagining my life without Loras. I have a family in Dubuque, Iowa. I have grown in ways I never expected and lived some really amazing adventures. Attending Loras was the best decision I made. My Loras experience was not what I expected, but what I needed.

I loved every single moment of being a Duhawk. From the long nights editing with my friends, all the debates with Dr. Garoutte and Dr. Parks, seeing all the first-year students I worked with navigate their first year, my impromptu appointments with Cindy Behnke in the CIA, and studying in the library until really late nights… There are too many good memories.

Looking ahead, my plan is to have no plan. I have been trying to figure life out for four years and the pandemic changed all my plans for after graduation. Now I want to enjoy whatever comes my way. I want to make some art, keep growing as a sociologist, teach my cat some tricks, and grow an herb garden back home.

About Loras College
Founded in 1839, Loras College leverages its historic roots as Iowa’s first college, the second oldest Catholic college west of the Mississippi River and one of the nation’s 10 diocesan colleges to deliver challenging, life-changing experiences as part of its residential, Catholic setting. In 2019, Loras was the second-highest ranked Catholic college in the state of Iowa according to College Consensus, the 16th Best Regional College in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report and one of America’s Top 200 Most Loved Colleges/Universities by Forbes Magazine for the third consecutive year. Loras students ranked No. 2 in the world as part of the global Peeptrade Investment Challenge while a second group ranked No. 4. For the 10th consecutive year, Loras Media Studies student-led television station (LCTV) was named the TV Station of the Year by the Iowa College Media Association (ICMA).