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Sergeant Marlene Garcia: Hi, my name is Sergeant Marlene Edior Garcia. I'm a 38 Bravo, which is a Civil Affairs Specialist, along with a 68 Golf, which is a Patient Administration Specialist.

In my sophomore year of college, I kind of just lost focus. I was struggling to pay for college. I actually had tons of student loans and didn't know how I was going to complete school.

Emotionally, I felt that I was nothing. I was just going to be like everybody else, and I knew that wasn't for me. I wanted to have a career, and I wanted to be someone and also help other people.

Well, I joined the Army to further my education. And I wanted to go back to school to pursue nursing. Because of the Army Reserve, I've learned to have more confidence in myself and as long as I have persistence I can go anywhere that I need to go.

Mary Cacace, Professor and Nurse Practitioner: Marlene does have that very self-directed, self-responsible attitude, and I think Marlene Garcia is a true picture of a person who has been able to merge the Army Reserve with nursing to show the best of both worlds.

Sergeant Marlene Garcia: For me, being an Army Reserve Soldier gives me such an internal joy. To see that I'm making a difference in somebody else's life. As a Civil Affairs Specialist, we basically win the hearts and minds of the local population. We're the link between the civilians and the military.

Lieutenant Colonel Dave Hubbard, Civil Affairs Officer: Sergeant Garcia is an excellent Civil Affairs Soldier because she has the skills that are unique to dealing with the public on a one-on-one basis.

Sergeant Marlene Garcia: Because of the Army Reserve, I have become a Registered Nurse, which works perfectly for me because I can intertwine what I've learned as a nurse and embed it into my Army Reserve job.

Mary Cacace, Professor and Nurse Practitioner: They are getting the benefit of being in an environment that is enhancing the skills and the trades that really make you a better nurse.

Cristi Bundukamara, Associate Professor: The Army Reserve is a great way to develop the character and the discipline that you need to be successful in college.

Sergeant Marlene Garcia: The workload in college is very stressful, and by being an Army Reserve Soldier, it actually benefits me because I'm more focused and driven.

Cristi Bundukamara, Associate Professor: Well, I would say to any young person considering the Army or the Army Reserve that you go ahead and take that step because you won't regret it.

Sergeant Marlene Garcia: Because I have my Army experience, it has bettered me as a nurse and as a better human being.

Cristi Bundukamara, Associate Professor: The Army Reserve has produced a great nurse in Marlene Garcia.

Sergeant Marlene Garcia: I tell anyone that has any type of goals and dreams to keep on going for it, because at one time I didn't have anything, and now I have everything that I want.

Become who you were meant to be through the Army Reserve.

For me, being an Army Reserve Soldier gives me such an internal joy to see I’m making a difference in somebody else’s life.

NAME: SGT Marlene Garcia
JOB: Civil Affairs Specialist (38B)
SERVICE TYPE: Army Reserve

Sergeant Marlene Garcia started out as a college sophomore who was struggling to pay for school. Since she’s joined the Army, she’s achieved more than she ever thought possible.