CCC student aims to help in people's presents, not futures


Coconino Community College student Caitlen Kashinskie is studying nursing to be of service to others.



FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - Coconino Community College student Caitlen Kashinskie served this country in the U.S. Army for eight years – four active, four reserve. 


For much of that time, she was a paralegal specialist, and in civilian life, she continued that profession for the Coconino County Attorney’s Office.


She would see photos and hear stories of suffering, of pain, of helplessness.


“And I couldn’t do anything,” she said, adding that much of her work benefitted people down the road, in the future. “For me, I wanted to help immediately.”


She tried family law, but she encountered the same sense of not being able to help in the present. So, she used her access to the G.I. Bill to go back to school.


“And here I am,” she said, smiling.


Originally from Tuba City on the Navajo Nation but now a Flagstaff resident, her goal is to become a nurse. She’s in the first-year cohort at CCC.


“You can help people in all different stages of healing,” Kashinskie said. There’s bedside care, restorative and rehabilitative care, and end-of-life care, among others. “I have a bleeding heart. I want to help people who need help whenever I can, if I can.”


When she made the choice to go back to school, she had the support of her husband, but money would be tight. She works nights and weekends at The Peaks, helping seniors and people undergoing rehabilitation.


Her money worries have been alleviated with the help of the CCC Veterans Scholarship offered through the CCC Foundation.


“It helps a lot,” she said, adding that her two youngest children are in daycare, and her mother helps when she works at her job. “It helps with not working as many hours to make ends meet, so I can focus on school.”


Kashinskie, interested in Intensive Care Unit or Emergency Department work as a nurse, appreciates being selected for the scholarship.


“It motivates me to be a better student, because I want to say ‘thank you’ and prove they made a right choice in picking me,” Kashinskie said.


For more information about scholarships available through CCC, visit the CCC Foundation at



Thursday, 17th October 2019 12:00 AM

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  • Thursday, 17th October 2019 12:00 AM