Devastation leads to new beginning

By Shilesky Montalvo, STAFF WRITER ’19

“Hurricane María left me without a house, zero communication, water shortage and unstable electric grid,” Victor A. Fuentes Ortiz, a junior business administration major, said.

Because of the devastation brought by Hurricane María, one student found refuge at Lebanon Valley College. That student is Victor A. Fuentes Ortiz. The junior transferred to Lebanon Valley College from the University of Puerto Rico.

“The University of Puerto Rico in Humacao was among the worst campus damaged by María,” Fuentes Ortiz said. “It is mold-infested and the roof leaked”

Fuentes Ortiz had to get accustomed to a new environment, the weather and being away from his family. Fuentes Ortiz decided to come to central Pennsylvania because his sister lives here, and it was the best way to continue his education.

“Even though my previous campus is destroyed, my desire to study is stronger than ever,” Fuentes Ortiz said.”

Fuentes Ortiz is grateful; he loves LVC for its quality of education, and because of the people on campus. He says everyone’s supportive and friendly.

“I come from a low-income household, and I was concerned about how expensive it would be to study in the U.S., especially in a private institution like LVC,” Fuentes Ortiz said. “When other institutions did not understand my situation, LVC, especially Mr. Roberto Marti [assistant director of admission & coordinator of transfer enrollment] helped when I needed it the most. At this moment, I felt valued.”

Fuentes Ortiz is continuing his studies as a business administration major. He intends to graduate in May 2019 and being a role model for future generations.