Scholarship for childhood cancer survivor: 'I just want to someday become a nurse'

Lydia Pankratz is one of 35 students selected by Northwestern Mutual to receive a scholarship.

Posted: Jan 7, 2020 6:26 PM
Updated: Jan 8, 2020 8:31 AM

ROCHESTER, Minn. - A company is helping a Rochester teen who beat childhood cancer land her dream job.

Lydia Pankratz, 19, was diagnosed with leukemia in 2012. Due to treatment, she missed most of her sixth-grade year in school.

Now thanks in part to a $5,000 renewable scholarship from Northwestern Mutual, she's attending the University of Northwestern - St. Paul to study nursing.

Pankratz tells KIMT News 3 she's looking to work in pediatrics.

"I was so touched by the nurses here at Mayo Clinic and I just loved the details of all the treatment," Pankratz said. "And I think I just want to someday become a nurse and someday be able to relate to the patients and kind of understand what they're going through. And just be able to care for them the way I was cared for."

Currently, Pankratz is in remission. She says she'll be officially cured of cancer on January 14.

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