Alisa Zoccoli is a returning student after being a stay-at-home mother of six sons for the past 26 years. She and her husband, her high school sweetheart, just celebrated their 30-year wedding anniversary. Becoming a nurse was Alisa’s childhood dream, yet due to early childhood trauma and sexual abuse, she lacked confidence, direction, and motivation to complete her education. She suffered from anxiety and depression, leading to dropping out of classes, and eventually from college altogether. On her Positive Paths application, she said “Now it is comeback time. I can no longer allow what happened to me to define me. After many years and much personal growth, it is time to pursue my dream, to show my sons and the world the value of overcoming, of hard work, discipline, persistence, and dedication.”

Alisa graduated in May from Chandler-Gilbert Community College with an AAS in Nursing. She has been dual enrolled in a concurrent program for the past two years through Arizona State University and graduated in December 2021 summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

The Positive Paths scholarship program has provided relief for the family’s finances, allowing Alisa to focus on her program and family needs. Alisa is also grateful for her Positive Paths mentor Diana, who has continuously offered guidance and inspiration, and is always available for questions and concerns.

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