TUCSON, Ariz. — University of Arizona graduating senior, Isabel Forlastro, was in a car accident in 2018. She was riding an Uber when the car was hit by a drunk driver.
"I just remember getting in the Uber and waking up kind of groggy in the hospital. A nurse was stitching my face and she told me I hit my head really hard on the passenger window. I split my head open really good, I knocked a few teeth out and I has a really bad concussion from that,” said Forlastro.
She medically withdrew the first semester of her senior year to recover. She came back the following semester and decided to stay a little longer.
"It was challenging but I'm glad I made the decision to do that and recover. And i did ultimately come out stronger on the other side,” said Forlastro.
She has now graduated with two degrees: one in microbiology and the other in veterinary science.
"I always had an interest in animals. In high school I was really active in my agriculture classes. I came from a small town so that was I big thing, where I came from,” said Forlastro.
But she said the timing ended up working perfectly, as she was able to figure out her passion in two different fields and merge them.
“It kind of all worked out in the end. I finally found what my niche is,” said Forlastro.
In the home stretch of her senior year, the COVID-19 pandemic hit, which left her figuring out how to finish college and then how to move to New York - one of the hardest hit states.
She is going to attend a PhD program at Cornell University for biomedical and biological sciences through the College of Veterinary Medicine.
"It was really difficult at first. It was very challenging. You know, having to figure out how I'm going to move during this pandemic. I just was flexible about it and I'm going to make it out on the other side,” said Forlastro.
She is still set to go to New York mid-July to get settled in for her new journey with Cornell.