Citiana Belaynah

Citiana Belaynah

Preferred Pronouns

she/her

Hometown

Bowie, MD

Current Program of Study

Nursing and Healthcare Management Coordinated Dual Degree, Nursing/Wharton Impact Scholar

Cohort Year

2026

Citiana is a current sophomore in the coordinated dual degree program between Nursing and Wharton, with a concentration in healthcare management. She is passionate about the intersection of healthcare, business, and technology. At school, she is involved with various organizations such as the Wharton Undergraduate Dean’s Advisory Board, Penn Financial Literacy Club, and Wharton Undergraduate Healthcare Club. Last summer, Citiana worked with a healthcare investor for a venture capital firm alongside of multiple healthcare startups. Outside of the classroom, she loves traveling, trying new restaurants with friends, spending time with her Havenese puppy Jojo, and filming vlogs.

Althougth I have not fully decided on my future career path, I know that I’ll have many options to make an impact. Whether I work as a healthcare investor, nurse, founder of my own company, or all of the above at some point, I know that I’ll have the ability to serve others and give back to my community.

What's your favorite place to eat on campus or in the city?

On campus: Louie Louie; In the city: Her Place (founder is a Penn alum!)

What's your favorite non-required or elective class?

SOCI 0001: Poverty and Inequality

What's your favorite Penn perk (e.g. access to museum, ICA, athletics, Arboretum, etc)?

Access to the Penn Museum.

What's your favorite place on campus?

Views from the Schuylkill River.

What's your favorite Penn activity / hobby outside of class (e.g. on-campus groups, clubs, athletics, volunteering, etc)?

Working on the Wharton Undergraduate Dean’s Advisory Board.

The most memorable moment I've had at Penn Nursing so far is...?

Being a student in Penn Nursing has truly been a life-changing moment for me. I’ve been able to gain a variety of tangible knowlegde and training. My most memorable moment thus far has to be my first ever clinical in the labor and delivery unit! Leading up, we received so much practice and training that I felt more comfortable going into the hospital, but still didn’t know what to fully expect. During our anatomy and pharm sim labs, we’re able to practice with manikins and be given different scenarios. Through these practices and assessments, I’ve been able to learn how to think and make decisions like a nurse! And so, when I had my first clinical, I was able to work alongside my nurse and talk with real patients assisting them in different ways. I got to see a vaginal birth within my first few weeks and a C-section! I’m able to see the daily work nurses do, how they come to make decisions, and look for ways the healthcare system can be improved. My clinical instructors have been so helpful and have made my experience even more memorable. I cannot wait for more clinicals and the experience I’ll get to have with different patients!

Is there anything that you wish you knew before coming to Penn?

As a high schooler, I knew I wanted to be at Penn. I loved the unique dual degree program and how beautiful campus is, but I didn’t know if I would find a strong community and organizations I enjoyed. Little did I know, I would be surrounded by amazing people in different organizations and receive so much support. From joining the Wharton Undergraduate Dean’s Advisory Board, Penn Financial Literacy Club, Minorities in Nursing Organization, Wharton Undergraduate Healthcare Club to forming lasting friendships, I was surprised by how much I would enjoy not only learning in the classroom, but meeting outstanding people that are truly here to help! The network of people I’ve been able to meet has helped me land internships, supported me through navigating classes, and even guided me on where to find the best places to eat in the city (p.s. there are a lot of great options!). I cannot thank Penn enough for the memories I’ve been able to make, they friends I’ve been able to meet, and the community of both Nursing and Wharton peers and faculty that have made Penn feel like home!

What is something that you really like about your program of study?

I love the duality of the classes I get to take and the skills I get to learn! On one day, I get to learn how to give medications in my Pharm lab while wearing my scrubs, and then head over to learning about financing firms in my Corporate Finance class. And then on the next day, I’ll have my clinical rotation at HUP working with real nursing and treating real patients, then I’ll walk over to my healthcare systems class where we have guest speakers, who are heads of renowned healthcare companies come in and speak every other week. The opportunities in this program are endless. From the classes, to the clubs, to the people I get to meet, the program offers me a chance to enhance my knowledge and skillset. No other program in the country offers this unique program, and I think the differentiating factor is what excites me. With both Nursing and Wharton, I’m able to gain unique skills and a variety experiences.

What's your favorite thing about your cohort and/or the community at Penn?

The communities at Penn have been so welcoming! I have formed lasting friendships, met outstanding professors, and am in a supportive program community that guides me through everything. During my freshman year, I joined STEP, a four-year program where I got to meet other Wharton students, have mentors, and build skills before starting classes. I have gained so much support from this organization and has made me feel welcome at Penn. Additionally, my Nursing and Healthcare Management cohort are all close to each other. A NHCM Advisory Board has recently been provided to strengthen the community within our small cohort and build out ways to improve. And within Nursing, I’ve been paired with an upperclassmen peer advisor who has truly helped me in more ways than one and is always there to support me!

What or who has inspired you the most while pursuing your degree, and why?

I think the impact that I’ll be able to make post-graduation and the insight that I’ll carry forward is what has most inspired me. Being in a dual degree, I’m able to learn from two sides of the story by learning from both the business and clinical side of healthcare. The knowledge and skills I will learn will allow me to impact the lives of so many. Althougth I have not fully decided on my future career path, I know that I’ll have many options to make an impact. Whether I work as a healthcare investor, nurse, founder of my own company, or all of the above at some point, I know that I’ll have the ability to serve others, give back to my community, and create a lasting impact!