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Caldwell University student Jessica Arebalo at the top of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania over her winter break.

Caldwell, N. J., Jan. 22, 2019 – For Caldwell University student Jessica Arebalo it was a “true lifetime achievement and once in a lifetime experience” when she reached the top of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania over her winter break.

“It is a complete joy to say I have summited Mount Kilimanjaro at 19,341 feet…it is the closest I’ll ever be to being on the top of the world,” said Arebalo,  a senior majoring in social studies and minoring in criminal justice.  “After seven days and putting my body through extreme exhaustion, pushing myself past the mental and physical breaking point, I was able to stand above the clouds.”  Mount Kilimanjaro is one of the seven highest summits in the world, 9,688 feet shy of the tallest, Mount Everest.

While maintaining A’s in her grades for the past year, Arebalo, of Hoboken, New Jersey, knew she needed time to reset during the winter break. “Now I am ready to take the last six classes I need to graduate while working full time as an EMT and a 911 operator overnights.”

“As promised, a moment that’s literally frozen in time,” she said of the photo in which she proudly stands at the top of the mountain with a Caldwell University pennant. She hopes her feat inspires other students “to dream and achieve” and mostly to know that they can manage it all—“travel, school, work and family.”

Watch News 12 New Jersey’s story
“Balancing it all: First responder, mom, college student finds time to climb Mount Kilimanjaro”