Openness to Growth Continues for Andres Farina '15

Arriving at CTK in the fall of 2011, Andres Farina ’15 didn’t see himself as a someone who embraced new experiences, having grown up and attended school in a close knit Mexican community. He entered CTK as one of our first Latino students, overcoming what he termed as “the initial culture shock” to successfully assimilate with his classmates. By his senior year, he had been selected as the Cross Country team captain, a NHS team member, and a Student Council member.

After CTK, Andres was accepted at Loyola University Chicago, but determined the associated cost was too high for his family to afford. CTK’s staff introduced him to a new, affordable and culturally diverse option for an Associate’s degree. Andres was part of the Arrupe College of Loyola University Chicago’s first graduating class.  “I couldn’t ask for a better experience – being part of something new, the diverse study body, and supportive faculty was a perfect fit for me.”

After graduating from Arrupe, Andres took a semester off and turned to CTK College Counselor, Mr. Zundel for assistance with the next step in his college journey.  Eastern Illinois University turned out to be the best opportunity for Andres to complete his Bachelor’s in Marketing. It would also involve a first experience of living on his own, away from his home and family. He admitted to it being a bumpy initial transition for him, but he rebounded by his 2nd semester to better manage his time and dramatically improve his grades.  

Now in his final college semester, Andres is looking ahead to his next step in his journey – starting his career with a full-time job in marketing.  His interest in marketing was originally sparked at one of his CTK Corporate Work Study Program jobs at Network Insights. He also had an opportunity to work part-time at the Lincoln Park Zoo in Guest Experience while at Arrupe.

His advice to current CTK students, including his brother Ruben ‘22 is to: “Take advantage of what’s presented to you. You have the rare opportunity to explore different experiences and careers, with a staff that genuinely wants to help you to be successful.”  Best of luck, Andres!