Interview with Alexis '20 - Selected as a Cristo Rey Scholar at Loyola Chicago

For the first time in 6 years, a CTK student has been awarded a prestigious Cristo Rey Scholarship to Loyola University Chicago.  As a Cristo Rey Scholar, Alexis is part of a select cohort group of 5 Loyola students per year that receive a full-ride scholarship, and participation in a dynamic program to enrich their academic, social, spiritual, community, and professional experiences in college.

We had a chance to catch up with Alexis soon after she was notified she had received the scholarship.

How did you feel when you found out you were awarded the scholarship, and why is Loyola the right school for you?

I was really excited and surprised. My parents were super happy for me.  I didn’t think I would get it, and almost didn’t apply. There are students applying from all over the country, and the application included two essays.  College Counselor, Mr. Zundel encouraged and helped me through the process. As soon as I got the full scholarship, my college decision was an easy one. I really like the diversity at Loyola. Within the Cristo Rey Scholar program, there will be other students with similar backgrounds to mine who I hope to build relationships with. It’s also close to home and my family, and has a great reputation that will help me later when I’m looking for a job. 

What will you be studying at Loyola?

I plan to major in Biology, but also minor or double major in Exercise Science.  Eventually I’d like to go into Forensic Science or study diseases at the CDC.  If possible, I’d like to be a personal trainer as a side job while in school.  I really like studying the human body, what makes it work, and how it reacts to food and exercise.  I also like helping people, and would want to be able to do that all of my life.

How has going to Christ the King prepared you for college?

CTK has done a really good job of pushing me to keep going and do my best.  The teachers really care about the students. They do way more than teach, they reach out to get to know and care about as persons.  I also learned so much at my CWSP job at CIDC Bank for 4 years. There were times that I thought I was doing my best, but I learned to push myself harder, and not just get the work done, but look for new ways to solve problems.  They were supportive of me from day one, especially my supervisors, Sarah Coppoletta and Cheryl Gahan. They were all very supportive as I applied to schools and for scholarships, asking me for the latest news.

How have you grown during your time at CTK?

I am definitely more open-minded. I have learned the importance of looking into other people’s perspectives. The importance of building relationships and getting to know people.  I also am more of a leader, as a volleyball captain and National Honor Society President, I look to try to bring everyone together. Through the service projects like Dignity Breakfast, I saw the impact I can have on people, and made me more grateful for my family.

What will you miss about CTK, and what advice do you have for CTK underclassmen?

Well, being at home the last few months, I already miss the people and relationships.  Making memories with my friends and classmates.  Unfortunately, it was the last time seeing and being in school with them.

My advice to underclassmen: Don’t procrastinate. Keep trying to push yourself harder. If you are not feeling challenged enough, reach out and push yourself even harder.  You’ll be surprised what you can accomplish.

An event the CTK community looks forward to each year is the College Signing Day ceremony.  On that day, each senior announces his or her college choice. This year’s Signing Day event has been moved to Wednesday, May 27th and due to the building closure will be CTK’s first virtual College Signing Day. 

Congrats to Alexis and her Class of 2020 classmates for persevering through an unexpected end to their senior year!