St. Edward's University alumni have excelled in a broad range of diverse and fulfilling careers.
Some are on the path to senior management at international Fortune 500 companies. Some are creative entrepreneurs finding smarter ways to serve bourgeoning markets in the U.S and around the world. Still others are pursuing careers focused on social justice. And many graduates have built distinguished careers in education, public service and the arts. But the St. Edward's graduates featured below have some common traits as well, including curiosity, commitment and a deep yearning for personal growth and professional excellence. They also share an appreciation for how an education with a global perspective prepared them for the next stage in their lives.
See how St. Edward's alumni are making a difference.
See how St. Edward's University alumni are making a difference
Richard Lee Buangan ’97
Occupation: U.S. Foreign Service; Press spokesman at the U.S. Embassy in China (speaks four languages: English, French, Spanish and Mandarin)
Hometown: San Diego, Calif.
Major: Political Science; Economics minor
Campus Involvement: Student Government Association; Great Society political science club, co-founder
Awards/Honors: Graduated magna cum laude; recipient of the Department of State's Superior Honor Award
Goal: “To enjoy a life enriched with rare opportunities for public service.”
Buangan gained hands-on experience at St. Edward's by co-founding the Great Society political science club, interning at the Texas Governor's Office and being elected student body vice president. “One of the things that's great about St. Edward's is that you're not sitting in a class of 300 students listening to a lecture. It's about going out there and doing it.”
After graduation, he jumped on an opportunity to join the Foreign Service. “My first post was in Africa, a continent I'd only read about in stories as a child. Some people couldn't take the culture shock. But four years at St. Edward's prepared me, giving me a sense of maturity, understanding and cultural awareness.” Next stops: Paris, then Washington, D.C., and now Beijing. As press spokesman at the U.S. Embassy in China, Buangan manages U.S. government media relations during historic events such as the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the visits of Presidents Bush and Obama. He is now a key U.S. government media contact on Sino-U.S. relations for some of the world's most influential media outlets, such as CNN, The New York Times, Reuters and The Washington Post.
Claire Cella ’10
Occupation: Fulbright Teaching Assistant, teaching English in Thailand
Hometown: Fleischmanns, New York
Degree: English Writing and Rhetoric
Activities: Hilltop Views student newspaper, editor-in-chief; Sorin Oak Review literary magazine, staff editor; Fulbright scholar; Honors Program; Norman Mailer College Nonfiction Writing Competition Finalist; NCAA Division II Hilltopper women's soccer team
Goal: “To continue learning and challenging myself — whether pursuing a PhD near home or extending my time overseas.”
While a student, Cella interned at publications including The Long Island Press, Texas Monthly Magazine and EdibleAustin. She traveled to Thailand before her senior year and taught English at an elementary school. “The St. Edward's curriculum — especially the Honors Program — gave me a background in world history, economics, current events, literature and intensive research. I'm confident that I'm on track for anything I may confront in my future, wherever my heart and mind may take me.”
As the recipient of a prestigious Fulbright Teaching Assistantship, Cella returned to Thailand after graduation to teach English and continue her research before entering graduate school. “I love, and always will love, being a student. My four years at St. Edward’s — the small classes, my close relationships with my professors and the supportive campus community — just strengthened my desire to continue my education. My plans for the future are wide open. It’s exhilarating.”
Isaac Chapa MSCIS ’08
Occupation: CSID, Vice President of Information Systems and Operations
Hometown: Premont, Texas
Degree: Master of Science in Computer Information Systems
Activities: Board member for Ascend Center for Learning, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping adults improve their lives through education
Goal: “Retire or at least have the option to retire by age 35.”
Chapa's interactions with his fellow students expanded his personal worldview. “All of my courses at St. Edward's had a great mix of talented students who worked in various businesses, both locally and with an international presence. Sharing the classroom with other students with such diverse work experience allowed me to share and discuss various perspectives that I otherwise would not have experienced on my own.”
St. Edward's provided an academically rich environment that was relevant to Chapa's daily work life. “I was able to discuss and learn business and technological methodologies that were applicable on a day to day basis.”
Daniel Guerrero MSOLE ’09
Occupation: City of San Marcos, Mayor
Hometown: San Marcos, Texas
Degree: Master of Science in Organizational Leadership and Ethics
Activities: Serves as the Executive Director for the San Marcos Education Foundation, where he directs community leaders in fundraising and awareness for teachers and students of the San Marcos school district.
Goal: Pursue a PhD in Educational Leadership
During the second year of his graduate program at St. Edward’s, Guerrero traveled with an MBA cohort to Prague. “The experience along with our regular discussions of how global markets and leadership impact our local communities expanded my understanding of how our ideas can change society at different levels.”
Guerrero took an intangible, but priceless, lesson from his experience on the hilltop. “Faith is a belief in things not seen. At St. Edward’s, I was finally able to see the leadership potential that others saw in me. The support from my professors and cohort helped me to accept the leadership challenges that God had blessed me with and prepared me to endure as a community leader.’”