Fernando’s journey to CU Boulder:
Fernando is a proud Colorado native who grew up in Denver and Aurora, where he went to George Washington High School. After graduation, he went to CSU in Fort Collins, where he studied psychology, sociology and Spanish. He realized he loved working with students in higher education and working with residence life, so he pursued a master’s degree in student affairs in administration at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana.
From there, he went to Washington State University to work as a hall director for a year and a half. Why Washington? “I love to travel, and I wanted something similar to Colorado, so I was mostly looking at places in and near California and Oregon.” He also wanted a land grant school! Fernando liked working at WSU, but he missed Colorado and academic advising – so he started looking for new opportunities near Denver.
He chose the Program in Environmental Design at CU Boulder because he has done his traveling, “Colorado is home!” and he loves advising. Boulder feels close to his hometown of Denver, but far enough away that he is able to have new experiences. The program also enables him to work with local, national and international students, which was a goal of his.
What does he do at ENVD?
“I do a little of a lot!” Fernando says; he works with advising, Designer’s Without Boundaries, the ENVD Ambassadors, and recruitment. With recruitment his focus is sharing with others why the Program in Environmental Design is different and what can be accomplished with the degree!
He wants students to know that his goals in his position are to build a rapport with students and to help them to get where they want to be. He is very approachable and relatable, and “students are priority!”
His favorite part of ENVD:
“I love how creative and motivated the students are here. Design programs can sound intimidating, but everyone here is so relatable and easygoing.”
Outside of work:
Fernando grew up road biking but has recently started mountain biking. He hopes to get out more to experience this as the days get longer and it warms up. In general, he loves being in the mountains! He’s also a self-proclaimed foodie and loves cooking (and eating). For the soccer fans out there, he loves the sport and his favorite international teams are Barcelona and Chelsea.
If you were a city, which city would you be and why?
“It’s hard not to say Denver,” he laughs, but decides upon Valparaiso, Chile, affectionately nicknamed “Valpo.” It’s a city that is very artsy – so much is their love of art that the city pays for murals to be painted throughout it. They are also very socially aware of what is going on in the city, and there is access to both the beach and the hills (best of both worlds).
What would you call the autobiography of your life?
“The Places I Have Been and The Places I Will Go”