Graduation year: 2012
Major: Teaching Spanish
Minor: Latin American studies
Activities: Chargers Club Soccer Team, Casa Guanajuato, Augustana Observer
Post-grad plans: I hope to either teach Spanish at the high school level in the U.S. or teach English in Spain. I will also be applying to graduate schools with the hope of pursuing an advanced degree in Spanish literature or history.
Are you where you thought you'd be four years ago?
Not at all. I have come to understand myself in ways I did not know I could. I have discovered and pursued my aspirations to the fullest, and I have grown so much more as a person than I could have hoped for four years ago.
Why did you choose to attend Augustana?
I wanted to find a place where I could easily try my hand at several different majors and be able to live out my passions, all with the hope of discovering what I truly wanted to do with my life.
What did you learn about yourself in these past four years that surprised you?
I learned that I am a very passionate and hard-working individual who depends on the love and support given daily and without conditions from my family and my loved ones.
A peak experience?
Becoming a citizen of Spain this past November was a culminating achievement for me. It represents so many things I have been working for during my Augustana career: integrating myself into Spanish culture; studying the Spanish language, Spanish history, Spanish literature and Spanish soccer; and embracing my ancestral homeland as a huge part of my personal identity.
Who helped you get to where you are now?
Really every professor in the Spanish department has played an important role in forming me as a student and helping me accomplish my goals. David Arbesú has really pushed me, helping to bring out the most curious, ardent intellectual in me. Araceli Masterson has not only inspired me to pursue greater understanding of culture, identity and life in general, but her counsel and wisdom have pulled me through trying times and turning points in my life.
What will you miss the most about Augustana?
My roommate Martin Skantze '13, my friends and teammates, so many professors and Augustana staff, intramural sports and Dining Services’ peanut butter and chocolate brownies.
"Dean thinks out of the box and is constantly applying critical thinking to the situations he is exposed to. He described this first trip to Spain as a ‘life-changing experience’ and, since then, studying Spanish language and culture has become one of his passions. Thus, it is no surprise that Dean has achieved one of the highest proficiency levels that we have seen in the department in recent years, and has chosen to be a Spanish teacher for his professional career.”