Alumni Edition: Aven Satre-Meloy '13

Since graduating in 2013, Aven Satre-Meloy has moved seven times.  Out of the country, across the country and right back to Santa Clara. For someone hailing from Helena, Montana, these moves were uncharted territory. However, Aven has spent his two years after graduating from Santa Clara taking advantage of incredible opportunities provided to him through the University. You may know Aven as the graduate who received the Rhodes Scholarship, but there are a multitude of other activities in which he has participated.

As a student, Aven was a Community Facilitator in the CyPhi Residential Learning Community, chief justice of ASG, and worked closely in associations regarding ethics and sustainability. While participating in such amazing activities at Santa Clara, Aven still found time to travel the world. He studied abroad in Rome and participated in a Global Fellows program where he worked in Turkey for two months between his sophomore and junior year. He graduated in 2013 with degrees in Political Science and Environmental Studies, with a minor in International Studies. 

Post-graduation, Aven traveled back to Turkey through the Fulbright program, where he worked at the University of Kirikkale. He taught English to students who were required to attend a year-long intensive English preparatory program before attending the University as full time students. Without initially speaking much Turkish, Aven still navigated his classroom with ease, teaching his students how to write and speak English. After living in Turkey, Aven was a fall-intern at the White House (yes, the big one in Washington D.C… like the one where the President of the United States lives). So if you’re not impressed yet, Aven has met the President, First Lady, Vice President, and the like. But of course, there was work to be done as well. Aven worked with legislators regarding energy and climate policy during his internship. 

With a resume as extensive as Aven’s, Santa Clara University is happy to have him back at the President’s office employed as a Presidential Fellow. While here, he has three primary responsibilities: to work with students on leadership development, to aid with the office of student life and to work with the President. However, Aven is only here until October, as he will be traveling to London to attend Oxford University.

As an exemplary Bronco, we should all take note of Aven’s advice to current students. The hardest lesson Aven learned at Santa Clara was letting go of some responsibilities after spreading himself too thin throughout his junior year. He advises students to "pick what you are most passionate about and pursue it in-depth, as you will instantly put in more effort to activities in which you are truly interested in." Aven also stresses that it’s okay to not know what the future holds. Aven himself did not know, nor does he know now, what his career path is.  He encourages students to take a variety of classes so that they can hone in on what they love. Aven also cites strong relationships with professors as aiding him in all of his activities post-graduation: "A student must make oneself stand out in the classroom to make a good first impression. You can always drop in to office hours, even just to get to know the professor better."

To Aven, Swig Hall contains his favorite memories (as I’m sure it does for most other Broncos). Both as a Freshman on first floor and a CF on sixth floor, Aven helped create a Swig family and has sustained friendships with these “family” members throughout his post-collegiate years.  Aven described Swig, specifically due to its height and the tall red lights at the top, as an emblem of home; the metaphor of a true community at Santa Clara. Whether driving or flying to or away from Santa Clara, (and Aven has traveled near and far) Swig will always evoke fond memories and a sense of belonging at Santa Clara. It has helped Aven become a Bronco for life, and we hope he continues his involvement with Santa Clara as we are happy to have him here.