Melanie Ortiz, College Counselor at Rauner College Prep

1. What high school did you attend? Rauner College Prep

2. What are some of your hobbies outside of work? Outside of work, I love to spend time with the people I love—especially my five year old niece, Mia. My favorite hobbies include trying new restaurants, working out, sleeping in on the weekends, and traveling. 

3. What is one highlight of your work so far at Noble? It’s really difficult choosing just one highlight but my mind keeps gravitating towards my advisory’s parties. My advisees and I really enjoy great food, so once a quarter, we have a food themed party during advisory. “Cultural Food Day” during their junior year tops the list!

4. Who is a role model or hero of yours and why? My mother is so ridiculously kind. She drove me to school every morning for four years when I was in high school. Any time we drove past a student in a navy blue, maroon, or white polo and khakis, she’d turn to me and ask “You know that kid?” Every single time I said “yes”, she’d pull our red mini van to the curb and tell the kid, “Get in! We’ll take you today.” She does things like this all of the time. In every way; I aspire to be like her. 

5. What is your life motto? What drives you? “The energy you put into this world is the energy you will get back.”- I tell this to my advisees everyday before they head to their classes for the day. They think I’m saying this to them, which I do; little do they know that, most of the time, I also say it as a reminder to myself!

Luz Elena Angeles Saldana, Senior, Rauner College Prep

1. How would you describe Rauner College Prep? Rauner might be small, but here you can get a great education. Teachers care about their students and always try to find different ways in which the students can improve. What I love the most is that even when some teachers don’t share the same culture or background with the students, they will always try to open their minds to new perspectives/ideas.

2. What is your favorite part about going to school at Rauner?  My favorite part about going to Rauner is that the people working here have never made me feel different about me being an immigrant. Since day one, I’ve always felt accepted by the teachers.

3. What has been your biggest accomplishment so far? My biggest accomplishment so far has been maintaining good grades and being one of the top five of my class. I feel like by accomplishing this, I can proudly represent my community.

4. What is your dream job or dream college? My dream job would definitely be to be part of or to create an organization that focuses on humanitarian and/or climatic crises. I’m really concerned about where our Earth is heading, and I believe every human is somewhat responsible for what happens to our only home and its people. I want to be able to help others as well as the environment because humans depend on the environment and the environment needs humans’ help right now. 

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