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Loren Vanegas: Finding Success at Georgetown University

LorenWhen she made her decision in the spring of 2020 to attend Georgetown University, Loren Vanegas had high hopes that Covid would wane by the fall, and dreams of attending a top university would play out exactly as envisioned during her years at Cristo Rey Boston.
“In middle school, I had lost sight of my future” Loren reflected, “but as I began my journey at Cristo Rey I started to think differently about my future. I began to focus on what I wanted to do, like study criminal justice. Many teachers and other staff helped me find my passion, aspirations, and my college journey.” Loren reported that CRB staff checked up on her periodically through her first year, helping her navigate financial challenges and offering support.
Despite high hopes of an ideal college experience, Loren’s transition to college ended up being difficult. Like many CRB students, Loren’s family were all diagnosed with Covid during the fall. She recalled, “I had to take on the financial responsibility from a distance (since I am here in DC) because my parents were unable to work. At one point I had three jobs.”
Loren recounted, “As a first-generation low-income student, my fall semester was trial and error, but I also noticed my grades were impacted negatively because I had family responsibilities. I used my winter vacation to reflect on everything that I needed to improve to have a better spring semester, including utilizing office hours more often, joining groups on campus, participating more in class, and creating a team that would support me through my college experience. I have seen that my grades have improved significantly, and I am really enjoying my time here at Georgetown.” Loren is grateful for the support and advice received from the staff at CRB and Georgetown while she navigated her first semester.
During her Corporate Work Study placement at Cristo Rey Boston, Loren worked at Friends of the Children, learning about fundraising. For the following three years, she was placed at Thornton Law Firm. She noted, “During my time at Thorton, I was able to go to a couple of court sessions to witness cross examination and see how it is to be a lawyer. I really enjoyed going to court, serving the defendants, and most importantly, I enjoyed the people that I worked with because of the advice they gave me.”
Loren acknowledged “At first my transition to college was stressful, but as I began my second semester at Georgetown it was more doable, I was familiar with the workload, and I already knew what I needed to do to be successful.” In five years, Loren sees herself with a sociology and computer science degree and working for the police department or a forensics unit. Eventually, Loren aspires to get her Masters, Juris Doctor, and PhD. #CelebrateTheJourney!