Cecilia Ergueta

At Friends since Kindergarten, Cecilia ’18 has interspersed her Humanities studies in California with experiential learning in Germany. After a gap year in Berlin teaching children cooking on a kitchen bus, she entered an intensive program in Classics & Philosophy and designed costumes for the repertory Shakespeare Company during her freshman year at Stanford. When the pandemic moved classes online, she joined a Berlin social enterprise as a Marketing Manager.
How did you choose to move to Berlin during college?
After living within the tight-knit cohort of Stanford’s Structured Liberal Education program, I struggled with the isolating online school format. I spent months applying for jobs from home until I decided to fly to Berlin for an interview-- and wound up getting the job, working in marketing for Germany’s largest neighborhood network. Berlin fascinates me as a city with pulsing potential, where history and ideals spill out into the grungy, patchwork streets. Coming from a year in Silicon Valley, I’m also thrilled to gain first-hand experience in helping my company transition from an investor-backed start-up into a social enterprise serving its community sustainably.

What are your current interests?
I love integrating art and sustainability into my daily routines. I thrift clothes and fabrics to upcycle them into my own designs, sometimes borrowing from vintage styles. I also love taking seasonal vegetables and bringing them to life in different recipes. In a world saturated with information and brimming with “stuff,” I love thinking, “how can I give this new life, new meaning, for myself or others?”

How has WFS impacted or guided you since graduation?
My involvement with Quaker Life while at Friends encouraged me to place the values of stewardship and community front and center in big life decisions. Although a devoted bookworm, I’m currently considering a Master’s in Sustainability Science and Practice, because I believe that my study of history and love of communicating ideas can contribute to the battle for a greener world. I love working for a neighborhood network which gives people the platform to reach out to their local communities and get involved, connecting strangers even in our socially-distanced era.

What are your favorite WFS memories?
As a teacher’s kid, I loved walking around the halls after classes had let out. Teachers’ doors at Friends always seem open to a quick hello or friendly conversation after the busy hubbub of the day! I particularly loved running into Julie Rodowsky, now Head of Lower School but formerly my second grade teacher, who played a big role in fostering my love of reading.

WFS Alumni Spotlights