Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

Tanya Aritao

Activities? I am the coordinator of the International Justice Mission (IJM) at Wheaton, a campus chapter that we put up in the fall of 2008. I’m a member of both the Wheaton College Dance Company and the multicultural dance group, TRYBE. I choreograph for both dance groups. I’m a preceptor, a Davis United World College Scholar, a member of the United World College House, the Christian Fellowship, and a part of the Wheaton College Dance Collective. I also work at the Graphics Design Lab and love to make jewelry.

Why Wheaton? It’s a place where I get to do the things I love all day – like dance, art making or writing. There are so many opportunities for students to grow, explore their passions or discover new interests on their own or alongside friends and peers.

Favorite professor? Julie Searles! I’ve known her since my first semester here and we share many similar passions – dance, the performing arts, justice, social empowerment. She’s very involved on campus, is wonderful to talk to and is so supportive of students!

Leadership. I am the president and executive director of my own non-profit organization based in the Philippines called the Buhay Makulay Children’s Project. We work with youth and children at risk in the urban poor communities through creative programs like fairs and dance workshops.

Most thrilling adventure? Leaving home to study abroad. I was seventeen in 2006 when I left home to study at the United World College in Costa Rica. Living between home and school, which happen to be thousands of miles away, is an exciting and rewarding adventure that isn’t over.