13 Mar Alumni Board Scholar Profile: Q&A with 2015 scholar Suraj Renganathan
Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Gergana Kostadinova.
Scholar Year: 2015
Hometown: Fort Collins
College(s), Degree(s): University of Denver, International business and public policy/leadership
What are you currently interested in pursuing after graduating?
I am currently considering several different options upon graduation. On one hand, I would like to pursue a career in government relations and serve as a liaison between the public and private sector. Specifically, I would like to perform economic and market research in investment or corporate banking, thereby functioning as an advisor for policymakers, other businesses, and interest groups. However, I am also considering applying for post-graduate fellowships and pursuing a master’s degree abroad.
Tell us about what activities, groups, and/or organizations you have joined in college and why you joined them.
Rather than focusing on a few activities and going “all in,” I have always preferred to involve myself in a wide variety of pursuits. Right now, I am the president of the University of Denver Roosevelt Institute, which is an undergraduate policy think-tank. The Roosevelt Institute attempts to promote a cause dear to me, namely youth engagement in politics. In addition, I am also a research assistant at the Pardee Center for International Futures. Perhaps one of my more “surprising” extracurricular endeavors is acapella, where I sing bass and beatbox for the DU Idiosingcrasies.
Tell us about an important mentor you have had.
Probably the most significant mentor I have had in my life was my AP U.S. history teacher, Ms. Matthie. Not only was her class my favorite course throughout high school, but Ms. Matthie played an important role in shaping my goals and ambitions. She instilled in me a confidence to stretch myself beyond my comfort zone and tackle issues which initially seem daunting. Though I am now a couple of years removed from high school, I still consider Ms. Matthie to be a strong influence in my life.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Regardless of what you achieve, always remain humble. This saying, which was constantly repeated to me by my mother throughout my life, is the most meaningful piece of advice I have received. It serves as a personal reminder to avoid the pitfalls of complacency or arrogance. Despite whatever successes I may have gained, this piece of advice helps to keep me grounded. It also functions as a motivator to constantly try and improve myself and not feel satisfied with the status-quo.
If you could have dinner with one person or a few people from history, whom would you choose and why?
Ronald Reagan and Alexander Hamilton. Reagan because “The Gipper” was a transformational figure in American history and Hamilton because Lin-Manuel Miranda can spit some serious rhymes about our founding fathers!