Therese Boter

Therese Boter


Photo by Maddy Bunnenberg-Ross


Honolulu, HI





Why did you chose Pitzer?

Pitzer’s core values really stood out to me, especially social responsibility. When I visited Pitzer on the Spring Diversity Program, I realized that I could be around people who were passionate and cared about at least one issue. That’s when I knew that I wasn’t going to just any college, but that I would be going to a place of history with a community of people who cared. That’s why I chose Pitzer – the values, the people, and the overall community.


What is your favorite memory at Pitzer?

As a first-generation, low-income Filipinx student from Hawaii, it was a huge culture shock coming to campus. I remember sitting in my first college class not understanding terms like “inflation” or “GDP” which seemed to be understood by the rest of my peers. It was hard for me to ask for help sometimes, but I did so anyways by going to my professor’s office for advice and guidance. When I told her about my situation as a first-gen student, she looked at me with bright eyes, handed me a pin that says “Proud to be First-Gen”, told me that she was an advocate, and provided me information about resources on campus. After a 10-minute inspirational talk, she went to her white board and said “now let’s talk about inflation.” Not only did this solidify my decision to become an Economics major, but I also realized that I made the right decision to be at Pitzer.


What is one of the most important lessons you’ve learned while at Pitzer?

Through my classes and the community here, I have learned to always remain critical of everything ranging from the material we read and hear, to the subtle forms of power that continue to dominate and oppress certain groups within society.


What are your post-Pitzer plans?

I will be heading to Salt Lake City, UT to start my career as a full-time analyst at Goldman Sachs. Apart from hiking, rock-climbing, and camping, I am most excited about getting involved with the local communities there. While I don’t know what the future has in store for me, I hope to eventually invest my time into starting a nonprofit, particularly within education and college access, because I seriously would not be here without the support of organizations that helped me like the Leadership Enterprise for a Diverse America!


What do you think makes Pitzer special?

Pitzer is not your average college. Our core values are embedded throughout the entire campus, which you’ll see through the student body, extracurricular activities, and academics. We are an open campus that allows students to take initiative and voice demands we believe in fighting for, often times in collaboration with staff here as well.


What is your favorite place on campus? Why?

The Center for Asian Pacific American Students (CAPAS) has always been a place that I call home since my first semester at Pitzer! It might have to do with their comfy couches, television, kitchen, and free printing…but it is most definitely the people there that have given me a sense of belonging.


Do you have any words of advice for current/admitted students?

When you’re deciding on which college to attend, first ask yourself: what does college mean to me? This will shape your understanding of what you want your college experience to be and how you want to feel supported there. From there, you can decide which community will help you facilitate that growth and provide you with experience you want our of your next four valuable years.


What else would you like to share about your experience at Pitzer?

I have truly enjoyed my time at Pitzer having realized that I could make a difference in my own way here on campus. My involvement with CAPAS and APAC (Asian Pacific American Coalition) allowed me to grow as a leader and a mentor through my various roles. While I may not always be loud or extroverted as leaders are often deemed to be, my experience here has given me an opportunity to show that titles do not necessarily make leaders, but rather working within my own community and investing my energy (while maintaining self-care!) into the people around me.