Finding Success From an Uncertain Beginning

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As an Illinois Tech student, Oscar Cazalez had the opportunity to get involved in many student programs, including Latinos Involved in Further Education, Undocumented Students and Allies, men’s varsity soccer, and Stuart Investments.

He interned as a credit analyst for Chicago Fundamental Investment Partners and went on to earn his master’s degree from the internationally ranked finance program at Stuart School of Business as part of Illinois Tech’s accelerated master’s degree program.

“Deciding to pursue a master’s degree in finance was probably the best decision I could have made, not only because of the rigors of the courses, but also because I have met so many people along the way,” Cazalez says. “Having two degrees under my belt opens more doors, some doors that I didn’t even know existed.”

Cazalez faced challenges along the way, none bigger than simply getting accepted into a university—not because he didn’t meet the academic requirements, but because of his immigration status.

“The realization of the impacts that my immigration status would have on my life could have stopped me from pursuing my goals,” he says. “Instead it solidified my determination to succeed and support others in my community.”