Andreas’ Unique Student Mix at Menlo, 1986

Most students don't get the opportunity to experience Menlo College in the myriad of ways Andreas P. Strieve L&S, CIS /SBA '86/'90 did. He has managed to remain in the Bay Area after his graduation from the Menlo SBA program and now owns Gallery M in Half Moon Bay, CA, which is best described as the West Coast's premier wood furniture gallery.

In the mid-70's, he lived in Thailand for six years, graduating from the International School Bangkok, Thailand's only international school, with inspired students, inspired teaching and a vast range of international students. The student body, made up of 1200 students from kindergarden to 12th grade, represented 58 different nationalities–a very multicultural upbringing in a South East Asian country. After going through the usual application processes to colleges, via Thailand, Menlo College ended up being the choice he made. After high school graduation, he briefly visited his Austrian home base before it was off to California, a state and country he had never been to before.

A Well-Rounded Experience… and a Mentor

Andreas would probably describe his Menlo education as “global, eclectic and comprehensive, a total, well-rounded experience”–a few words that come to mind, given Menlo's “unique student mix.” In the early eighties Menlo was made up of 24% foreign students who, for the most part, lived on campus . This was a plus for a 17 year old foreign student who was trying to fit in. A network of like-minded peers to help through the initial stages of adapting to college life was quickly formed. As a member of Carlos López's highly successful Menlo soccer team from the mid-80's, he gained an even larger friend and support group and also a mentor whom he holds in great esteem and admiration. Carlos was always there for his players as a mentor, coach, and someone to provide help and support in every way he could, often far above the call of duty. Each year, Andreas returns to campus to play in the Carlos López Memorial Soccer Tournament to honor his mentor and dear friend. Coach López also played a large part in his decision to declare Computer Information Science as his major.

In his sophomore year, he was able to land a job as Resident Advisor, a job he retained for 3 years. Working in student life gave the entire college experience yet another twist. Now getting to know students was a job necessity. After another year of international friendships, soccer buddies and many names and faces to get to know, Andreas eventually felt confident that he knew more than 60% of the students by name. He also worked for buildings and ground for a summer, giving him an even more in-depth connection to how the College really operates. Andreas naturally saw the campus as a mini-global environment, not at all boring, where his education meant being exposed to a diverse array of ideas, cultures, lifestyles and values. Because of his involvement with the many parts of Menlo, he was selected to be on the list of Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities in 1985. He learned a lot about diplomatically handling many social interactions on the soccer field, as well as the dorms and in open academic discourse. He belonged to Alpha Kappa Psi, a business fraternity.

Continuing His Education

After his graduation in 1986, he returned to his homeland and ended up running mainframes for a living, a job that he left behind 18 months later to return to Menlo to complete his BA degree. Not working and being able to concentrate on his studies without athletics or residential life interfering, was a new chapter for him too. Going to class now seemed a much more enjoyable thing to do. Getting up in the morning and getting to learn something new seemed truly a gift. Exploring what the greater Bay Area had to offer was a higher priority, since the awareness of what had been taken for granted in the past was something that could now be explored more thoroughly. He eventually obtained his MBA from Golden Gate University.

Considering the timeless nature of the Menlo Advantage, Andreas Strieve serves as a model of the international student who arrives on campus and makes a world of difference to everyone he meets.