College Life with Ivan Villanueva


Written by Marie Kane |
Photos by Ivan Villanueva & Marie Kane

Ivan at Middlesex

2017 Morgan graduate Ivan Villanueva goes to Middlesex Community College. He chose Middlesex because it is not far from his house. Ivan was voted most talkative for senior superlatives. He was captain of the football team his senior year and wrestling team in both his junior and senior years, nicknamed, “Big Papi” by his teammates.

He shared a funny moment from high school. “A funny moment in high school is when Jack Holveck, Billdo, and I started bumpin’ ‘Stand By Me’ in the cafe and danced like a bunch of goons.” Ivan continued on to tell his funniest college memory so far which was when his music teacher spent 20 minutes explaining the meaning of the f-word.

Ivan spoke about high school: “Not gonna lie; I do miss high school though. I miss only having to worry about getting the dub that upcoming week.” On the football team, he played left tackle his freshman year, started to practice to play left and right guard sophomore year, right guard on junior year for varsity, and right guard in his senior year.

Ivan at Middlesex

Ivan is majoring in entrepreneurship and describes college as laid back. “My college experience has been manageable. I only take three classes.” He takes English 101, Intro to Essay, and Music History. He is able to do his homework while working retail and doing landscaping with his stepdad. Ivan recommends Middlesex to people who want to work and manage school.

“My favorite part of college is the cafe because their food is fire.” What he dislikes is the students who won’t stop talking after answering a professor or when they interrupt. “It grinds my gears.”

Ivan and Marie Kane at 2017 Graduation

He prefers college over high school because he gets to make money and learn. He was always broke in high school. Business Education teacher Ryan Richitelli had Ivan as a student in his senior year for Entrepreneurship and Personal Finance. He misses him. He described it as “one of a kind” to have Ivan as a student and that “unique” would be one word to describe him. “He always had his own rhythm and opinion and walks to the beat of his own drum.” 

English teacher and Creative Writing teacher Eric Bergman had a lot to share about Ivan. He had him as a student for junior and Senior English and Creative Writing senior year. “Ivan, as many people know, is filled with much energy so as a teacher my job is to direct that energy in the right direction and to understand where Ivan is coming from.” The one word Mr. Bergman used to describe him was dynamic. “I think people that know Ivan know him, and that if he’s going to be around, you could guarantee it’s going to be an exciting time.” Mr. Bergman was most proud of Ivan when he would read his poetry in front of the class.  His poetry had a life to it, a personality to it, and his poetry always was unique. “He’s come so far. He was really struggling his early years with confidence.” Mr. Bergman said that Ivan is “learning on his own what it means to be a man.” He describes Ivan as a wonderful young man. Mr. Bergman said, “I feel I am a better person for knowing him, and I hope he always remembers me fondly.”

Ivan at his graduation

Ivan gave a shoutout to Mrs. Hagness, Mr. Richitelli, and Mr. Bergman, calling Mrs. Hagness “the sweetest woman alive.” To Mr. Bergman, “To my man big berg for always keeping it 1000%. He’s one of the most caring teachers I know.” Then to Mr. Richitelli, “Shoutout to Rich for always being blunt and always telling it like it is.”

Ivan talked about of the teachers here at Morgan, saying, “I love almost all the teachers at Morgan, and I appreciate them helping me make it out of the ‘bubble’ as Mr. Richitelli calls Morgan.”