Eller Bonifacio - UND Spotlight
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What do you do when you live in the Philippines, enjoying mostly nice weather, diverse culture, and a great cuisine influenced by Spanish, Japanese, and American dishes? You move to Grand Forks, N.D. For Eller Bonifacio, it was one of the best decisions he ever made.
Growing up in Angeles City, Pampanga, Bonifacio has always been fond of technology. The decision to attend the University of North Dakota was influenced by relatives in Grand Forks. Emanuel Grant, his uncle, teaches in UND’s Computer Science Department and is also its graduate program director.
Another advantage of the United States, particularly Grand Forks, was the residents. “People are warm,” Bonifacio said. After settling in and getting used to his new environment, he observed, “Professors are very open and casual, and you are free to express yourself here.”
Bonifacio has a passion and fascination for technology. Upon arrival, he jumped right into anything he could get his hands on. Serving as the graphics, web, and marketing coordinator for the Feast of Nations, a cultural event presented by the International Organization, Bonifacio aided in promoting and advertising for this 49th annual event. “It sends a big message that UND supports other cultures and diversity,” he observed.
Bonifacio is the vice president of the Graphics and Photography Society, and a member of the Asian Student Association. He also works on graphics, web sites, and publications for the Study Abroad Program, the School of Engineering and Mines, and the Wellness Center. “Ever since high school, managing time has been my strong suit, but school comes first. If it didn’t, I would lose my visa,” he said.
Bonifacio first came to UND for computer science and then switched his major to graphic design, which he credits as his greatest experience. Bonifacio plans to pursue a career with a corporate Midwest company in the United States, preferably in the marketing industry. “Since switching, I have been able to show my talents in the real world, and I am now confident that I can be successful,” he said.
- Nick Farstveet