Alexander Stephan Torres ’22

portrait of a student tour guide


Pronouns: he/him, they/them

Home Town: San Jose, California

How long have you been walking backwards, leading campus tours? 

Since Fall 2019

Majors: International Relations, and Sociology—Organizational Studies

What is your favorite thing about UC Davis?

Honestly, it’s the people. From the faculty to the students, all are dipped in a new coat of kindness that makes the campus feel like a space where I can find my community so easily. The love and warmth I feel, even going into my third year, has not changed nor morphed in any way.

How did you find friends and get involved?

As a freshman I first bonded and got to know my fellow floormates in the residence halls, resulting in friendships I still value now that I am a third year and fully moved out of the dorms. Then I joined some student organizations (we have 800+!) and met even more people who were not only from incredibly rich backgrounds but were extremely kind as well. Some of the clubs I decided to stay in, and I have even become an officer for! Then I started to get involved with the cultural and support centers on campus and fell in love with the Cross Cultural Center, a place that welcomes my mixed heritage and allows me to explore activism and academic justice in a variety of ways. 

What was the most surprising thing you discovered?

I was surprised at the amount of free food that is made available to students because of all the farms nearby. I am so grateful, because coming from a home where food wasn't available all the time, UC Davis does its absolute best to make sure that the students off and on campus are able to find not only free but nutritious meals as well. The Pantry (run by students, for students) has become my best friend as a local resource to get free food that makes food insecurity a thing of the past, at least in Davis.

Who has been your favorite professor so far?

It’s hard for me to say, because I have had so many kind, endearing and thoughtful professors who are both knowledgeable of the material and accommodating for the students. But my favorite professor so far has been Dr. Maxine Craig. She has been kind and extremely caring not only toward the students but also toward the subjects that she teaches.

What’s been a challenge you’ve overcome at UC Davis?

I had to get over being homesick, mainly because I missed my siblings. What helped me get over that was focusing on making my new home in Davis, and once I was able to find my community, it helped me realize that I am in college for my personal growth, and what is personal growth without leaving home? In order for us as human beings to become fully independent, we must know what it means to leave our parents and still help them grow as well.