About Xavier Rene Aleman

The thing about Sage that made it perfect for Xavier Rene Aleman, Xavier says, is that no one ever seemed to say no.

“It was always positive reinforcement. It was, We’ll figure it out.”

So Xavier went for it. Went for it all.

Participated in the Honors Program. Majored in both English and Theatre. Wrote a play, found a place on campus to stage it and then directed it with a fellow student. Took every writing course in the catalog and interned at WOOC 105.3 FM. 

“At first,” Xavier admits, “I wasn’t sure about Sage. I wasn’t sure about myself. Then I fell in love with the place. It became a real home. The teachers were so caring, and it seemed like everyone always had your back.”

“What happens is that you become part of the Sage culture,” Xavier adds, “where it’s about looking out for one another and collaborating.”

But while Xavier says that on the one hand they were encouraged to do whatever they wanted, they were also being grounded.

“I learned about the hardships of the creative life, and how to deal with that,” Xavier says. “I had to work hard to do all that I did, so I learned to work hard.”

At the moment, Xavier is at work on a screenplay and is making plans to apply to the highly-regarded Iowa Writers’ Workshop. To pay the bills, they are selling windows.

Xavier feels confident that one way or another they will accomplish their goal to have a career in the creative world.

They point to Tonya Moutray, a professor of English and Honors Program director, as one of the key figures at Sage who built their confidence and stoked the flames of their ambition. 

“Tonya knows how to push people,” Xavier says. “She sees the positive in someone and brings it out.”

That’s invaluable for someone like Xavier with the mindset of – bring it on!

It became a real home. The teachers were so caring, and it seemed like everyone always had your back.”

Xavier Rene Aleman