Dean Zulueta ’18: Scholarships Made the Difference

By Sharon Arana, Office of Development Communications Posted Fri, 08/25/2017 - 14:03

After creating a successful mobile DJ app in high school, Dean Zulueta knew that San Francisco was the place to launch his career in the music business. USF was his top choice for college.

“There were a couple of other schools, but USF was the one that really spoke to me because of the Jesuit education system,” he said. “Teaching others so that they can go out and teach, and also doing good for the community,” are two ideas that really resonated with him.

He was accepted for the spring semester, and Dean was able to transfer from the University of Nevada, Reno, thanks to the help of scholarships.

“The biggest thing that my scholarship means to me is opportunity. Coming from a small town in Nevada, and now I’m in one of the biggest cities in the country — one of the most forward-thinking cities in the world — it’s amazing that I’m here. I would never think that I would be going to school in San Francisco, let alone at USF.”

First in His Family to Attend College

Dean is part of the Muscat Scholars Program for first-generation college students, an initiative that prepares incoming students for academic success. He is majoring in Business Administration.

Along with his accomplishments in the classroom, Dean’s involvement on campus stands out, too. He has served as president of the Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity, and he is a leader on the Campus Activities Board.

Dean has also followed his passion for music, and he is the production director for the campus radio station, KUSF. He serves key roles at popular campus events, such as Pi Kappa Palooza and Donaroo.

Scholarships made the difference, Dean said, and allow him to be involved in student life at USF. “The fact that I don’t have to worry about whether I can come back to school next semester or if I have enough money to pay for my education is what I’m really grateful for,” he said.

Giving Back

The idea of paying it forward has also had an impact on him, Dean notes, and he would like to develop a way to integrate music with giving opportunities.

One of the projects he worked on at USF was Pi Kappa Palooza, a music festival at the SOMA StrEat Food Park. The fraternity used the $5,000 it raised to help people with disabilities. One idea he has is to create a music festival on the scale of Coachella or EDC, with a goal of making it inclusive and diverse, and using the proceeds to benefit charities.

The success stories of alumni have inspired him, said Dean. “USF has fostered a lot of great people and it’s really inspiring for me to become somebody like the great alumni that we’ve fostered here,” he said. “Everyday I meet somebody, or I hear of somebody, from USF — and that’s really powerful.”

How you can support scholarships