Life of a Brave: Alumni Spotlight With Social Studies Teacher Mr. Mario Cordero

By Oscar Aranda

Students are thrilled to be back at school, but for former St. John Bosco student Mr. Mario Cordero, class of 97’, he’s continued to return for the last 20 years to give back to the Bosco community as one of the campus’ most beloved teachers. 

Photo by Alex Diaz, Photo Editor

Mr. Cordero, a social studies instructor here on campus, attended St. John Bosco from 1993 to 1997. Mr. Cordero had already came from a Catholic school environment before attending Bosco and was accompanied by half a dozen of his closest friends. This allowed him to make the easy transition into Bosco and get involved with the school pretty early. However, as a student, teaching wasn’t always the plan for Mr. Cordero.

“I wanted to be a shortstop for the Dodgers and then I realized that I shouldn’t put all my eggs in that basket. The next thing I would rather do is be a teacher, and I don’t want to do anything else,” said Mr. Cordero.

Mr. Cordero also noted that there are differences between campus from when he was a student and now. He noticed that the campus had more students while he was at Bosco and was a little more wild. For Cordero, campus now has less kids and is a much calmer environment than the Bosco that he attended. Another difference at Bosco was the rule that the students were only allowed to eat by the 400 buildings and were not allowed to use the basketball courts.

Mr. Cordero found a sense of a community while at Bosco and felt that he had found himself at home when he attended school. He found himself back at Bosco when he was hired by his former baseball coach Chris Jondell to help out at Bosco. The fond memories and his time at Bosco as a former student was what made him excited to come back to Bosco as a teacher. Mr. Cordero has been here for 20 years, but feels the persistent need to keep coming back.

“What makes me keep coming back to Bosco is the students and the coworkers for sure. The students we have are really exceptional students that are great young men,” said Mr. Cordero. 

Not only was Bosco a home to Mr. Cordero, but furthermore, an environment in which he felt he belonged. Mr. Cordero was involved in numerous activities here at Bosco including student government, soccer and baseball. Mr. Cordero was also taught by many teachers here on campus that are recognizable for students on campus now. He was taught by Mr. Linares, Mr. Mestas. Mrs. Machado and Mr. Antonelli who are still active teachers here on campus.

Mr. Cordero has also not been the only Cordero to attend Bosco. His two sons, Cruz Cordero, class of 2020, and Santos Cordero, who is currently a sophomore here at Bosco, have been a part of the Bosco experience. Mr. Cordero was adamant that he did not force his kids to come here and wanted to make sure that they knew they were not obligated to come just because he taught here. The decision to come to Bosco was entirely in the hands of Cruz and Santos.

Knowing how hard it is for freshman students, Mr. Cordero left some words of wisdom for current Braves that may be struggling to find themselves here at Bosco.

“There’s a place for you here at Bosco, and if for whatever reason you feel you can’t find your place here, reach out. There are always people here to help you find your place,” said Mr. Cordero.

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