When Andrew Blake '99 arrived as a freshman, he was invited to serve others, and Totino-Grace inspired him to say yes, over and over again. As a result, Andrew has developed into a man of uncommon faith, leadership, and character. Today, he's leading the programs that have inspired so many Totino-Grace students to serve and grow.
After an upperclassman invited him to help paint a house as part of a service project, Andrew soon became actively involved in the Lasallian Youth program, volunteering on a regular basis and eventually participating in two mission trips. He traveled to a middle school in Chicago (San Miguel) and to Guatemala, where he helped rebuild homes while learning about the nature and effects of poverty. At graduation, he was named the Christian/Lasallian Man of the Year by virtue of his leadership, faith, and service, qualities he continued to build on at St. Mary's University.
At St. Mary's, Andrew was the coordinator for the Peace and Justice Forum, hosting speakers and dialogues that attracted hundreds of students. He traveled to Guatemala for a semester to help coordinate volunteers in San Lucas Toliman, a village stricken with poverty. After graduation, Andrew joined the Lasallian Volunteers, serving for two years at a high school that stands in the shadow of the Maryland State Penitentiary in an impoverished neighborhood of Baltimore.
Andrew returned to Totino-Grace three years ago to lead and expand on the same Lasallian Youth programs and mission trips that had such a deep impact on his own growth and development. "My role is to encourage students to respond to the same invitation I received as a freshman and, in turn, to extend that invitation to others."