Consumer Lending · February 2, 2023

Spring Mandujano

Spring Mandujano

Spring Mandujano was named after an old Tanya Tucker song her mother liked. She grew up in Northern Illinois in the city of Rockford. “My parents traveled a lot for work,” she shared. “My dad was a diesel mechanic all around the Midwest, and my mom was a CNA. In 1989 we came back to Illinois, and we have been here since.”

Spring went to Harlem High School in Machesney Park and moved out from her parents’ home when she was 18. “My gap year turned into a gap century,” Spring said smiling. She did continue with school “super part-time,” she explained. “I was working and going to school and raising a family.”

Spring started out studying business but said she found it “really boring.” She switched to computer science and said, “No. I’m done with this too.” She then changed directions to health care. Spring became a certified phlebotomist. She shared that since the age of five, she had wanted to be a doctor but after considering the amount of debt and her family responsibility, health care wasn’t going to work for her either. After a little self-reflection, Spring decided that she would work towards becoming an Internal Auditor and decided to take Accounting in business. “I have an indecisive mind,” Spring shared and laughed. “I get bored easily.”

Through the diversity of her work, Spring did earn an associate degree at the Rock Valley College, but has been in banking since she was 20 years old. She has held a variety of positions from teller to supervisor to loan officer. When coming to MCU, she shared that she was ready for a change. “It gave me the warm fuzzies,” Spring said of the stories she heard of people getting the help they needed at MCU. “It fills my bucket to hear stories from people you help and how other people have helped their members.” Before MCU, “I was at my wits’ end. I just needed a change and something to make me happy again.”

She shared that she fell in love with the people at MCU who interviewed her. “They were so nice, it was impossible to say no,” she added with a smile. So, in April of 2021, Spring started her career at MCU as a Consumer Loan Officer.

“It’s going good,” she added. “You must find creative, and out of the box ways to lend. Members’ profiles have complexities.” She said her work now helps her from getting bored.” My brain is always working.”

Outside of work, Spring shared that she channels any boredom with crocheting, and learning to cook creatively. “I’m trying to become a domestic goddess,” she said and laughed. Spring also is learning to play the acoustic drums and has two sets in her home. She played the guitar in high school but shared that playing drums was one of the few things she always wanted to do.

“In school, I highly recommend everyone take Philosophy and Introduction to American Music,” Spring said as it was one of her favorite classes while earning her undergraduate degree. “I learned about jazz, zydeco, slave, screamo, electronic, noise, and classical music … where music came from and how it came to fruition.” Her studies in American music, she said, “opened a door” for her.

Is she good at the drums? “I’m okay,” she shared. “It takes years. I just play for myself for now,” she added and smiled.

In addition to drums and her crocheting, Spring also shared she is an avid reader and likes to figure out how things work, which is what drew her to auditing and accounting. “When I was a little girl, I was always outside, and my dad would be out in the driveway working on a car. I was right there with him. I learned how to work on cars at a very young age and have passed this on to my kids. I never want them to feel helpless.”

Spring has three children, Carlee (22), Vincent (20) and her youngest is Dominick (15). She has been with her “significant other,” Michael, for “it seems like 50 years, we joke about that all the time.” Even now, you can find Spring and Michael out in their heated garage flipping cars together.

“You have to make yourself happy,” Spring said. “A lot of people are fearful of missing out. I have a fear of too many options, and not enough at the same time. In philosophy, there is this description of a life, “The Allegory of a Cave.” It’s a theory on human nature and its comforts. The prisoners are tied/shackled to a wall. They are always staring at the wall. When they escape and go out into the world, there are too many options, and they get scared so they go back to the environment they were used to and live the rest of their days there. You can get out, but you always go back because that is all you know,” she explained. “I don’t want to stay stagnant. I don’t want to be that prisoner in a cave,” Spring added. “That’s why I go outside of my comfort box, I make the choice and go for it. I’ve been told I’m brave,” she continued. “Am I scared, absolutely! I know I’m going to fail, but I want the opportunity to fail.”