Originally from Cluj, Transylvania, Romania, Cosmin Tarau loves to travel. He's been to Europe, Asia, and several states in the U.S. He even owns a vacation home in Oahu, Hawaii and a cabin in Wisconsin.
While in high school, Cosmin took one of the most important trips of his life. He moved to Orange County, California to be with his parents, who had moved there six years prior. "I didn't know any English, and I didn't like being there," Cosmin said. "But things fell into place, and I'm really glad that my parents had us come to the U.S., even though we were separated for six years."
Now, Cosmin's parents still live in Orange County, while he moved to St. Paul seven years ago. Cosmin and his wife have been married seven years and have an 11-month-old son named Sam.
This past December, Cosmin got his bachelor's in business management from Metro State University. He is considering getting his master's of business administration from Carlson School of Management.
This past May, Cosmin started working in ASR as a principal collections representative supervisor for Student Account Assistance (SAA).
"This is my first time working at a University and dealing with student debt," Cosmin said. "I work with students to make sure they have money to pay back their loans." Before ASR and his tour in Iraq, Cosmin worked in collections dealing mostly with credit card debt and repossession services.
In his spare time, Cosmin loves to travel, swim, ski, and snowboard. "Now that I have a kid, I spend most of my time taking care of my son," Cosmin said. "But I love doing anything in the water. I grew up in the water." In fact, he has been certified in SCUBA diving since 2007.
Cosmin is also a veteran. He was in the military for six years and did a tour in Iraq for a year as a motor vehicle transportation operator. "When I was deployed overseas, I was in a supervisory role in the military," Cosmin said. "I drove the lead vehicle in a convoy of over 50 trucks."
After being deployed overseas for a year, Cosmin remembers feeling happy to see his family again and incredibly proud of himself. "That first day back in Minnesota was amazing," Cosmin said. "Everyone was greeting us and thanking us for our service. It was a moment that made me proud to be American."
Crux of Cosmin
1. Cosmin's first concert was Coachella.
2. Cosmin swam competitively for more than 12 years.
3. If Cosmin could be any superhero with any superpower, he would be Aquaman, so he could swim fast enough to beat Michael Phelps.
4. His favorite food is Sarma.
5. His dream house is one of the homes off East River Road.
6. His wife attended the U of M and is now a chemical engineer at 3M.
7. His hometown of Cluj is known for having one of the biggest medical schools in Europe.
8. His favorite show is the Simpsons, and he has seen every episode.
9. Cosmin doesn't read unless he has to, but the last book he read was Legends of Olympus, and his favorite book is an insurance law textbook.
10. He dressed as Count Dracula for Halloween one year. "Given my background, it seemed appropriate," he joked.