If there’s one thing life has taught me so far, it’s that our experiences and achievements are less about us and are more about the people who have poured time and energy into inspiring us and giving us opportunities.
I grew up in the beautiful city of Lansing with my two siblings and best friends, Caleb and Callie. Because my mom homeschooled us, I had the time to get involved in a lot of extracurricular activities at a young age. She and my dad shoved us outside our comfort zones, and I learned through activities like music, speech and debate, and dramatic productions that if I worked hard I could learn to do anything I set my mind to do.
In high school, I interned with a local political action committee where the leadership taught me by example how important it is to invest in the next generation. Following graduation from high school, I attended Lansing Community College for a year and worked at First National Bank of America, first on their cleaning crew, and then as a real estate sales assistant in their REO department. There, I learned invaluable lessons about work ethic, finances, real estate, marketing, customer service and leadership.
When I transferred to Spring Arbor University the fall of my sophomore year, I learned first hand the incredible impact that community can have on a person. During the first semester, my mom passed away from cancer and I was blown away by the support I received from the entire campus. As I felt the love of the Spring Arbor community, I realized just how grateful I was for all of the people and institutions that had poured into my life. I knew that I wanted to spend my life doing the same for others.
During my junior and senior year, I had the privilege of working as a Peer Advisor to incoming freshmen, and the stories and joy and love of my 29 students completely rocked my world. I learned from them that no matter what pain we experience, no matter the challenges that we face, that faith gives us the courage to press on. Because of the students and faculty at Spring Arbor University, I knew that I wanted to dedicate my life to investing in and helping people the way that others had done for me.
Following graduation from Spring Arbor University, I began a career at an insurance company and I continued to be inspired by the leadership and my fellow associates who work hard each and every day to put lives back together.
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