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UCM alum credits lasting impact of programs

I attended Western Michigan University where I received my B.S. in exercise science in 2009. It is also where I participated in two programs offered by United Campus Ministry: Bible Study and Alternative Spring Break.

Both experiences left a lasting impact on my life and have helped to shape the direction that it has gone. Bible Study helped me to not only learn more about the Bible, but how it applies to my life. It wasn’t the “typical” Bible study. There were open discussions about the passages and ideas presented, and as students we were challenged to look at what we learned from a critical viewpoint.

The experience was not just sitting back and listening to someone preach. It was challenging, both mentally and emotionally.

Being involved in the Bible Study led me to go on an Alternative Spring Break, I wanted to have an experience where I was able to go see a new place as well as help other people out. We painted a house for men who had just gotten out of prison, learned about the AIDS problem in Washington D.C., and gave books to kids at an elemen-tary school. It was an eye opening opportunity.

The experience of spending my time volunteering, coupled with what I learned at Bible Study, helped me to and got married. My wife and I decided to join the Peace Corps where we are now serving as community health volunteers in a rural community in the coun-try of Swaziland. We are working on projects that focus on improving nutrition and sanitation, preventing teen pregnancy and HIV, and teaching better financial practices.

Participating in those UCM programs changed the way that I look at life and helped to open doors such as the Peace Corps. I am extremely glad that I took the opportunity to participate in the programs offered, they opened doors and enriched my life.

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