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My Manchester Story

  • Gracianne Nohl
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Mar 16, 2023

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Gracianne Nohl (she/her/hers) and I am a second-year Digital Media Arts major from Johnsonville, Wisconsin.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am an RA in Garver. I have two on-campus jobs, I working for Cordier crew and the in Funderburg Library. I am also an active member of Manchester University's Theatre Society. 

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I chose Manchester University because it was a smaller campus that offered a major that fit my interests. I was also impressed with the study abroad program when I toured.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    My favorite thing about Manchester is Theatre Society. It is a student-run club that puts on productions. It gives so many opportunities to act, write, perform, and create. I love having a creative outlet on campus and getting to work with amazing individuals. 

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I could see myself either working as a social media coordinator or pursuing a film degree.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    I love all of the communications and art department professors, I don't think I could pick a favorite!

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    My favorite class I have taken is Typography with Ejenobo Oke. I learned valuable graphic design skills and how to apply creativity to a professional setting. 

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    I would love to take part in the May Day tricycle race (and hopefully win)! 

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Be social and get involved earlier rather than later. Most of the connections you make are through small moments or random coincidences so it's important to come to campus with a positive attitude and open mind. Also, check out Theatre Society!

    What is something someone wouldn't know just by looking at you?

    I used to raise pigs for my county 4-H club.

    What is your favorite Manchester memory?

    My favorite Manchester memory was May Day weekend my freshman year. I remember spending hours in the PERC setting up for the air bands and drag show. It was gratifying to help run events that the whole campus can be a part of! There's so many fun events (like mud volleyball) and the weather was beautiful.

  • Renae Walker-Zamora
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Mar 07, 2023

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Renae Walker-Zamora (she/her/hers). I am a junior General Music and Educational Studies: Concentration in Counseling Major, and I am from Austin, Texas!

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am currently a member of both choral organization groups - A Cappella Choir (Vice-president) and Chamber Singers. I have also been a part of Campus Interfaith Board for the past three years now, and I am also the music coordinator in the Chapel.

    Other clubs: Theatre Society (Treasurer), Artists Anonymous (President & Historian), Manchester's Aspiring Educators (Activities Coordinator) and the National Association for Music Educators (Secretary).

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I found Manchester University through a high school college program called AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination). It was a program that allowed you to look for colleges and scholarships online every week.

    I chose Manchester University because I wanted to be a part of a small/private university. In Texas, many colleges are usually public and big. I also wanted to pick a school that fitted well with my financial needs. Manchester University offered many grants and scholarships to me that I am forever grateful for. I will admit that I had a love-hate relationship with the idea of traveling all the time from Texas to Indiana, but I have enjoyed traveling so much and being in a new environment. Fun Fact, when I got here this was the very first time I saw SNOW! This was also my first time seeing black squirrels. (Very interesting!)

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    What I love about Manchester is that there are many opportunities for you to be involved. There are so many clubs and organizations on campus, and I think it's great that people are even allowed to create their own clubs that fit them best. Everyone on campus is very welcoming, friendly and helpful. It's great feeling comfortable on campus when you are so far away from home.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I plan to continue my education in graduate school after Manchester. I want to become a music therapist! Right now, I am looking into two-year music therapy equivalent programs that allow you the qualifications to become board certified. After a few years, I may go back and get my master’s. I would love to work with patients in hospitals that fall under all treatments, kids with disabilities or addiction/rehab centers. I have also been looking into settings for the military - people who might suffer with PTSD or might be wounded. I have a big heart for helping people, and I found music therapy to be so fitting for me. Music is very healing for everyone! 

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    This is a tough question! I love the Music Department here and they have all been so supportive and helpful throughout my years at Manchester. They are all special to me in their own way. I love how they are all supportive academically but also on a personal level. They take the time to understand me and get to know me. They see me as someone special and not as a number. I think that is want makes this department so great is that it feels like having a second family here.

    If I had to pick one professor though, it would definitely be Robert Lynn (Doc Rob). He never gives me problems simply because he is always in his own bubble and never really talks to me. He just smiles at me in the hallway and teaches me whatever I need to know. What a man!

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    Out of all my music classes it would have to be my private voice and piano lessons. I have also enjoyed taking basic conducting with Debra Lynn and Mason Kniola! I enjoyed these classes because it allowed to step out of my comfort zone and figure out what works best for me. It allowed me to figure my own styles as a musician and what makes me unique. If I had to pick a class outside my music courses, it would have to be my African American Literature class with Dr. Beate Gilliar or my Racial, Ethnic and Gender Inequality class with Dr. Alicia Dailey. 

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    I would like to help organize an event on campus with the Manchester Activities Council. Out of all the clubs I have been in, I been wanting to collaborate with MAC for quite a while since I have enjoyed all the activities they have put on at Manchester.

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    If you are struggling academically or mentally, get help! There is always someone there for you on campus. We have very supportive counselors on campus and people from the Bowen Center that come in to talk with you if you need it. There are also many wonderful professors on campus who are willing to listen. You are not alone, and you matter to the world!

    Another thing is, make sure you are majoring in something that you want to do. Don't allow people to speak for you, if it something you love, then go for it. I have changed my major three times because it took me forever to figure out what I wanted, or I had people telling me what to do. Or I was holding myself back because I was worried for being judged or not being successful in the future right away. If you put in the work, think ahead and do your best, I promise you will be all right!

    What is something someone wouldn't know just by looking at you?

    I used to be a dancer when I was a kid, I had a huge interest in volleyball, and I was adopted when I was 13 years old.

    What is your favorite Manchester memory?

    My favorite memory would have to be singing at Carnegie Hall in New York with the A Cappella Choir. It was an experience I will never forget. I have also enjoyed being a part of the past two opera workshops with Debra Lynn. This was my first time being introduced to opera. and I have learned so much and made wonderful friends. 

  • Sophie Updike
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Feb 27, 2023

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Sophie Updike (she/her). I'm an Elementary Education with Mild Intervention major and a minor in History. I am a junior, and I'm from Huntington, Ind.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am the vice president of Manchester Aspiring Educators. I am also a student worker for the Education Department. 

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I chose MU for two big reasons: it offered the best financial aid to help me achieve my goals, and it had a small academic community. Financial aid was super important to me because I am a first-generation college student. A small community with a shared purpose was important to me because I wanted to be able to connect with others in my major and with my professors. 

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    I love how close you feel to your major and your chosen field! With small classes, I've had a great relationship with all my professors. It feels easy to ask questions and get answers when something is confusing or difficult. I also feel that the courses and clinical experiences I've had have been intentional in design, which, as an education major, is super important to me. 

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I plan on teaching at the elementary level and entering law school after graduating from MU. It's my hope to become an advocate for children who are unable to advocate for themselves, especially within special education. All children deserve the right to an education, and not all children are given the opportunity to get the most from their education. I want to become someone who can facilitate change within education to make it more accessible and equitable. 

    Who is your favorite professor?

    Dr. Stacy Stetzel, for sure! Her classes always have lots of energy, and we always have conversations about real-world issues that teachers face in the classroom. She never teaches directly from a textbook and her lectures are not typical lectures, which makes class fly by.

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    I couldn't pick a favorite class, but I can say that EDUC 340 (or LitBlock) is going to be a great class! Learning how to teach kids how to read is something I've been anticipating since freshman year!

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    Studying abroad! I got to travel to London during the last January session, and it was one of the best experiences I've ever had!

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Do the reading and ask questions. No one ever does the reading for classes, and it shows when you can't participate in class. I've found that you get the most out of classes when you already can participate in discussions, and you gain that ability by doing the readings. Asking questions is so important! Having the confidence to say, "I don't understand. Please help me to." is the most important thing for someone who is trying to better themself. The professors here make it so easy to ask questions, and when you take advantage of that, you set yourself up to do great things!

    What is something someone wouldn't know just by looking at you?

    I am not a super creative person, but art is one of my favorite things! Literature, paintings, sculpture, music and everything in between! If I'm not doing homework or working, I'm reading a new book, listening to music or finding something creative to focus my energy on. 

    What is your favorite Manchester memory?

    My clinical experience last semester was truly something I'll never forget. I taught my very first lesson over adverbs, and I created a game for my class to play that included their names along with little things I remembered about my students. When they realized what I had done, the look on their faces was the single most impactful moment of my time in that classroom. They were elated that I remembered that someone liked to draw and someone else liked to read books about football. It really settled my decision to become a teacher for me, and I can't wait to have more moments like that.

  • Diana Nettleton
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Feb 20, 2023

    It was a warm August day in 1989 when my Manchester journey began. I am from the very small town of Talma, Ind. I was pretty sure that I did not want to go to a large college – after all, I would probably get lost. I knew I wanted to be an elementary school teacher and needed a degree to have that career.


    It was here that I began a journey to being a teacher – a teacher who is equipped to change the world! In my very first semester of college, I was in the classroom! Manchester gave me teaching experience and room to grow my talents throughout my undergraduate journey. I keep using the word journey because that was what the Manchester experience was for me, a journey in my career choice and my personal life too.


    I met my future husband, Matt, here at Manchester. We decided to live in North Manchester largely because of the small-town culture filled with entire-world experiences. My journey led me to Manchester College, and I am who I am in large part because of that warm day in August 1989.

  • Cole Nugent
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Feb 16, 2023

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Cole Nugent (He/Him), I am majoring in Accounting and Finance, and I am from Westport, IN.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am the Vice President of MAC as well as the student representative of the VIA Committee!

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I chose Manchester because I started my college journey looking to gain a pharmacy degree, however, once I realized that was not my true passion, I found a home in the Gilbert College of Business!

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    After Manchester, I plan to go into the residential accounting department of Thompson Thrift Development!

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    It's a tie between Dean Twomey and Jen Lutz! 

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Don't be afraid to make mistakes! College is the safest place to find ourselves and make mistakes. The amazing resources at Manchester are going to be able to guide and help you in any way possible!

  • Rahmon "RJ" James
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Feb 06, 2023

    Tell us about yourself!

    I am Rahmon James (RJ) and my pronouns are he/him/his. I am a senior majoring in business management from South Bend, IN. 

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am a student ambassador for the College of Business.

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    Manchester reminded me of my hometown: very small, everything close together, and not far from each other. Manchester showed so much love to me since my visit here back in 2019. I thought “why not?” and coming from where I’m from, it is extremely hard to find motivation other than just sports. I had two knee surgeries before I looked at colleges and was unable to take the SAT test. I saw Manchester was a test-optional school and that was another sign to choose this university. 

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    Being so close to everything, making friends, and being able to experience new classes in areas you haven’t explored before. 

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I see myself being a Sales Representative at TQL (Total Quality Logistics) and a personal trainer. 

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    My favorite professors have been Messer, Ogden, and McGrady.

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    My favorite class was Introduction to Social Work.

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    I want to participate in May Day activities!

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Stay true to yourself and know that some things don’t happen overnight. It is okay to fail!

    What is something someone wouldn't know just by looking at you?

    I’m flexible! It may seem weird after having three knee surgeries because you wouldn’t expect me to be flexible. 

    What is your favorite Manchester memory?

    Hanging with my bros and being able to create a bond with them! 

  • Adrian Allen
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Jan 30, 2023

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Adrian Allen (He/Him), my major is educational studies, and I am from Stone Mountain, GA.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am the Captain of Valorant Team (Esports), an RA, and President of the Manchester University Gaming Society.

    Why do you enjoy playing on the Valorant team?

    It's given me a place where I can be myself and grow into something better. I've gotten so many opportunities, like speaking to the board of trustees or casting in front of more than a hundred people. 

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    Manchester was a last-minute decision for me. I ended up going here completely by chance.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    My favorite thing about Manchester is the community.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I see myself joining the peace corps, joining the JET program, and teaching English abroad.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    My favorite professor is Stacy Stetzel.

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    Cinema for Social Change with Johnathan Watson has been my favorite class at Manchester. 

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    I would really like to play mud volleyball.

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Make sure that you get involved and try your best to make it a fun time.

    What is something someone wouldn't know just by looking at you?

    I am working on being able to speak three languages fluently.

    What is your favorite Manchester memory?

    My favorite Manchester memory would be one of the playoffs trips that I took with our esports team. Being able to compete, and watching everyone else try their best, is really inspiring and pushes me to be the best possible version of myself.

  • Travis Adkins
    by User Not Found | Jan 24, 2023

    Travis Adkins ’14, Senior Admissions Counselor from Mexico, IN

    “What brought you to Manchester?”
    “During the college process, I was between two schools, Manchester and Purdue. I had my heart set on Purdue, and I actually took some classes there when I was younger, like in middle school, they had some for younger kids and I was set on that. It sounds really corny, but I came and met with Admissions here at Manchester because I felt like Purdue was just a little too big and I just felt like a number. So I came and met with Brandi, which is surreal now because she’s my boss. I took the campus tour and just fell in love with it. I met Marci [Coulter-Kern] my very first time here and she sold me on the Psych department, and the rest is history.”

    “What did you do after graduation?”
    “I actually went and managed a Kroger for a while. I worked at Kroger in different roles during my time at Manchester, then went a little farther into it afterwards for 2-3 years after graduation, then came back in January for Admissions. I always feel like it’s coming back home, because I liked it here, and it’s a good place to work.”

    “What was your favorite class?”
    “My favorite professor was Rusty Coulter-Kern. He was never my advisor, but he always had the fatherly feel and always seems to look out for me and give me advice on which paths to take, and really made me feel invested in my growth and potential. My favorite class was probably ‘Introduction to European History’ with Mark Angelos. It was super intense, I remember really cramming for it, but for some reason it was just so much fun. He made me want to go to those places in Europe that we learned about.”

    “What kinds of things are you involved in on campus?”
    “This year, I will be the lead of the Spartan Ambassadors, so I’m super excited about that. It’s kind of part of my job, but it’s a special little spot. I just recently realized we’re going to be working on the Walk Into My Future event, which is just crazy to me, so that’s pretty exciting. We’re going to have a thousand extra students than we did last year, so that’s pretty fun to work on. I’m working on my Master’s in Organizational Leadership so that takes a lot of time too.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?”
    “I like to travel, I’m a Netflix binger, and I have a seven-month-old puppy—a chocolate lab named Cooper—so he takes up a lot of my time. It’s lame to say the Master’s stuff, but that really does take up a lot of my time. I’m also really into farmers’ markets. When I was in high school I worked at an apple orchard, so I like that kind of stuff. I like making people laugh, not really like, ‘Do you have any jokes?’ … no, but just how I present my life makes people laugh.”

    “Do you have a favorite place you’ve traveled to?”
    “As far as at Manchester, I did go to Disney with the Coulter-Kerns in the Industrial-Organizational class. I sat with Marci on a plane for two hours, and I dumped her tea all over the floor within the first ten minutes. This was before take-off, and I was like, ‘I think I just kicked this over,’ because she had it on the ground, and I’m like ‘Oh… no. That sucks.’ As far as outside, last year I actually had the opportunity to go to Hawaii twice, which was kind of nuts, and I went with myself, which people think is crazy, because it’s like 5,000 miles away, and just did some sight-seeing.  I didn’t have a plan going so it was neat to just explore, and what things came up, I did, so that’s probably my favorite trip. It’s super cool and I highly recommend it.”

    “Do you have a favorite memory from your time at Manchester?” 
    “This is one that I kind of relate to people and Admissions. A lot of people get worked up if they don’t get into the [residence] halls they like. I always like to say to my prospective students, ‘I lived in Oakwood, I was fortunate enough to start off there. But I would go to Schwalm, and that’s where I was at almost all the time, because that’s where my friends were.’ So I think just the late nights, not really doing anything, just talking and hanging out. As far as a cool opportunity, I was actually able to present my psychology [research] at a national conference, and I got a scholarship grant from Psi Chi to go on the travel grant, so it was free. So we went to Chicago and presented at the Midwestern Psychological Association meeting, so that was exciting with schools around the country that were able to present their work.”

    “What is something most people don’t know about you?”
    “When I was growing up, like in elementary school, I used to write horror stories. When I was little, they were kind of gruesome. I remember in first grade, I wrote a story named ‘Jeremiah and the Bear’ and my best friend was named Jeremiah, and I had him eaten by a bear! We had to make books with construction paper, and you had to do drawings of it. I was in first-grade!”

  • Mason Kniola
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Jan 23, 2023

    Tell us about yourself

    My name is Mason Kniola (He/Him/His), and I am a senior vocal performance major from Carmel, Indiana.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    Any and all music groups - A Cappella Choir (president and student conductor), Chamber Singers, Handbell Choir (President), Manchester University Spartan Pride (President), Jazz Ensemble (bassist), Manchester Symphonic Orchestra (student conductor and tubist), Manchester Symphonic Band (tubist), Music Department Student Assistant, Basic Conducting TA

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I chose Manchester University because of how welcoming the music department was from day one and the campus size. The campus and the music department were suitable sizes for me. Not too big and not too small.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    My favorite thing about Manchester University is all the wonderful opportunities I have received within the music department. Despite its small size, they strive to let students meet world-renowned artists and professionals in our field where we can get more personal interaction with them and unique performance opportunities that directly impact local communities.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I plan to continue my education at the graduate level after Manchester. I am looking to obtain a Master of Music in Orchestral Conducting.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    The entire music department faculty and staff. If I had to pick one, it would be either Debra Lynn or Pam Haynes. They have both molded, supported, and challenged me and my values. I would not be half the person I am today without them or the music department.

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    Despite my love for the music department, my favorite class I have taken at Manchester is either my intro to philosophy class or my introduction to political science class.

    What's a Manchester bucket list item you'd like to check off?

    I want to compete in the trike races on May Day, I feel like I'm too tall for it, but I still want to give it a whirl.

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Go with your gut feeling. Many people advise getting involved with as many clubs as possible and saying yes to everything. I fully support that, but if you feel like saying yes to another club will overload your schedule, or you're just not that interested, it's ok to step down and not do that. That sounds a little hypocritical coming from someone involved in all things music, but the statement rings true.

    What is something someone wouldn't know just by looking at you?

    I did martial arts for six years of my life.

    What is your favorite Manchester memory?

    Any chance I get to perform at Manchester or in the community. If I had to pick one, it would be when A Cappella choir went on tour to New York City to perform at Carnegie Hall. There was a soloist at the last minute called in sick. Debra Lynn got the call during a rehearsal, and she had to leave to take care of it. She left me in charge of a choir with about 130 or so singers (other ensembles from across the country were performing with the ACC), so I got to conduct them while she left. 

  • Noelle Patterson
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Jan 17, 2023

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Noelle Patterson, and I use she/her/hers pronouns. I am a Digital Media Arts major. I will graduate in 2025. I come from Fort Wayne, IN.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am proud to be a social media assistant for the Office of Marketing!

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I chose Manchester because I wanted a school that would feel like a family to me. I also wanted a place where I could be myself and grow. Manchester has given me that and so much more. I am proud to be a Spartan!

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    My favorite thing about Manchester is that I know most students and teachers. I enjoy the community and being able to know everyone's names. 

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    Jacob Mertens, Tim McKenna-Buchanan, and Michelle Calka are all amazing professors! I refuse to choose one of them as my favorite. Each of them has taught me incredible things and proven to be helpful, understanding, reliable, responsible, and (my favorite part) interesting to be around. 

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    My favorite class so far is Digital Storytelling 1. It is a fun class where we can interact with cameras, make simple interactive games, and practice using our voices to tell stories in a podcast-like setting.
  • Jeff Diesburg
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Jan 09, 2023

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Jeff Diesburg (he/him); I am an Associate Professor and Chair of the Art Department. I am mostly from the Midwest (Iowa, Minnesota, Illinois and Indiana). I attended grad school in Georgia and Peace Corps in Panama, with shorter stints in North Carolina and Oregon. 

    What kinds of classes do you teach? What is your favorite course you've taught?

    I teach traditional and digital studios as well as LARC requirements like FYWS and Art and Life. A course can be great one semester, then less great the next time. I usually enjoy teaching traditional studios like Painting and Figure drawing.

    How long have you been working for Manchester? What led you here? Why did you choose to work here?

    This is my 12th year teaching at MU. I was applying for positions in this area of the country when the opportunity came up. I wanted to work in an art program where my abilities would be well suited to the courses I teach. This is true of the MU art program.

    What advice would you give to a Manchester student?

    If you’re gonna do it, do it well.

    What is your favorite part of your job?

    Working on art with students. (That sounds cliché, but if it weren’t true, I wouldn't do this job.)

    What would you say to someone interested in taking a class within your field?

    The art you want to make will be the best art you make.

  • Mackenzie Hoover
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Dec 19, 2022

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Mackenzie Hoover, my pronouns are she/her, and I am a senior from Tipton, IN.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    Swim, Cheer, Sister's Café employee, Social Media Intern, Spartan Choices employee. 

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I chose Manchester because of the community and how I felt like I was home.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    My favorite part about life at Manchester is the people I get to see here everyday.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    Working for a company as a Social Media/Communications Manager. 

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    My favorite professor is Professor Gohn. Even though I'm not in the science field anymore, she is definitely one of my favorite professors as she was engaging in class and I still remember a lot of her lectures to this day. 

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    Graphic Design. I loved this class and it was the first time I found that I was on the right path of what I wanted to do and it was just a fun class.

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?


    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Keep your head in the game even if it seems hard. You are here for a degree and experiences. Even if it seems hard, keep pushing yourself, it will be worth it. Also, don’t forget to enjoy yourself, four years go by fast.

  • Aaliyah Dates
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Dec 11, 2022

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Aaliyah Dates. I am a senior, class of 2023. I am from Fort Wayne, IN.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am a student health assistant for Manchester Health Services and I'm a Multicultural Affairs Programmer.

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I chose Manchester because of their health sciences program and the small faculty to student ratio.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    My favorite thing about Manchester is the close friends I've been able to meet because of Manchester's close-knit community.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I will graduate from a medical laboratory science program and eventually get my doctorate in epidemiology.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    My favorite professor is Dr. Jennifer Robison.

    What is your favorite class that you have taken at Manchester?

    My favorite class has been micro-biology.

    What is a Manchester bucket list item that you'd like to check off?

    Walking across the stage in May and shaking Pres. Dave's hand is all that is left.

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    To become involved on campus early on and not be afraid to put yourself out there. Try new things!

    What is something that someone wouldn't know just by looking at you?

    I am CPR certified and teach work skills to adults with disabilities during the summer.

    What is your favorite Manchester memory?

    Winning costume bingo dressed as Steve Harvey with my best friend, Brooke Davis, dressed as Dr. Phil.

  • Arielle O'Neal
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Dec 05, 2022

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Arielle O'Neal (she/her), I am a junior marketing major, and I am from Bluffton, Ohio.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am a social media intern, a student in the college of business, and on the volleyball team. 

    Why do you enjoy playing volleyball?

    I enjoyed playing volleyball because of the team atmosphere. Being a part of an organization striving to better players mentally and physically pushed me to become a better person both as a teammate and outside the world.

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I chose Manchester University because it felt like home. It is very similar to how my hometown looks, and it gave me relief knowing I was somewhere safe and comfortable.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    My favorite thing about Manchester is the staff and faculty. They strive to give every student here a fair chance to become the best version of themselves.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I see myself stepping into marketing and building my way up the corporate ladder.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    My favorite professor is Dr. Alicia Dailey.

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    My favorite class was Social Work.

    What's a Manchester bucket list item you'd like to check off?

    Catching a Squirrel!

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Don't expect to ride college out. Without the effort you put into your classes and jobs, your time here will become incredibly stressful. Use your opportunities wisely.

    What is something that someone wouldn't know just by looking at you?

    Something someone wouldn't know by looking at me is that I have multiple awards/records in powerlifting.

    What is your favorite Manchester Memory?

    My favorite Manchester Memory is my first year Manchester Madness.

  • Brianna Howard
    by User Not Found | Nov 21, 2022

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Brianna Howard, my pronouns are she/her, and I am from Brownsburg, Indiana.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    Black student union, Students Today, Alumni Tomorrow (STAT)

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I got a full-ride academic scholarship.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    Being with my friends.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    Making a change for people of color on campus

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    Jennifer Cheek. She is so sweet and caring and always there to help you through your problems outside of academics.

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    Human Trafficking Seminar because I could learn about a prevalent issue in our society and understand it. 

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    Playing mud volleyball.

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Take your academics seriously & reach out if you need help!

  • Bella Hurd
    by User Not Found | Nov 14, 2022

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Bella Hurd, my pronouns are She/Her, I am in the class of 2024, and I am from Winamac, Indiana.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am currently a Junior Admissions Counselor in our Office of Admissions. I'm not in any clubs at the moment, but I love attending events on campus!

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I love the small size of the campus! I felt very overwhelmed when visiting larger schools and worried that I would get lost among the crowd. I could tell that at MU the professors genuinely care about their students and want to see us succeed. I also loved how friendly and helpful people were on my visit, it immediately made MU feel like a home away from home. 

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    I really enjoy the number of clubs that we have. No matter the interest, there is most likely a club for it. This helped me very quickly find friends plus these clubs are all constantly having awesome events that everyone is welcome to attend.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I plan to work in college admissions while getting a master's degree, then working my way up into college administration.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    Professor Calka!! I really enjoy her personality, teaching style, and passion for communication. 

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    I loved taking Sacred Cows: Abortion and Second Amendment with Professor Pyrah. This class taught me how to debate and discuss very sensitive topics in a way that is respectful and how to properly educate myself on said topics.

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    I'd like to finally get out of my comfort zone and attend Camp Mac!

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Everyone is just as nervous as you are! College is new and nerve-wracking, but that doesn't mean it can't be fun too. Don't be afraid to attend events and reach out to others!

  • Charlotte Wilson
    by Brooklyn Schumm | Oct 31, 2022

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Charlotte Wilson, my pronouns are she/her, and I am a first-year from Kalamazoo, Mich.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am in esports, track and field and Manchester University Gaming Society.

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    Well, I first learned about Manchester through track and field, but it was always my top option after my first visit here. I visited about five other schools, and nothing compared to Manchester. 

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    I like the close-knit community; it started lonely, but many people opened their arms to me, invited me to things, and talked to me. It made it easy to make friends. 

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I will likely go back to my hometown and find a job for my degree.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    Barb Burdge or Robin Mitchell. They are both fun, down-to-earth professors who excite me to go to class.

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    My favorite class has been my first-year writing seminar for LGBTQ+ inclusions.

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    I want to learn more about the area and places around north Manchester because I’ve barely seen much of Indiana.

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    I am a first-year student, but I have already learned one thing: don’t stop making friends when you find one group. Meet different people in various groups.

  • Reggie McKinney
    by User Not Found | Oct 24, 2022

    My name is Reggie McKinney; my pronouns are he/him, I am a junior, and I am from Michigan City, IN.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I am on the track team for Manchester University.

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    It was a smaller school that had easy access to professors.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    I connect with people who care or want me to be successful.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I see myself in a social work agency or as a social media ambassador.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    Jonathan Friesen

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    Racial, Ethnic, & Gender inequality, because our professor let us have great conversations that were engaging and understanding. 

    What's a Manchester bucket list item you'd like to check off?

    I want to make it to my 3rd year with less stress than I expected.

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Don't dwell on the idea of fitting into a new environment. Most people here are welcoming and will help you feel comfortable.

  • Genni Isbell
    by User Not Found | Oct 17, 2022

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Genni Isbell, my pronouns are she/her, and I am a junior at Manchester from Rochester, IN.

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    It was close to home, amongst many other reasons.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    I like how you can get a close relationship with professors!

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I would like to own my own automotive shop.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    Professor Messer because he has encouraged me to keep working hard. 

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    Prison Literature! You get to watch movies and read a book to go along with the movie. 

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    I would love to have my own craft class for my handmade cards.

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    Visit your professor during office hours when you need support.

  • Kaitlyn Freel
    by User Not Found | Oct 11, 2022

    Tell us about yourself!
    My name is Kaitlyn Freel, and my pronouns are she/her/hers. I am a senior studying elementary education major and I'm from LaPorte, Indiana.

    What are you involved in on campus?
    I am on the Student Senate e-board and work for Manchester Dining at Sisters Cafe.

    Why did you choose Manchester University?
    My high school counselor had given me a list of the top schools for teacher prep programs in the state. I visited Manchester and immediately fell in love with the tight-knit community.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?
    I love getting to know everyone! I have yet to meet someone at Manchester that doesn’t want to be even a small part of your support system.

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?
    My current goal is to teach lower elementary in a school system near North Manchester.

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?
    My favorite professor is Eva Sagan. I took two of her classes, one when COVID hit and one the semester after, and she always practiced caring for students first. There is no way that I could’ve been successful in her class or here at Manchester without that type of support.

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?
    I took a Gothic literature class during my first Jan term at Manchester and I loved studying the horror genre in both literature and film.

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?
    Participating in May Day activities! I’ve always had to work when they were going on.

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?
    Give your best all the time. Thinking “Oh, it’s just one assignment. I don’t have to do it,” is easy to do, but just one can turn into several, and it will be hard to catch back up!

  • Kyla Andrews
    by User Not Found | Sep 28, 2022

    Tell us about yourself!

    My name is Kyla Andrews, my pronouns are she/hers, I am a junior (class of 2024), and I am from South Bend, IN.

    What are you involved in on campus?

    I have two jobs on campus (multicultural affairs programmer and student outreach specialist). I am a treasurer of A Cappella Choir and Disney Club.

    Why did you choose Manchester University?

    I wanted a place that would feel like home and would give me the opportunities that I wouldn’t always get at a large institution.

    What is your favorite thing about Manchester?

    I enjoy the people and the classes the most. I enjoy meeting and connecting with my professors!

    What do you see yourself doing after Manchester?

    I see myself in Lafayette, IN or somewhere in Michigan at a marketing or media-based job working with a company I believe in. 

    Who is your favorite professor you have had?

    My all-time favorite professor is Ejenobo Oke. She is so inspiring and creative. She supports all people and is one of the only professors I feel like I could comfortably talk about anything with!

    What is your favorite class you have taken at Manchester?

    My favorite class so far is Ceramics. I am only a month into the class, but it has opened so many mental doors for me!

    What’s a Manchester bucket list item you’d like to check off?

    I want to design something that will stay permanently with Manchester. 

    What advice would you give to an incoming Manchester student?

    I always tell students to take their time, sign up for anything that piques their interest, and take time for yourself to destress!

  • Gillian Thompson
    by User Not Found | Aug 30, 2022

    What are you studying?

    I am an environmental studies major.

    What are you most excited about being at Manchester?

    I'm very excited to be a Spartan and get to experience the great community Manchester has here.

    Why did you choose to attend Manchester?

    It really felt like home when I was here and I hadn't felt that with the other colleges I visited.


  • Genesis Everling
    by User Not Found | Aug 30, 2022

    What do you plan on studying?

    This will be my first year at Manchester University. I am planning to study biology-chemistry

    What are you most excited about being at Manchester?

    Being a collegiate athlete! I am on the women's swimming and dive team.

    Why did you choose to attend Manchester?

    My swim coach was very adamant about being on the team. I visited Manchester and everything began to click!

  • Braydon Quintana
    by User Not Found | Aug 30, 2022

    Tell us a little bit about yourself!

    I'm a first-year student at Manchester and plan on studying accounting.

    What has you excited about being at Manchester University? 

    I'm playing on the baseball team and getting to meet new friends!

    Why did you choose to attend Manchester?

    Everyone was so welcoming and sweet when I visited Manchester. The friendly environment is what pushed me to come here.

  • Dr. Jennifer Robison
    by User Not Found | Jun 20, 2022

    What brought you to Manchester University?


    I grew up at Manchester University in a way. My grandfather taught here from 1970 to 2004. My parents are alumni of the University, so without Manchester, I would not be here! To say that Manchester is a part of my life is an understatement. I have childhood memories here, playing in my grandfather’s office and walking around on campus. 

    My grandfather was one of the reasons I wanted to become a professor, so when I saw the opening for my position, I was so excited when they offered me the job!


    How does your doctorate in philosophy complement your career as a biologist?


    A doctorate in philosophy means we’re studying and we’re always learners. The best thing about getting a Ph.D. is that it taught me how to do research and summarize things succinctly. So as a professor, having that ability to read 10-15-page articles and summarize the biological concepts into a single slide for my undergraduate students has been extremely helpful.


    What research or projects are you and your students currently working on?


    By training, I am a plant biologist. Currently, I am interested how abiotic or environmental conditions affect plants. The lab is focusing on soybeans because they are important here in Indiana! We are looking at how increasing climate change will impact seed yield. We study how the first wounded leaf sends a signal to the second leaf. Eventually, we will try to understand how a certain amount of damage will affect fruiting. We are also working on cold stress. Soybeans do not like anything under 45 degrees, so we’re trying to see how we can change that so that we can grow soybeans earlier to get two crops during the year.


    How are students participating in these studies?


    They are doing the heavy lifting. I have three students collaborating with me, and they are doing the research. They are mimicking the “wounding” by hole punching the plants, literally! Then they do enzymatic assays to see how long the signal takes, around the wound, to be expressed on the leaf. They will report those results to me to see where we go from there.


    Are you involved with any organizations outside of the University?


    I am a mentor for Planting Science where I work with middle school and high school students to provide mentorship through their independent research in the classroom. I am also involved with Letters to a Pre-Scientist, where you are paired with a middle school student and send them four letters throughout the year talking about STEM as a career, hardships and helping them navigate the journey of becoming a scientist.


    What is one fun fact about you that others might not know?


    I blow glass! I go to a studio in Fort Wayne and rent torch time. I have made pendants and plants!


    Is there any advice you have for someone wanting to go into STEM?


    Think broad! Learn as much as the field as you can and specialize later in your education. My undergrad is in liberal arts and I can’t tell you how many times I use those skills in my career and when I was in graduate school.

  • Virginia Rendler
    by User Not Found | Jun 20, 2022

    What led you to Manchester University as a student?


    I first heard about Manchester when I was applying to college because my mom graduated from Manchester College in 1982. She wanted me to visit Manchester, and I was staunchly opposed. Coming from Minneapolis, I did not want to attend a school in such a rural area, and I was nervous about being so far from home. I didn’t know what I wanted to study in college, but when I visited Manchester to humor my mom and heard about the Peace Studies Program, I was hooked. I toured other schools, thinking to myself, this place would be perfect if they only had a peace studies major. Eventually it became clear that peace studies was the program for me, and Manchester is where I needed to be. In my first semester, I realized that a smaller school farther from home was perfect for building my self confidence and becoming independent in a safe environment. I felt instantly connected with faculty and peers who became family, and I am so grateful I made that choice. 


    What inspired your interest in peace studies?


    I grew up in a very human rights-oriented household. My parents dedicated their professional and personal time to organizations that provided direct relief to survivors of violence. I was inspired by these efforts – I felt that committing myself to the pursuit of justice was a worthwhile use of my time. In high school, I had big ideas about social justice, and knew I wanted to make a difference, but I didn’t have the language to communicate my ideas. In discovering peace studies, I realized there was a community of people who shared my values. There was an entire academic discipline devoted to what I considered to be a core tenant of who I am as a person. I was excited to discover this new language, and to investigate how I might be a peacebuilder at a variety of levels. I’m still discovering where my unique skills and interests will be of most use in the global community. I feel lucky to be surrounded by people who are similarly dedicated to discovering their place in the world.


    Share some of your favorite memories you’ve made with your position so far.


    I spent four years within the Peace Studies Program as a student, and now have worked as peace studies coordinator for two years. There have been so many incredible memories – traveling to New Orleans, Atlanta, Memphis, Chicago, Montgomery and more. Taking students on volunteering excursions is one of my favorite things to do, both in North Manchester and further afield. I love spending time with students on campus, in student meetings or in the Peace Studies Lounge. My favorite memories come from long conversations that spill out of the classroom or sharing ideas over tea and coffee. Interacting with students and my colleagues is absolutely the best part of this position. 


    Why should current students consider taking a peace studies course?

    Peace studies exemplifies the liberal arts tradition. It pulls from and is relevant to many fields: philosophy, political science, religious studies, sociology, social work, international studies, environmental studies, education, public health, and more. We like to talk about peace studies as a lens through which you can view any academic or professional field. If you have any interest in social justice, peace studies courses will provide you with the tools necessary to bring that interest to your endeavors, no matter what you are studying. Peace studies equips students with tools necessary to advocate for justice and nonviolence in their future pursuits, whether that be health care, business, sports, marketing, math or any career! If you want tools to help you be a more effective communicator, to better understand the world and to strategically affect change, I recommend taking at least one peace studies course. 


    What’s next in your future plans?


    I plan to enter Brethren Volunteer Service to go abroad for two years and do volunteer work with organizations devoted to justice and reconciliation. I hope to be able to apply the theoretical concepts I’ve gained in the classroom and practical experience I’ve developed in this job to serve communities in need. After my time abroad, I intend to continue my education in the field of peace studies and philosophy. 

  • Sydney Dillmon
    by User Not Found | Apr 11, 2022
    What led you to Manchester University?  
    I wanted to go to a smaller school that wasn’t too close to home, but I was having trouble finding a school that was the right fit for me. I have been traveling to Pierceton, Ind., which is about 30 minutes north of Manchester University, for most of my life and have driven past the University, but it never caught my eye until I was applying to colleges. When I finally took a tour here, I instantly felt at home and welcomed. The campus is very small and connected, which is what I like because I am from a very small, rural area. Everyone knows just about everyone here, and I saw that even on my tour.  

    Could you tell us the process of you deciding to major in psychology?  
    From a very young age, I have loved to listen to people and try to help them through things they may be going through. I decided sometime last year that that is what I wanted to major in and do for the rest of my life. I want to help people.  

    How do you plan to use this degree in the future?  
    My dream career path would be to become a behavioral analyst for criminals. I want to be able to talk and analyze criminals to find out why they make the decisions that they do and find out what is the best option to help them improve.  

    Can you share what you're involved with on campus?  
    I am involved in a few things around campus including being a member of the Honors Program, USG (United Sexualities and Genders), Zoology Club, Psych Society, being a Spartan Ambassador, and I am also on the Women's Golf Team here at Manchester! 

    What would you say to a student who is considering Manchester University? 
    Manchester University is a great community, even though it is small – that is what is so great about it. People are always reaching out to make sure that you are doing good and ask if you need help with anything. I would highly suggest getting involved on campus whether it is in a club, a sport, band or choir, or just hanging out and making new friends.  
  • Kyle Grubbs
    by User Not Found | Apr 04, 2022

    What led you to Manchester University as a student?

    I’m always honest and let people know I had never heard about Manchester as a high school student and that I totally applied for the free t-shirt! Who doesn’t love a free t-shirt?! I received more communication from Manchester than I did the other institutions I was looking at. I ended up being invited to Scholarship Day to interview for additional scholarship money, so that put Manchester at the top of my list. On that visit, I knew that this is where I wanted to be. I could see myself being successful here. I came from a small school and my family and I knew a small college would be the best fit for me to be able to thrive. I also wanted to be able to not be a number. I wanted to stand out some – a big fish in a small pond if you will. I also ended up meeting my college roomie at Scholarship Day! We hit it off, our families hit it off, and we’ve basically been best friends ever since then!


    It’s been almost 10 years since you’ve started working at Manchester! What motivates you to continue to work in admissions?

    It’s crazy that it’s been that long because it definitely doesn’t feel like it. I like to joke and say that I’m “geriatric” in admissions. It’s really not a job many people make a career of. It can be demanding work and most find other avenues in higher ed they prefer, but I LOVE admissions. I love the relationships I build with students and families. I love being their go-to person for everything! I love the events we put on and being the person to introduce prospective students to Manchester. I love traveling to the high schools to recruit and building relationships with school counselors (they’re true MVPs)! I’m an extroverted extrovert, so the more people I get to meet and work with daily – the better!


    You’re a person with many hats! Can you share what you do as senior assistant director of admissions and beyond?

    So many hats! I get to do a little bit of everything! My main role is recruiting. For that I work with students interested in Business Management and Professional Sales. I like to tell them that I’m their go-to-gal for everything Manchester – so if they have a question, I’m here to answer it or get them connected with who can. I also run the admissions social media accounts – shameless plug for you all to go follow @FutureMUSpartan on Twitter, Instagram and TikTok! I help create emails and coordinate events. I’m on our leadership team that works to make plans and decisions. The newest part of this role I’m in has been coordinating our Staff Development Committee which has been so fun. I’ve been able to work on professional development for our staff, team bonding, celebrations, etc. I’m loving it so far because it helps me connect with my colleagues on another level – and hep bring them joy!


    What’s been your favorite memory(s) at Manchester? As a student or an employee!

    That’s SO hard! After so much time as a student and employee there are so many wonderful memories … BUT the thing that I always come back to is the fact that I was able to study abroad twice through Manchester. I went to Spain during January session of my sophomore year and I spent a semester in Xalapa, Mexico, my junior year. What an amazing experience! I’m so thankful my parents and family encouraged me to take advantage of the opportunities and helped to make it happen.


    What do you tell prospective students who are looking for a good fit in a college and considering MU?

    If you want a community that’s invested in you, I hope Manchester is at the top of your list. There are so many people here who want to help you be successful. I always say it’s very hard to hide here. I have amazing colleagues across campus who want the best for each student. I always bring up our mission statement when I can. In part it says, we respect the infinite worth of every individual and we strive to graduate students of ability and conviction. If a student is looking for a place that will respect them for who they are coming in, but really pushes them to become their best self (wise words I stole from President Dave McFadden) – then Manchester is that place.

  • Takoda Stone
    by User Not Found | Mar 28, 2022

    What led you to Manchester University?  

    What really set it in was the culture. My priorities going into college were first that I could continue doing what I love – playing soccer and diving. Then, what is life going to be like on campus tied with how are the academics? My first contacts here were the coaches for soccer, and they instantly made me feel welcome and accepted. However, it wasn’t until I made it to North Manchester for a visit that I really fell in love with this school. The second I made it to campus and into the Office of Admissions it felt like home.  


    How did you decide on majoring in secondary education history?  

    The path that I took to decide on my major was very different. I never really knew what I wanted to do with my life until later in high school. Ideas sprouted here and there, but nothing was really pulling at my heart to follow. Then in my junior year, being in my U.S. History class after about a month, I knew I wanted to teach, and not only that, but teach history. It’s such a stereotype that all history teachers are coaches, but those are both my truest passions, sharing my love for historical knowledge and the sports that I love. 


    Can you talk about the sense of community you feel at MU?  

    The community here is unlike anything else I’ve ever experienced. Growing up, I moved a lot. I've been in a lot of different towns and a lot of different cultures and, here at MU, it’s just different in a way I can’t describe. The support system that the institution sets up for you is unreal. The people they place in your life care about you not only as a student or as an athlete but as a person – not only with the faculty but the other students here, too. My dorm floor is always bustling with people and stuff that’s happening constantly – there’s never a dull moment in Garver. It’s a place that’s open and honest and challenges you to become better, if you see it or not.  


    Could you tell us about your experience being a student-athlete so far? Successes and obstacles? 

    Being a student-athlete is amazing. I grew up in sports. It’s all I knew and how I bonded with my closest friends growing up, and when I moved and left the towns I was in, sports were always there for me. So for being able to continue that life here at Manchester I couldn’t be more grateful. I’ll be honest in saying I had a very hard time with high school being in sports. My grades were not always up to par. Yet here it’s different, the coaches are always open to help, and all the professors will work with you and your schedule to make sure you are successful. Other than grades, I’ve created friendships on these teams that I hope will last a lifetime. Being a student-athlete, however, definitely comes with its fair share of challenges. I’ve done well with my time management, but it’s still a huge stress to keep on top of everything in life. Not only that, but the physical work I put in week in and week out does pay a toll. Yet the athletic training staff here is fantastic and helps with all the problems I may have.    


    Can you share any advice you have for other student-athletes? Tips on they can manage their time? 

    Set a schedule and live by it. Set plenty of time aside for homework and just get it done. It’s much easier to do the assignments ahead of time than to fall behind in even one class and let your grades suffer. What’s arguably more important, though, is to set time for yourself, time to spend with friends, go to activities, attend other athletic events, or even just sit and watch TV some nights. Allow yourself to have a mental reset a few times a week and unwind. It’s very easy to get overwhelmed with all the due dates and pressures of games or meets or matches. Let yourself be yourself sometimes.  

  • Shayla Welch
    by User Not Found | Mar 07, 2022

    What led you to Manchester University?  

    When I was looking for colleges, I wasn’t sure where to start. I didn’t know if I wanted a small or big school, close to or far from home. I didn’t even know what programs to look for since I wasn’t sure what I wanted to study! These questions were answered quickly after I visited and went on a tour here at MU. My school was offering a visit to Manchester University as a field trip and I decided to go simply because I was excited to get a break from a day of classes. I didn’t know much about MU, just that my grandmother had graduated from then Manchester College in 1958. Just like many other Manchester students, as soon as I stepped on campus, it felt like home. Something about the small campus, beautiful trees, lively squirrels, and friendly faces told me immediately that I was right where I needed to be. I still applied for many other colleges and visited many other places, but my experiences at Manchester continued to show me that I would end up here.  


     At Manchester, not just my admissions counselors remembered me, but the professors that I met with before knew my name and recalled details from our past interactions. I could tell that here I was so much more than just another student to add to the recruitment totals. I was seen as a potential asset to the community. Someone who could make Manchester better and be made better by Manchester. Like so many other students who were inspired by their on-campus experiences, at the end of the day, my decision became easy. I wanted to go where I was wanted. Where I would thrive and where I knew I would be at home. 


    Why did you decide to major in Peace Studies, Educational Studies, and Mathematics? How do you think those will correlate in your future career?

    I came into Manchester as a mathematics major who also wanted to get all of the credits I needed in science so that I could eventually attend medical school. I had already completed two years of medicine related college courses while I was a high school student, and I completed two different licensure programs in the medical field, so I thought there was no way my major would change. However, once I began my first year, I found myself loving my mathematics courses and suffering through my chemistry course. My chemistry professor was amazing. She went out of her way to explain things to me and help me understand the content, but I just didn’t love it. Three more years of chemistry sounded like a nightmare to me, so my advisor helped me pursue other avenues. After an incredible January session trip with the Peace Studies Program that I attended due to my desire to travel, I decided to try a few education and peace studies classes alongside my math curriculum. I ended up falling in love with both programs and haven’t looked back since. 


    What are your plans after graduation?  

    I intend on going to graduate school for mathematics directly after I graduate. I am not sure where I would like to attend yet, but I am enjoying researching different graduate schools. After I finish my master’s, I would like to go into the Brethren Volunteer Service for a year or two. Service is a huge passion of mine, and this would let me do service full time! After I finish with BVS, I want to get my Ph.D. in mathematics and pursue my career goal of becoming a professor. I have a huge passion for math and want to be able to share it with mathematics students for years to come. My experience at Manchester has deepened my love for math and helped me recognize my desire to teach at the college level. I look forward to being able to use the techniques and information I learned here at MU in my future classroom. 


    You’re a Spartan Ambassador. Can you tell us how you’ve been able to connect with prospective students with this position?  

    As a Spartan Ambassador in the Office of Admissions, I can connect with prospective AND current students alike. I get the chance to give campus tours, participate in student panels, eat lunch with prospective students and much more! I love speaking to current students and my favorite thing to do is to hear all of the different Manchester stories from the people who come to visit. All of them are unique but share the common themes of community and comfort. Since I am the head ambassador, most of my days in the office are spent making schedules, communicating with other ambassadors and making sure each student who visits our campus makes some great connections with our current students. I love working in this office with so many great advisors and coworkers.   


    Can you share what else you’re involved with on campus?  

    Outside of my position in the Office of Admissions, I am very involved on campus. I spend some mornings lifeguarding at the local pool, and I am the co-treasurer of the Kenapocomoco Peace Coalition. I am not a member of the Church of the Brethren, but I am the co-treasurer of the Simply Brethren club on campus. I am a member of Students Today, Alumni Tomorrow as well, so I get to help work with fellow students on philanthropy and also interact with the community and Manchester alumni a ton during the year and at fun events like Homecoming, Giving Day, and Spartan Parents and Family Weekend. I also spend a lot of my time in the fall and some of my time in the spring golfing as a member of our women’s golf team. I love spending time with my teammates and coach during practices and weekend tournaments. If I could, I would be involved with so much more on campus as well, but since there are only 24 hours in the day, I go to other club events, like those held by Artists Anonymous and the Environmental Club when I can. 


    Share your favorite memory at Manchester so far! 

    Many of my favorite memories at Manchester University were during Camp Mack Day. Once every fall, we get a surprise day off from classes to travel to Camp Mack, where we have a day of food, activities and tons of fun. My freshman year, all of my friends and I rode together on the same bus and had so much fun, even before we arrived at camp. Once we got there, we made s’mores, went kayaking (my favorite outdoor activity), climbed the rock wall, got to know more students, played 9-square and gaga ball, beat our professors in the First Annual Honors Program Staff vs. Student Sand Volleyball Tournament, and so much more. It is easy to say that this day and subsequent Camp Mack Days have created the absolute best memories I have at Manchester and led me to meet new people and try new things that have made my experience on campus even more amazing.  

  • Colleen Caylor
    by User Not Found | Feb 07, 2022

    Why did you choose Manchester University? 
    I had my reservations about Manchester before coming here. I assumed it was a small, boring school in a town with nothing to do. Once I came for my tour, I knew immediately that it felt like home. I could sense that the community was strong here and I would fit in. I knew I wanted to be part of the community here on campus.  


    What factors led you to double major, and how do you think your majors will correlate with one another? 
    Coming into college, I only had a basic idea of what I wanted to do. I was thinking it would be something in conservation or ecology, but I didn’t know for sure. I chose biology and environmental science because that gives me more skills in different areas than just one degree. I thought that would leave me with more career options. In addition, the majors themselves are similar enough that some classes overlap. That way, I’m not too overwhelmed.  

    How do you plan to use these degrees in the future? 
    Honestly, I don’t know. I assume I’ll go to grad school and become a researcher or a field scientist. Before I committed to Manchester, I was honest about my career uncertainty, and the school made it clear that I would have opportunities, such as research and internships, that would help me find a career path. 

    What clubs or organizations have you joined on campus?  
    I am involved in women’s golf, the Honors Program, American Chemical Society, TriBeta, Environmental Club, Kenapocomoco Peace Coalition, Psych Society, Students Today Alumni Tomorrow, Spartan Ambassadors, and I am a founding member of Zoology Club.  

    Can you tell us about your favorite memory related to one of your majors?
    In this semester’s biology lab, I was able to conduct my own research on campus regarding soil health in different areas. It means a lot to me that I was given the independence to explore an issue important to me and gain research experience at the same time. 

  • Braxton Stewart
    by User Not Found | Jan 26, 2022

     What led you to Manchester University? 

     With MU being close to home, it is perfect – especially with the small-town vibes. I can get around super easily, plus, I had prior knowledge from when I was in 4th grade and came to visit with my class. 

    How many clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus? What roles do you hold within them?  

    I am mainly involved in Theatre Society, where I am the historian, so I take pictures of different events and other things as well. I was in last year’s production of No Exit by Jean Paul-Sartre as the bell boy and this year’s production of The View by MU alumnus Ken Watson-Haynes as Jason. Currently I am working on assistant direction of It’s a Wonderful Life a live radio play by Joe Landry.  

    You’re a published writer! Could you tell us about your book and the process you went through to get published?  

    As a self-published author, I have come to learn many things of self-publishing. Some of those things are finding a good editor (Emerging Ink Solutions is great!) You need a cover design, too (some editors may have a bundle with cover design, too). Personally, I self-publish on KDP (Kindle Digital Printing), which is free. You just need a manuscript and cover – and bam. My books are dark fantasy which follows a prince to former prince named Cya Sya Do IV, who steps down from the throne after the death of his father as evil releases onto the Earth breaking through the walls of Abika. You can find the Cya Sya Do Chronicles on Amazon! 

    What goals do you have as a writer and a future educator? 

    I would love for my books to be adapted into a movie or television series and potentially a graphic novel! It is a long-term goal of mine to see it happen! As a future educator my goal is to help students find a love for literature, rather than just say here is this – I expect an essay on the book next week. It is just something that should not be done as it could make students hate reading. Instead, I plan to use an open mind and help find what students are interested in reading and vice versa  

    Do you have any advice for students who want to get their written work published?  

    Do not fall for any vanity press scams. If you see something that sounds too good to be true, it will get you nowhere. Plus, vanity presses are super pushy, they will keep calling and emailing you. Do not pay to be published – pay for an editor and cover designer. Watch videos to improve your skills – Jenna Moreci is great! To close, my last piece of advice is if you want to traditionally publish, find an agent, most traditional publishers won’t accept your work without an agent. 

  • Deion Gilmore
    by User Not Found | Jan 10, 2022

    What led you to Manchester University?  

    What led me to Manchester University was the education it provided for my major, as well as the experience to build up my skills for future internships and job opportunities. 


    How has your experience been as student-athlete studying sports management?  

    My experience as a student-athlete was more balanced because I was able to get everything done on time and was focusing on one task at a time. For my major, it has helped me build more connections with my peers, who also play sports. And I gained more knowledge about my sport when it comes to marketing. 


    How do you plan to use this major in the future? 

    I plan to use this major to give back to the community of my favorite sport. It has helped me build more connections with people and taught me how to be more confident and disciplined. I will use this major to help me in equipment management for football. I plan on working as an equipment manager for an NFL team. 


    Do you have any advice for students who want to play collegiate level sports?  

    Never be afraid to go above and beyond your expectations. You are always going to have competition in sports and in life. Doing more than what is expected of you will create more opportunities in the future. 


    Can you share your favorite memory so far as a Manchester football player?  

    My favorite memory as a Manchester football athlete was beating Franklin my sophomore year because I got my first sack, and we had not beaten them in 21 years. 

  • Kora Beasley
    by User Not Found | Jan 03, 2022

    What drew you to Manchester University?  

    I knew I wanted to visit Manchester University after hearing how much my family loved it here! I’m the fourth generation to come to Manchester and after visiting, I knew it was the perfect fit. The class sizes are perfect, and the community is wonderful! 

    Why did you decide to major in population health?  

    While deciding majors, I debated between strictly science and communications! When I came across population health, it seemed like the perfect combination of both. This major also opens doors for various paths in graduate school and an opportunity for a career in social justice. 

    How do you plan to use this major after graduation?  

    After graduation, I plan to attend graduate school for public health! I hope to create a fulfilling career with my future public/population health knowledge.  

    What other organizations are you involved with on campus? 

    On campus, I am involved in the Kenapocomoco Peace Coalition, Honors Program, A Cappella Choir, United Sexualities and Genders Club, Zoology Club, faith-based organizations, and Students Today, Alumni Tomorrow (STAT). 

    Can you tell us more about the family environment at Manchester?  

    Manchester feels like home! It seems like there are always smiling and kind people around campus. I love the environment in classes with group work and the friendships you form with those on campus and in your dorm. There are so many friendly faces :) 

    What has your favorite course been as a population health major? 

    My favorite course in the population health major so far is Social Gerontology. I enjoy learning about different groups of people and their health care needs, so this course has kept my interest!  

  • Katherine Matutes
    by User Not Found | Dec 10, 2021

    Tell us about yourself and what led you to Manchester?

    I got my doctoral degree at Purdue University. I wasn’t clear on my path after grad school. I thought about dietetics, but I had both my kids during grad school, and becoming a registered dietician required an internship. I sort of just stumbled into my health and wellness director role at a large community center. It was a career path that had never occurred to me before, but I had no growth after working there for 10 years. I transferred over to the University of Indianapolis where I had the same job description but on a larger scale. I would have stayed there, but the pandemic had other plans. My position was eliminated with 50 other people. I started looking for my next thing, and I had a long-term goal of returning to academia. My doctoral thesis is in molecular nutrition, and Manchester had just opened the nutrigenomics program in Fort Wayne. It’s a great combination of my education and skills set with where they’re hoping to send their registered dietetics students when they go on to their master’s program.

    We’ve adopted a nutrition sciences program to start in fall 2022. Can you tell us about that and how this will impact the University?

    I hope to see this program help students figure out their career path. It isn’t just being a nutritionist –there are so many avenues nutrition sciences support. We hope to see a trend toward preventative medicine as to how we are educating people in the medical field and how a nutrition background will help them in the future. I think we’ll see double majors and minors from exercise science, pre-pharmacy, and nursing students.

    What career opportunities would be available for someone with a nutrition sciences degree?

    We have two different tracks: the nutritionist track and the registered dietician track. Nutritionist is more community focused and client facing. You could see someone working in a community center, humanitarian support, or food marketing communications. The registered dietician route is more lab and clinical focused. One career that surprised me was my own as a health and wellness director. Another one that people might know about is nutraceutical sales

    Why should a prospective student choose our nutrition sciences programs over others in Indiana?

    One thing we’re going to have is hands-on experiences for students. We have a food sciences lab where most of our classes will be taken. Students won’t be sitting in a lecture on how you implement these changes – we’re going to be in the kitchen doing it and applying these skills into the real world. The small class sizes are nice. When you go to a place like Purdue University, where your smallest class size might be 50 people, you’re going to have a much different relationship with your faculty than you would at Manchester. There’s so much communication inter-departmentally that there’s going to be some cross collaboration that benefits students. I hope to have real clients. One of the biggest barriers for students in this field is that they often graduate without having any client interaction. We are going to prepare them before they go into their career.

    What advice do you have for anyone interested in studying this field?

    Talk to people in this field. Find someone who would be willing to participate in a job shadow or interview. Ask them about their professional life, not just their studies but their work life, too. Students don’t get that guidance soon enough in their educational careers to understand how much of an impact that can have. Also know the requirements you need to earn your degree. It’s important they understand the education requirement.

    Is there anything else you would like to add about yourself?

    I’m passionate about food and eating, and I think it’s difficult to be in the nutrition field if you don’t understand how to apply the principles of nutrition through food. There will be a big emphasis in our curriculum on how you make those food choices and apply them to your daily life. I’m very passionate about climate change, and there is no other industry that has more impact on climate than the food industry. With the knowledge they’ll retain, nutrition students can make a huge impact to climate change.

  • Scott Humphries
    by User Not Found | Dec 01, 2021

    Tell us about yourself and your musical background.

    I had a high school band director who was phenomenal. I was inspired by him to become a band director myself. I was always into music. I had taken piano lessons since the third grade, then in middle school band, I started the saxophone, which set the tone for my music career. I went to James-Madison University for my undergrad, where I majored in both piano and saxophone. After I graduated, I taught band in a very rural area for five years. I decided I wanted to go back to school and was a graduate assistant at Virginia Tech, where I worked with the marching band. After my master’s, I went back to teaching – one of the schools being in my hometown. I had always wanted to make the leap to university teaching.

    Why do you teach at Manchester?

    When I found the opening for my position at Manchester, I knew it fit my skill set. I could be the band director and teach the music education courses that are a part of the job description. It seemed like a good fit. It felt like home here. Training the future generations of music educators is the reason why I teach at Manchester. The students here want to experience as much as they can.

    Can you tell us what your day-to-day looks like?

    The fall semester is always packed. Marching band takes up a lot of time with rehearsal and administrative work. We perform at all the home games and for area high schools, which is extra commitment. Last year they canceled football season the week before band camp, so this is our first full season.. It was interesting starting a band without having a performing season, but we ended up playing for some high schools in the area.

    I also teach a few music education courses. I teach saxophone lessons, jazz band and one of the new experience courses for first year students. So, I stay pretty busy! Second semester is a little less intense. Symphonic band meets in the spring and marching band meets in the fall. Symphonic is not as rigorous as far as time commitment, which gives me time to actively recruit. I’ve contacted several prospective students by text or email, and I’ve judged about 30 bands this fall.


    The Spartan Pride Marching Band, which is under your direction, is in its second year. How’s that going?

    For the past two years, our numbers have been in the mid-20s for band members. I’d like to see those numbers go to about 50 in the next five years once the word gets out and people start to learn more about the Spartan Pride Marching Band. I want color guard a part of it as well. It’s been a struggle getting this off the ground because not many incoming students know we have it. We’ve done a lot of advertising this past year, so we’re hoping to see more growth in the next few years.

    Is there anything you’d like to add regarding the music program at Manchester?

    We have a well-rounded music program here including all performance areas, music education, music theory and composition, and music performance. We have great faculty who care about each individual. I went to a huge school with over 20,000 students in attendance, and the fact that you get individual attention from the music faculty is a benefit that encourages growth for each student.

    For prospective students, take time to understand what it takes to be a music major. Talk to current students who are studying music or your band or choir director. It’s a very intense major. 

  • Sun Kang
    by User Not Found | Nov 09, 2021

    Tell us about yourself and what led you to Manchester University?

    I’m originally from Los Angeles. I got my degree at the University of Louisville and where I also was teaching. My class size was 100+ students. I didn’t know anyone’s name or any of my students. I really didn’t like that. I was looking for a small liberal arts college and that’s what led me to Manchester University. My advisor at the time, who is from Indiana, had a lot of nice things to say about the University.

    Why do you teach at Manchester University?

    I never thought I would be a teacher. I was always such a businessperson. I was in the golf industry for seven years. When I was at Barry University in Miami, Fla., I earned my master’s and began student teaching there. I knew a lot of sport management majors at Barry who were lost and curious on how to get into the sports industry. I found myself advising them while student teaching, and I found that very rewarding. Teaching has its own rewards. You can watch a student start as a first-year, graduate, get their career and develop. The things you teach will have impact on people's lives. To me, that was why I wanted to become a teacher, and Manchester embraces that even further. Our mission and my teaching goals came together very well.

    How does the Gilbert College of Business stand out from other business schools in Indiana?

    The one-on-one relationship with student and professor is very important. When I was teaching at Louisville, I didn’t have time to check every student’s assignment. My teacher assistants would do the grading for me, and I would never see the kind of work my students were producing. Here at Manchester, when I have 20 students, I read everything they write. I can give them prompt feedback. When it comes to the Gilbert College of Business in itself, all of the faculty members here have industry experience. No professor is here just for teaching. They bring their industry knowledge to the classrooms. It’s so beneficial to share this real-world knowledge with our students. We can prep students just for that.

    Students get hands-on experiences in their courses. In my event management course, students work in groups to create and host an event. If something goes wrong or no one attends their event, they can learn from their failures. Manchester is a safe place to do that.

    What career opportunities are available for someone with a degree in sport management?

    They’re divided into three areas: one is professional; the others are university and high school levels. We have graduates who work with professional teams like the Colts, Pacers, Fort Wayne Komets and Mad Ants. At the university level, we have people at schools like Bowling Green University. We also have a lot of coaches and athletic directors at the high school level. These three areas can range in different departments from sales to marketing, or facility to event managing.

    Do you have any advice for current and prospective students in sport management?

    The current students are required to complete an internship, but doing multiple internships is something I highly recommend. My career landed on my feet by doing an internship. I am a high believer that if you do well at an internship and develop that network, it could lead to something great.

    For prospective students and early career sports managers, I would highly recommend job shadowing someone who has their career interest. I encourage that because you may find that something you once were interested in is not something you want to do anymore. College is where you find your true passion. Manchester allows you to find out who you are.  We’re here to match your passion with a career you want to get one day.

  • Joel Kelley
    by User Not Found | Oct 28, 2021

    You transferred to Manchester from another institution. Why did you feel Manchester would be a better fit than where you previously attended?

    I was transferring out of a university where my major department was falling apart. By the time I decided to leave, most schools had closed their application window for transfers. I needed a school that I could feel at home in my major and a school where my program worked and cooperated.

    I was also unhappy with my professors at my old institution and wanted to be in a place where the professors were what I want to be as a teacher. I received an email from Manchester telling me about their campus and scholarships, so I decided to start looking into the school. On the YouTube channel I discovered two videos showcasing Dr. Lynn and Dr. Humphries, and watching them teach really told me that I would fit into the program here, because I want to be a teacher like them.

    When I visited, I hit it off immediately with professors and students, and I loved every second of my visit. My old school was big and, out of 20,000 students, I was the only one in my major, and that often meant that no one knew how to help me. Here at Manchester, the department has been so helpful, and I am constantly in contact with an amazing and supportive team.

    You’re studying instrumental music education. What made you decide on this major?

    My story goes back a long time. My father was a band kid, as was his mother and several generations prior. I joined band the first chance I could, and I enjoyed it! I loved music, and it was always a large part of my life. When I got to high school, it was rough. The general student body was not very welcoming, and each day was tough to go to school, but the band was supportive and tight knit. I found a home there. I was co-section leader my sophomore year, and the next year, I would be section leader to a large group of rookies in marching band. It was a privilege and an honor to teach two years of rookies to be superb musicians and marchers. I was able to fully experience all the struggles of being a band director: money, administration, transportation, weather, students’ parents, performance spaces under construction, and yet, I still felt that teaching band was my calling.

    Music has taught me that emotion is the essence to living life. Joy, pain, sadness – all these emotions are what make life tangible and worth the experience. An ensemble can play a piece of music and be technically flawless, but adding emotions to music makes it tangible and compelling. Music then becomes the greatest form of emotional expression ever, and teaching music can help kids learn the value of emotions, relate to historical music pieces and perhaps even make them more empathetic people.

    Music has meant the world to me, carrying me through some tough times, and that is why I believe that teaching music is valuable and what I want to do for the rest of my life. As I see schools cut their performing arts programs, another quote comes to mind, “Sooner or later, these kids aren't going to have anything to read or write about.” Therefore, I find the necessity to teach music. I find myself wanting to share the impact that music made on my life. If I can teach one child to play an instrument and love music for themselves, that is even more valuable than writing a song and being known by the whole world. That child’s life will be better, and they can carry music with them through any hardship. “Playing music is supposed to be fun. It's about heart, it's about feelings, moving people, and something beautiful, and it's not about notes on a page,” and nothing more valuable can be taught.

    My hope is that through teaching music I may help other students learn to love music as much as I do. My hope is to find a high school that does not have a band program or has a weakly established program and build a program from the ground up. I hope to create a program that is integrated into the community and helps strengthen the school, the town and perhaps the families associated with the band, and most of all that student's sense of self. I hope to create a culture around the band program and through that culture the students will improve their communities and families.

    What instruments can you play?

    My primary instrument is trombone, which I play in jazz band, however I march baritone in the Spartan Pride marching band, play tuba in our small brass ensemble, and bass trombone in orchestra. Besides that, as an education major, they want us to learn all instruments so that we can teach them.

     Have you joined any music ensembles or other clubs or organizations? What’s that experience like?

    Yes! I am in many music organizations such as the Spartan Pride Marching Band, Manchester Symphony Orchestra, the University jazz band, Oak Leaf Brass, Nafme (a student organization of future music educators), and Gold and Black Attack. As I am only just starting my first semester, I haven’t had the opportunity to join many more student organizations, but I do want to!

    The students in each organization are amazingly kind and welcoming. I haven’t found any group that has been limiting or rude. When you show up and join, the older members are just glad you’re here at Manchester and share the same passions!

    Can you share advice for other transfer students and how to adapt to new changes?

    For any transfer students, or students who are considering transferring to Manchester, first off … I hope you know that it is perfectly fine to transfer schools. When I transferred, I thought that people were going to think that I had just failed and given up, but there is nothing that is healthy fighting to succeed in a place that you just don’t fit in. I thought that I knew what I wanted in a school when I applied to my former school during high school. I was led to believe I knew the situations and state of affairs at that school, and I was so wrong. The longer I was there, the more I knew I didn’t fit, and that the style of education there wasn’t what I wanted to be as a teacher. It was valuable because I learned what I didn’t like and didn’t want to be, and I took that experience and ran with it! I transferred here and found my home.

    Keep an open mind, I transferred out of bad experiences, and it took me awhile to remember that this isn’t there and I don’t have to worry about the old issues coming back. Keep an ear to the ground and take advantage of every amazing thing that Manchester can offer you. This school has continually surprised me. Every day, I meet amazing people that have been so welcoming and supportive. The opportunities afforded to Manchester students far outweigh those of other schools, especially for music! For music education, I would say Manchester is second to none. We have amazing faculty and opportunities that can’t be had at other schools: a full-time orchestra, amazingly talented ensembles, travel opportunities, great student teaching and observation placements, and students who are all mutually supportive.

    Lastly, don’t be afraid to change and explore. Manchester can be a great restart and is an amazing safe space to explore careers and majors and become (as everyone says… and yes, it might seem overstated but is 100% true) your best self. When I came here, I constantly heard that and it sounded just like one of those strange sayings that universities have, same with “Spartans for Life” … but it is true, and it didn’t take long for me to love hearing those two things. The faculty and staff and students all want to see you achieve your maximum potential. Take the momentum that they and an extremely supportive line of amazing alumni give you and run like the wind, because even if you trip and stumble, the Manchester family will help you, and you will reach heights that aren’t possible anywhere else.

    Reach out to students, professors or advisors -- anyone here will support you wholeheartedly. Even me! Reach out and say hey! Ask any questions you have or need! Welcome to the Spartan Family.

  • Sefunmi Babatunde
    by User Not Found | Oct 08, 2021

    Tell us about your background and why you decided to attend Manchester?

     I was born in Nigeria, and I’ve lived in Indiana for about 10 years now. I went to a very small high school in Indianapolis where I felt very comfortable. I felt like if I wanted to succeed and be ready for the world after college, I needed to attend a smaller university, like my high school, where I would receive the attention similar to what I had in high school. Although there are many options of small colleges to attend, I fell in love with the Manchester community and chose here.

    You’re a part of the MU Honors Program. What encouraged you to be a member of the program?

    I really felt like my goals for succeeding in college fell in line with the mission statement and goals of the Honors Program. I was part of an honors society in high school so I was accustomed to the requirements needed to maintain membership in programs like this. However, the one difference I noticed from the high school honors program to the Honors Program here at Manchester is the sense of community we have with one another. It feels like we are all working together to ensure we all succeed.


    As a biology-chemistry major, what are your next steps after graduating?

    I plan on continuing my education after graduation by going to medical school.


    What advantages has the Honors Program brought you?

    The main advantage I've received is the way that the Honors Program forces me to constantly grow. It may seem that, as an educationally motivated program, you may only find growth in aspects of your education, however, I’ve seen myself grow in a multitude of ways because I am constantly surrounded by people who are aiming for incredibly high goals.


    What advice can you share for other Honors Program students?

    The best advice I can give any fellow Honors Program student is that you shouldn’t be scared to step out of your comfort zone. You are presented with a whole new world of possibilities by simply choosing to be part of this program, and you must take advantage of it.


  • Shelbi Corlett
    by User Not Found | Sep 21, 2021

    Tell us about your journey in serving for the U.S Army!

    I joined when I was 17 so that I could go to college. I knew I wanted to go to college but I was not sure what for. I became a National Guard Recruiter while I was figuring out what I wanted to do. I have been in for four years now, and all my professors are super helpful if I have training during classes.

    What made you decide to attend Manchester after serving?

    Manchester was a school I had always loved all through high school, but I had decided not to go to college after graduation. A year into a job I didn’t love I got a follow up letter from Manchester asking me how life was going after graduation. I scheduled a visit to once again get more information about the campus. Being at a smaller campus, my professors are very understanding that my situation tends to be a little different from my peers.

    Why did you choose business management as your major?

    I already had many credits that I was able to transfer from my service before I started classes here at Manchester. I also enjoyed the real world application of the business classes Manchester offers.

    What are you involved with on campus?

    I am a resident assistant on campus, and I’m also involved in the Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, and the College of Business Club.

    Can you share advice for students who are also taking a non-traditional education route?

    My biggest bit of advice would be to face your fears head-on. Having a unique story at Manchester does not make you weird – it makes you stand out from your peers. This campus is what you make of it. Choose to be involved and it will be a great experience where you are able to meet others going into your career field. Dive into the possibilities of Manchester – we are a family.  


  • Beth Schultz
    by Daniel Chudzynski | Jun 22, 2021
    Nursing Program Director

    "Manchester recently introduced a nursing program. How do you think this program will impact our university?"  
    "I think we will have students that choose Manchester because we have a nursing program. There has been interest in the past in nursing so potential students who wanted to attend Manchester went other places. Now they can attend Manchester!"

    "Why should prospective nursing students attend the MU nursing program versus other schools in Indiana?"
    "Most nursing programs do not admit freshman students directly into the nursing program. Students complete certain courses and then compete with other students for admission into nursing. We admit students right into nursing. As long as they maintain the overall and science GPA required for nursing they maintain their spot in the cohort, no competing with other students after they are admitted to nursing at Manchester."

    "What other career opportunities can a BSN bring?" 

    "Other careers for nurses

    - working at a theme park- most large theme parks employee a nurse

    -working at summer camp- either seasonally or all year around

    - being a certified lactation consultant and helping moms and babies with breastfeeding either in the hospital or in the outpatient setting

    working on the mission field

    - working in industry for companies that develop equipment for use in the hospital

    - working as a forensic nurse

    - specializing in specific areas such as wound care, education for specific diseases (diabetes, heart disease)

    - working for NASCAR

    - working on a transport team that flies and cares for patients (helicopters, planes)

    - becoming a military officer, often the military will provide financial assistance with school

    - writing health policy and becoming an advocate

    - developing a business as a life coach             

    Many nurses begin their careers in the hospital and then seek additional education and advanced degrees. Some examples of advanced nursing degrees (a masters or doctorate) include: a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (probably the highest paid advanced practice nurse), a certified nurse midwife, and a nurse educator. There are many different specialty areas for nurse practitioners (NP's)- they are separate education tracks and include neonatal NP, pediatric NP, family NP, psychiatric NP, geriatric NP, acute care NP...."

    "What advice do you have for prospective or current nursing students?"  

    • "Shadow or talk with people who are nurses, ask them specific questions about what they do
    • Assess your personal strengths-nursing school is rigorous, the national licensing exam (NCLEX) is an extremely difficult standardized test
    • Learn to manage stress and practice self-care"

    "What is one fun fact about you that others might not know?"
    "I really enjoy a good adventure. Whether it's planning and taking a trip or completing a high-ropes or zipline course, I'm ready to go! That's probably why I enjoy working as a camp nurse."

  • Ania Ksiezyc
    by User Not Found | May 20, 2020

    Covid 19: Finding Light Amid the Crisis

    My Story

    It was late January; I was waiting in an airport becoming frenzy with excitement to board my plane to begin my semester abroad. I was heading for Ireland, the land full of green hills and cobble stone towns.  It did not come easy. Though I come from a low-income background, I was not going to let my socioeconomic status rape me of my chance to submerse myself into the experiences studying abroad had to offer. I worked hard to apply for many scholarships, including the Benjamin A. Gilman. Without the Gilman, the likely hood of my spring semester being spent abroad would have been relatively slim. The Gilman works to broaden the student population that studies and interns abroad by supporting undergraduates who might not otherwise participate due to financial constraints. When I heard about the Gilman I worked hard during my application and was so thankful to have received the award. After all the hard work of applying to scholarships and wrapping up first semester of junior year, the excitement for Ireland was more real than I could even begin to describe.

    Arriving at the Dublin airport was the coolest experience, after eight hours of air travel I was eager to see what has been waiting for me! I had to board a bus once I got to Ireland and luckily, I met with a few others from other parts of America who were also heading to Maynooth University. We all safely arrived in the small town of Maynooth. Wow. The architecture of Ireland was breath taking. I fell in love deeply with what surrounded me. The University was similar to Manchester with professors enthusiastic about connecting with students. This truly made me feel at home. After about one month during my stay in Ireland I began to really open up and started exploring the great city of Dublin and checking out local shops. However, as more days went on the talk of Coronavirus kept growing. Events started to get canceled and worry hung over our heads.

    3:00 a.m. on the day of March 12th I jump out of bed in a panic. My phone blasted with emails and several calls from family members all worried because of the U.S. boarder closing due to COVID-19. Waking up to emergency departure requirements from the country I worked hard to be in was one of the biggest disappointments in my life. I had to leave with in the next 5 days and was very fortunate to find an open flight. I spent my last few days going to my favorite places to eat and saying goodbye to everyone. I walked through an empty airport, boarded my flight and just like that I was on my way back to the U.S. It was amazing when I landed on U.S. soils because at that point, I knew I was safe and I was going to see everyone I love again.

     The Light Amid the Crisis

    COVID-19 has brought much uncertainty and huge lifestyle changes for everyone globally. However, I feel instead of drowning in the negativity we can learn to observe the greatness around us. Especially on the perseverance and strength many organizations have maintained during these troubling times. Both Manchester University and Maynooth University have shown what it means to keep the ball rolling with unexpected and drastic circumstances. I want to highlight a few of the great things both my university at home and my university abroad has done to make us students feel secure and able to finish this semester strong.

    During a crisis like this, it can be easy to want to clock out and give up. But this is far from what I have seen from both Manchester and Maynooth University. I have had professors schedule online video chats with me from Manchester to make sure I have returned safely and to just check it. My professors at Maynooth have had such a “go with the flow” attitude when it came to any of concerns regarding class work. Let’s not forget about the consistent updates both university Presidents have provided for us students and concerned parents. I am entirely grateful for the staff at both Universities.

    Campus Life:
    Let us talk about campus life. I know what you may be thinking, “Um… There is no campus life?” Actually, both Manchester and Maynooth have done an excellent job at providing alternative online activities for students to escape the daily stress of COVID-19. At Manchester, the department of student involvement has been putting on fun online events and even clubs like Kenapocomoco still hold their regular meetings through Zoom. Similar things are happening through Maynooth University. Maynooth’s International Office provided “tea and chat” events when I was on campus in Ireland and they have now moved their events into an online chat. Its really amazing to know that staff are still working hard for all of us when they too must be feeling the stress of COVID-19.  

    In the End:
    At the end of the day, these are the things we need to look for and focus on. Even someone like me who has had an amazing opportunity taken from me can see the light and positivity. I know we aren’t all in the same circumstances but let’s challenge our human capabilities and find the strength from the small amounts of greatness surrounding us. Forgive yourself when times get tough and you break down. Encourage yourself to jump back up and focus on the light!

  • Kerolous Abd
    by Andrew Luwaga | Mar 02, 2020
    Kerolous Abd, from Sterling Heights, Mich., is a second-year (P2) student in Manchester’s Doctor of Pharmacy Program.  

    There are pharmacy programs all over the country.

    Why did you choose Manchester University?  

    Manchester University is unique in that it focuses on two important factors that I strive to incorporate in my career as a pharmacist. Those are community service and leadership. Manchester prepares every student to have a positive impact on their community through various community service opportunities. Manchester also prepares every student to be a leader through an excellent education that teaches care for patients above all else, guiding the community served by the pharmacist to a better overall health.  

    What drew you to pharmacy? 

    I have always had an interest in science and medicine, but it wasn’t until I was employed in a pharmacy that I learned that it’s what I wanted to pursue as a career. Observing the pharmacist interact with patients and explain different medication options to them enabled me to see that a career in pharmacy will allow me to integrate my passion for patient care and my aptitude for science. Through consultations, a pharmacist provides patients with invaluable knowledge that helps them stay on the right track toward a healthier life. I pursue that knowledge every day in pharmacy school so that I too can use it and leave a positive impact on my community. 

    What is one lesson you’ve learned in the classroom and one lesson you’ve learned outside the classroom?   

    In the classroom, I often hear professors say, “You can't look at a treatment as black or white; you have to look at the patient as a whole.” Habitually, we as students like to think that to every disease or problem there is one specific treatment, which generally is not the case. When we factor in a patient's relevant history and other pertinent information, it often results in a different treatment plan and one that is more beneficial to the patient’s health.  
    One vital lesson I learned outside the classroom is collaborative practice, which is the idea of multiple different health care providers working together to deliver the highest quality of care. Collaborative practice teams can include pharmacists, doctors, nurses and other health care providers relevant to the patient's case. Communication in our profession is a key element. Working together will result in the opportunity for the care team to learn from each other and provide the highest possible quality of care. 

    What advice would you recommend to students considering pharmacy school? 

    Be open minded and consider your options. Pharmacists are often labeled as someone who dispense medications, however in the past few years, the profession has branched into a lot of different specialties. Reflect on what is important to you and pursue that. Pharmacy is a very rewarding career and it gives us the opportunity to direct our community to a better overall health outcome. 
  • Katy Gray Brown
    by Andrew Luwaga | Feb 26, 2020
    Katy Gray Brown is a professor of philosophy and peace studies and directs the Peace Studies Institute and Program in Conflict Resolution. She graduated from Manchester in 1991 with an undergraduate degree in peace studies and earned a master’s in peace studies from Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute and a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Minnesota.  


    What brought you to Manchester University?  

    The first time or the second time? I came for undergrad to study peace studies, and the second time I came to teach peace studies!  


    What’s your favorite part of your job at Manchester?  

    The community of students, staff and faculty. I get to work with a really diverse group of colleagues. They have different interests, different areas of expertise, and different perspectives and experiences. People are drawn to Manchester for a reason, because they connect with something about the kind of community and culture that we create as learners, teachers, administrators and workers in all these different areas. People choose to work at Manchester because the mission means something to them. We take seriously the values of respect for persons and improving the world.   


    What are you involved in on campus?  

    I’m involved with the Kenapocomoco Peace Coalition, which is a group of students, staff and faculty concerned about social justice and issues of peace. I’m also a faculty at large representative to the Academic Governance Council, which is the faculty senate, and a member of the American Association of University Professors. And, I live just two blocks from campus, so this really feels like an extension of my home.  

    What makes Manchester special?  

    At Manchester, we get to know each other. Even if we work in different areas, even if we have just one class together, we see each other in different contexts and so we have a sense of each other as persons. That doesn’t happen at every school. This sense of community particularly defines the peace studies program and has shaped my life profoundly.  

    What is some advice you would give to prospective or incoming students?  

    When considering a school or a work position, people should look for a place where they can be challenged and develop the things that matter most to them. That might not be the academic program, their major, it might be some other thing that they care about, some other pursuit. But you should surround yourself with people who will help you be the kind of person you want to be. That doesn’t always mean getting out there and joining a bunch of clubs, it might just be identifying someone who can be a mentor or people you admire, people you might want to be friends with.   

    What is a fun fact about you that not many other people know?  

    I worked as a part-time finishing carpenter for about a decade. A friend and I renovated a house, framing, plumbing, wiring and all while I was in grad school. I never mastered mudding drywall. 
  • Marisarah Torres
    by Andrew Luwaga | Feb 11, 2020

    Marisarah Torres is a fourth-year (P4) student in Manchester’s Doctor of Pharmacy Program. 


    What clubs or organizations are you a part of? 
    Christian Pharmacists Fellowship International (CPFI) and APhA-ASP (American Pharmacists Association) 
    There are pharmacy programs all over the country. Why did you choose Manchester University? 

    I choose Manchester because of the great treatment I received from day one and the high-end education and state-of-the-art technology.  


    What experiences have you had at Manchester that stand out? 
    The connections with my classmates make me feel closer to home even when I’m so far away. 
    What are some advantages to living and studying in Fort Wayne? 

    The safety, tranquility and nice people. 


    What is one lesson you’ve learned in the classroom is that and one lesson you’ve learned outside the classroom? 

    One lesson I have learned in the classroom is that it’s definitely better to come over-prepared than underprepared, and one lesson I have learn outside the classroom is to pay attention to details.


    What is your favorite class you’ve taken at Manchester? Why? 

    My favorite class at Manchester was Capstone because even when it was overwhelming it helped me prepared for rotations. It gave me a taste of hands-on job preparation.  


    What advice would you recommend to students considering pharmacy school? 

    My advice is to understand that studying is different when you are in a more “aggressive” program and to never underestimate the material therefore is important to choose a school that meets your needs and your values. 


    What drew you to pharmacy? 

    I chose pharmacy over other healthcare professions because I liked the wide variety of career opportunities; pharmacists are a respected member of the community; and because pharmacists would be able to help patients optimize their drug therapy in order to improve their health.


    What else would you like to add? 
    Pharmacy is a hard career that requires a lot of dedication, time and responsibility. It is important to understand this before making a career decision. Furthermore, if you do choose pharmacy let me tell you that you will enjoy Fort Wayne as well as Manchester. 
  • Parth Patel
    by Daniel Chudzynski | Feb 11, 2020

    Parth Patel is a third-year (P3) student in Manchester’s Doctor of Pharmacy Program. 


    There are pharmacy programs all over the country. Why did you choose Manchester University? 

    Major reason I chose Manchester was the class sizes. Each class has approximately 70 students, which I truly enjoy. Everyone gets to know everyone; no one is made to feel as they are just a number. I really appreciate the availability of professors, as they are willing to get to know you not only as a student, but also as a person. 


    What experiences have you had at Manchester that stand out? 

    Manchester has a huge focus on service! Being able to help underserved communities, such as the one where I was raised, is very fulfilling. Manchester allows you to develop as a complete person and not just someone who is focused on academics. 


    What are some advantages to living and studying in Fort Wayne? 

    Fort Wayne is a small town with a big city feel. As professionals, Fort Wayne offers a multitude of opportunities for students to learn, grow and be successful pharmacists. There are many places that allow students to shadow or become interns so they can get the real life experience. I am grateful for what this city offers in regard to pharmacy. 


    What drew you to pharmacy? 

    When I was a child, finding appropriate health care was always difficult and I want to change that. I chose pharmacy because pharmacists are the most accessible health care professionals and are medicine experts. Being a pharmacist will help me achieve my goal of reducing barriers to care for all people. 

    What else would you like to add? 
    Post-graduation, I want to go into ambulatory care setting with collaborative practice agreements. I want to optimize patient care, reduce hospitalization and readmission rates, and help my patients live a healthier life.
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  • Genesis Malin
    by User Not Found | Dec 16, 2019

    Genesis Malin, a junior psychology and criminal justice double major with a sociology minor, shares her career goals after graduation.

    What brought you to Manchester?”

    “I just felt at home right away. Everyone was really friendly and talking to everyone − it felt like they already knew me even though they didn’t. Plus, I received a really nice scholarship, which helps me save money to go home to Ohio and visit family.” 

    What is your favorite part about Manchester?”

    “I would say it’s the connections that I have, not only with other students, but with faculty and staff as well. I think when a lot of people think of college, they think of their friends who they’re close with, but I’m really close with professors who aren’t even in my major. I’m also close with a lot of staff members. I started working part-time in admissions this past summer, and Jake Huffman, the associate director for operations, was with me constantly, and he would come in and visit me at my other jobs, so now I call him my adult best friend.”

     “What else are you involved with on campus?”

    “I work in First Year Experience as an orientation assistant, which is an intern level position. I also work for counseling services as a Spartan Choices peer educator, for admissions as a Spartan ambassador, and in tutoring services as the Communications 110 tutor. I also work at New Market in town, and I’m a soccer coach for the rec team in town. For on-campus extracurricular, I’m a social media influencer, the social services club social media coordinator and the psychology society secretary.”

    What’s your favorite thing you’re involved with?”

    “I really do enjoy being an orientation assistant on campus. Through that job I help create programming for the first-year students coming in− so over the summer we plan Orientation Days, Welcome Week and things that impact first-years when they come to campus. I really like being able to have that impact on incoming students because my first week impacted me a lot − it’s what made me feel at home here. I like to try to give others that experience and make sure that we are being as welcoming to them as I was treated when I came here.”

    “What do you like about your majors?”

    “I like the in-depth learning that I get with both my psychology and criminal justice majors. The faculty are great about tying in current events to the material we are covering in class. It gives me a better understanding of the concepts and how they apply to real life.”

    “What do you hope to do after graduation?”

    “I hope to be a re-entry counselor in an adult prison, or a counselor in a juvenile prison. I want to help set people up for success in their future lives and to help them get in a positive mindset.”

  • Paige Dressler
    by User Not Found | Oct 16, 2019

    Paige Dressler, a senior social work major and sociology minor, gives an in-depth look at the social work major and the opportunities it provides.


    “When college searching, how did you choose Manchester University?”

    “I wanted [a college] close to home, and Manchester is about 45 minutes away, which is perfect. I came on a visit and [learned about] Manchester’s amazing Social Work Program. I already knew that was the area I wanted to study; so really the Social Work Program was the main thing that drew me here.”

    “What kinds of things are you involved with in the Social Work Program?”

    “Every senior in the social work program has to do a 420-hour field placement, which is similar to an internship. Right now, many seniors are interviewing to see where they will be in field placement next semester. I just got my placement actually − it’s at Daniel’s Place, a new nonprofit respite care facility in North Manchester. Parents or caregivers can drop off their kids or adults with disabilities, and they can stay at the facility for as many hours as needed until the caregiver can pick them up. People can pay as much or as little as they are able to for the service. They just opened in July so I’m really excited to work with them!

    “That sounds great! Have you been involved with the community of North Manchester before?”

    “Last year I started working with theAcorns Office of Volunteer Services, helping with the campus food pantry and clothing closet. I learned a lot and I’m now on the board of directors for the Manchester Fellowship of Churches, which consists of five programs: the North Manchester food pantry; the thrift store; REACH, which helps residents with utility and rent bills; Thursday’s Child, which has free clothes for children; and Open Table, which helps families deal with trauma. I am the student liaison between Manchester University and the board, so I pass information back and forth to help recruit volunteers for their programs. I love the people − they are like family to me.”

    “Can you tell me more about theAcorns volunteer opportunities?”

    “The Office of Volunteer Services hosts most of the volunteer activities on campus. This year we are planning a homelessness awareness night. We are going to get boxes and try to get students to sleep outside. We also host blood drives and other on-campus events, as well as having volunteers go into the North Manchester community. We also have the campus food pantry and clothing closet, so students can grab food and clothes. We also host the “U Can Crush Hunger” event, which is a food drive competition between us and other schools in the area, with the donations going toward both the North Manchester food pantry and our on campus pantry.”


    What is next for you after graduation?”

    “Today  I received an email about an internship in Texas after graduation. It’s through the organization Hands of Hope, and I would be living in a house with four other recent college graduates and four foster kids under the age of 6. I would be taking care of them, getting to them appointments − essentially being somewhat of a foster mom for a year. After that I don’t know, but I love all kinds of social work and I think I want to work with foster children or people with disabilities.”

  • Blake Moore
    by User Not Found | Sep 27, 2019

    Blake Moore ’18, recently returned to his alma mater as an admissions counselor. Learn more about his life after graduation and why he’s excited to once again call North Manchester his home.

    “What drew you to Manchester as a student?”

    “When I first considered college, one of my primary choices was Ball State University. My parents were both alumni and most students in my area chose BSU to further their education, so it seemed like the obvious choice for me. I went to campus with my father for an official visit, and during our tour, we approached the main intersection between class periods during lunchtime. It felt like there were five or six thousand people crossing the intersection – cars everywhere, people trying to run to lunch or class – I looked at my father and said, ‘I can’t do this. This is too big for me.’ After that, I started looking at smaller schools and Manchester happened to be one. I reached out for more information and I heard back right away, so I knew that they wanted me. I came to campus, and it instantly felt like home.”

    “What advice would you give to a prospective student considering Manchester?”

    “Make sure you get involved, whether that’s in community service, athletics or club life. Manchester is a place where you can make your own experience. You have the opportunity to do with it what you want. Students who sit around in their dorm room don’t get the full college experience, and they may not feel connected to the University. For those who are heavily involved, they feel connected to different people and get to experience the whole reason that higher education exists!”

    “What do you love about being an admissions counselor at Manchester?”

    “I love interacting with future students and being able to tell my story about Manchester. Being able to share my experience and my passion for Manchester University with students is vital to their decision. They also want to hear success stories that have come out of the university. I think we, as admissions counselors, are not only ambassadors of the university, but we’re also educators for students as they look for the right college for them.”

    “Are you excited to call North Manchester home, again?”

    “Yes! North Manchester is similar to where I grew up. It is a tight, small-town community, and everyone within the area is interconnected. The University and the town also have a special connection – community members are welcoming to our students, and our University continually gives back to North Manchester through community service. Looking back on my college search, the community and campus were the most important factors in a school for me.

    “What advice would you give to a student graduating from Manchester in May?”

    “Always be willing to look at different possibilities and know that there are options in your life that you had never considered. I always wanted to grow up and work in college athletics, but I quickly realized, after being at my prior job in Ohio, that it didn’t quite fit who I was as a person. However, working in a higher education outside of athletics was a better fit. Students should realize that once you leave college, it doesn’t necessarily matter what your degree is in, because there are a number of possibilities available that you had never considered or never even thought about! You should be willing to take a leap of faith. If you feel like you’re in a situation where you feel it’s time for a change, sometimes it is. You need to be able to listen to your heart and make that change when it feels appropriate.”

    “What’s something most people don’t know about you?”

    A lot of people don’t know that I have played the piano for 13 years, so I love classical music. I started when I was 10, and I still enjoy playing. It’s something I enjoy whether it’s just for myself or to play for an audience.

  • Julie Cogley-Pifko
    by User Not Found | Jul 11, 2019

    Julie Cogley-Pifko, assistant director of admissions and enrollment management for pharmacy programs, shares her advice for students considering Manchester’s programs.

    “What is your role at Manchester?”

    “I serve as the assistant director of admissions and enrollment management for pharmacy programs. This means that I attend recruitment events and help prospective students through the admissions process for the Fort Wayne campus programs− Doctor of Pharmacy, Master of Science in Pharmacogenomics, and Dual Degree, which combines both. I also have the opportunity to work with current undergraduate students through the Pre-Pharmacy Club at the North Manchester campus and current graduate and professional students through the Student Ambassadors Club.”

    “What advice would you give to students considering pharmacy school?”

    “Shadow, shadow, shadow! There are so many more areas within the pharmacy profession than most people realize. There are hospitals, long-term care facilities, doctor offices, independent pharmacies, industry, community pharmacies and more! I encourage students to take advantage of as many shadowing experiences as possible. My other piece of advice is for students to volunteer! Service is a big component of the University’s mission and also the mission of the Pharmacy Program.”

    “What is your favorite part of your job?”

    “I can’t pick only one favorite part of my job. During graduate school, I wasn’t sure what area within higher education I wanted to work in. At Manchester University, I am able to do all of the things I love the most −traveling, event planning and working with current students. It’s all my favorite part of my job!” 

    “What is your favorite Manchester moment?”

    “My favorite Manchester moment would be anytime I have the opportunity to event plan. In November, we had a multi-institution health professions night at the Fort Wayne campus. In April, we collaborated with area high schools to have a Spring Health Careers Fair hosted at Career Academy, with about 300 in attendance. The goal of both events was for students to learn about the various careers within health care, and it’s great being able to watch young people become excited about the future of healthcare.”

    “What is a fun, interesting fact about yourself?”

    “I’m a big Pittsburgh Penguin fan and I actually camped outside their arena all night to get hockey tickets! My brother and some of our friends drove down at midnight and set up camp chairs to get student rush tickets for the game the following day. We totally didn’t need to go down that early but it sure makes for a fun story, and we had a great time!”

  • Tom Smith
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Tom Smith, associate professor of pharmacy practice and pharmacogenomics, teaches real world concepts both in and outside the classroom. 

    What is one thing you hope students get out of your class?”

     “I try to focus on the idea that things aren’t always black and white, and that can be difficult when you’re introducing complex ideas. However, it’s important because I don’t want students to be surprised when they go into a [clinical] rotation. I want them to get real life experience, and say, ‘Oh, I guess things weren’t as easy as they seemed.’ I also want them to be able to walk out of my class and understand that there’s always something more to learn, evaluate, and to consider, because you really have to treat each person uniquely.” 

    Do you have an example of a time when a student realized this in practice?” 

    “It happens a lot during their fourth-year rotation. They take my course in their second year of pharmacy school, and I try to bring in stories of what I see with patients and try to present what a true patient looks like − and I think they get it, but it’s difficult to portray through lecture. It doesn’t truly hit them until they go out on rotation, see a patient, and then they come back and say, ‘Oh, you were right! You weren’t just making it up!’ That is why we have that last year of rotations where they can learn and see that firsthand.” 

    What is the most interesting part of pharmacogenomics (PGx) to you?” 

    “I think the most interesting part is that it’s not necessarily new, but it kind of is. You can go back years and years and find that we’ve known about genetics and how it relates to a drug response for a really long time. Most of what we want to do, in terms of applying it to people and getting it to where most people can access it, is still developing. It’s interesting to me that the majority of the articles we study came out this year or the previous year. There are not many textbooks that have everything we want all in one spot because there’s so much new information. What I find hopeful is that a lot of our graduates will be able to go be pioneers in this field.”

    I saw that you worked with psychiatric illness and substance abuse. How do you apply PGx to that area of interest?” 

    “One of the reasons I’m involved in the PGx program is my interest in psychiatry. It is probably one of the biggest fields in pharmacogenomics. We have many drugs that treat different psychiatric illnesses, but we don’t know when it’s best to use certain drugs. So, unfortunately, a lot of it is trial and error. We do our best to try to figure out which drug may be best for you, but it’s still a guessing game. Psychiatry is an area where we’re interested in starting to use this element of medicine. If we can drill down if there is something within your genetic makeup that tells us drug X is going to work over drug Y, it’ll be a breakthrough in the medical field.

    That applies to many different psychiatric illnesses – one of them could be addiction. There is a genetic link between developing certain addictions and one’s genes. If we can take that next step and observe the genetic link for treating these specific addictions, then that would be a huge game changer for millions of people who are struggling. We need to do something to treat these individuals better, and pharmacogenomics could play a role in that.”

     “How did you get interested in this field of work?” 

    “I’ve always been interested in psychiatry and neurology. After I completed my pharmacy curriculum, I completed a residency in those two areas, and pharmacogenomics wasn’t a large piece of it but it was always there. When I first saw individuals get the pharmacogenomics testing done, that’s when I realized something, it’s more than just theories and things done in a lab – this is something that can directly affect an individual. So I’ve always had it in the back of my mind, and we do a little bit of it at my practice site. Having a master’s program in pharmacogenomics was something that hasn’t been done anywhere and it was a great opportunity for me to get involved and do something unique.”

     “What advice would you give to people considering PGx?” 

    “If you’re someone who wants a challenge, is comfortable with not having a direct path, adaptable, enjoy taking on responsibilities, and want to be part of a change, I think the PGx program would be perfect for you. We have many individuals who have gone on to places where they didn’t have anyone with a similar program history since this program is so new. It’s kind of intimidating at first, and there is an element of the unknown with it. I think people, especially at Manchester, like that. It was the same thing with our first couple of pharmacy classes – they didn’t really know what to expect – it was a new school. they could go to somewhere that’s been established for 100 years, or they could come here where they would be the first one. We like those types of individuals, and those are the people I think we need in health care. We need people to do new things and break boundaries, and I think PGx offers that. If you’re someone who is really excited about that, you’re not going to match that in other programs.”

  • Jesse Langdon
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Jesse Langdon, a junior peace studies and political science major, from Columbus, Ind., shares how life at Manchester has given him real world experience.  

    “What are you involved with on campus?”

    “I’m involved in a lot of things! I’m on the executive board for the Kenapocomoco Peace Coalition, which is the peace studies club. I am the president of the Campus Interfaith Board, which does interfaith work on campus and organizes trips off campus. I’m an interfaith programmer for the Office of Religious Life, I’m on the executive board for Amnesty International Manchester chapter, I’m on two different faculty committees, including the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee (UCC), which oversees all changes or additions to undergraduate course offerings. Finally, I’m on the Undergraduate Liberal Arts Curriculum Committee (LARCC). It’s a lot of work, but I’m really happy to be a part of these committees because they allow me to give a student voice to the core programs.”

    “It sounds like you’re involved in a lot of different areas around campus. What has been a really rewarding experience so far at Manchester?” 

    “I wrote a paper last semester about the persecution that Bahá'ís face in Iran, which has been a continuous problem. Through my research, I figured out that there isn’t really a good database for reporting the religious affiliation of migrants and refugees. Because of that, I am going to work on developing a database that the international community can use to track different religious groups. For instance, if there is a large group of Bahá'ís leaving Iran, that can be an indicator to international human rights groups, as well as the United Nations, that there is religious persecution happening in Iran. It can be used as a tool to stop human rights abuses across the world.” 

    “What made you decide to get involved in religious studies?”

    “Through peace studies, and my life experiences in general, I have noticed that religion has a great propensity for peace and for violence− which is something that has always interested me − how people from the same religious background can have very different interpretations of their text. So I wanted to work on the peacebuilding aspect of faith work, and I believe that interfaith work creates really strong coalitions between members of different faith backgrounds, because it highlights similarities between worldviews and celebrates the strength in differences as well.” 

    “Who is a professor that has really impacted your time at Manchester?”

    “Wow. There are so many, and they’re all influential in my life. I would probably say Professor Williams, who is a political science professor. I took his Political Concepts and Ideologies course my first year, and I was the only first-year in the class, so that was very intimidating− plus the fact that it was my first political science course. It really got me to realize different aspects of what political science is, and broadened my mind to the political realm. Another professor would be Professor Staudenmaier, the new history professor. I’m currently in his recent American History course, and it’s been really interesting. He’s opening our eyes to new aspects of history that I haven’t ever thought of before− and he has helped our class reframe the civil rights movement and rethink politics during the 70s and 80s, which has been super interesting to me too.”

  • Gabby Anglin
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Gabby Anglin, a communication studies and political science double-major from Columbia City, Ind., discusses her role as Student Senate president and how she strives to represent her fellow Spartans.   

    “What are you involved with on campus?”

    “I have been involved with Student Senate since I was a first-year and I ran for vice president after only four months in the club. I was vice president for two years, and now I’m the president my senior year. I am also involved in Students Today, Alumni Tomorrow, which is the student group that works with the Advancement Office. I have chaired the Stewardship Committee, which oversees all of the donor events on campus. I’m overseeing the Senior Class Gift Committee, so I was able to decide what the senior class gift would be this year and will soon be unrolling the campaign to start getting donations. I’ve been involved with Residential Life for three years − I was a resident assistant in Oakwood for two years, and now I am the apartment coordinator in East Street Apartments.” 

    “Wow! That’s a ton of involvement! Can you tell me more about your role as Student Senate president?”

    “During my First-Year Orientation, I remember sitting in Cordier with my mom watching Opening Convocation. Jake Burns was Student Senate president at the time, and he stood behind the podium and said, ‘Hello, I’m the Student Senate president.’ And I said to myself, ‘I’m gonna do that.’ So when I got into Student Senate my first year, I watched Jake, I heard stories about past presidents and I realized that the position is different for everyone. For me, it is something that I take so seriously, knowing that I’m supposed to be the representative voice for the student body. Student Senate is a group that the Manchester administration go to when they need a student representative, which means the decisions that I make need to have the voices of all students behind me − not just mine, not just my friend group, not just the people I know, but all the different people on campus. This also means upholding Manchester’s values in everything I do, on and off campus. When I go different places and introduce myself as the Student Senate president, I know that by extension I am a representation of Manchester.” 

    “Why did you choose Manchester University?” 

    “I considered going to Purdue, but when I visited their campus it gave me a ton of anxiety because it was so big and there were so many people! Every email I received from Purdue was addressed to, ‘Applicant Number 40289,’ but when it came from Manchester, I was Gabby. Manchester even sent this little survey and one of the questions was, “What’s your favorite color?” I wrote down purple. After that, every letter I got from Manchester was handwritten in purple ink. Before I was even officially a Spartan, it was clear that they valued who I was as a person.”

    “What is something most people don’t know about you?”

    “I’m super into all the personality and typology tests! I know my Clifton’s Five Strengths; I know my enneagram type, which is a 4; I’m a rising Sagittarius with my moon in Virgo; my Myers-Briggs is an ISTJ −I am just obsessed! Self-awareness is one of my strengths and one of my downfalls, because it can be scary to know those things about yourself!”

  • Andy Vance
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Andrea “Andy” Vance, from Portage, Ind., is working to create her own individualized major in performing arts administration. She strives to leave her footprint at Manchester University, one theater production at a time.

    “What made you choose Manchester University?”

    “At first it was the study abroad opportunities. My mom is from the Philippines and I always wanted the chance to travel there and all around the world. Now that I’m here, I’m realizing the opportunities inside the classroom and the footprint I can leave at MU. I was a business management major, but now I’m in the process of becoming a performing arts administration major – and the only performing arts administration major at MU. My heart has always been in the performing and visual arts, so that’s the path I wanted to follow. Along with my major, I’m starting to revamp a few clubs and organizations for fellow art enthusiasts, and I love the work each club has done so far! I’m only a first-year but I hope to leave my mark here.”

    “What organizations are you working on revamping?”

    “I’m president of Artist’s Anonymous, and we just had our first event in December! There were a lot of people there and I’m very happy with the turnout. It was called “Art by the Fire.” I also just got presidency of Theatre Society, so I can’t wait to start working on that!”

    “You said your heart has always been in performing and visual arts. How did you become interested in that?”

    “I’ve been singing since before I could walk and have been in dance since I was little. I began theater in elementary school and stayed all the way up to high school, and that was when I found where my heart belonged–not technically onstage, but backstage. Being able to see a production – something you helped create – come to life in a magical way is a feeling I could never forget, and it drives me.”

    “What do you hope to do with your performing arts administration degree?”

    “With my degree, I’m hoping to be able to pursue work in a theater or auditorium, planning events or productions, or even working as a director for performing arts events or visual art events.”

    “What advice would you give high school seniors?”

    “I would say, look around [at different colleges] and see what opportunities they have for you to make an impact. I came to Manchester and I was like, ‘I’ll just do business management.’ Then I realized that’s not what I wanted to do. I asked around and when they didn’t have what I wanted, I was told I could create what I wanted. I would get to say that I’m the only performing arts administration major out of Manchester. There are more opportunities and chances here to make myself into something more. At other colleges, it would be so much harder. Being in oh-so-many clubs, art organizations and productions – that would be hard at a bigger college. Here, I’m able to meet with professors and advisors who want to work with me to get on a career path I love and make the most out of my college experience. They’re on your side. Simply, Manchester offers possibilities for me to achieve goals, with more flexibility and one-on-one attention than most other schools.”

  • Keiton Hall
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Keiton Hall, a sport management, accounting and finance triple major, chats about how he’s able to balance life as a student-athlete and academics. 

    “I saw you’re studying in Manchester’s new Master of Accountancy Program. Can you tell me more about that?” 

    “I came [to MU] as a sport management major, but my sophomore year Professor Twomey encouraged me to pick up accounting as a second major. Then Manchester announced that they’re offering the Master of Accountancy Program, and I would be able to earn my bachelor’s and a master’s degree in four years! Since I was already planning to come back for a fifth year to complete my accounting degree, I decided that I wanted to pursue the master’s degree. I’ll be taking 18 credit hours each semester and then a four-credit-hour January session class. It’ll be hard work, but I know these professors and I know they’re going to help me succeed.” 

    “You don’t just study accounting – you’re a triple major! What kind of career do you want after graduation?” 

    “Hopefully, anything I want! This summer, I’ll be interning at RSM in Indianapolis and I’m hoping that experience will lead to an entry level position after college. I’d like to stay in public accounting for awhile; but down the road, I’d like to pair up my sport management knowledge with whatever career I choose to pursue. That could be working my way into a front office position for a sports organization or a sports clothing brand – both are definitely something I could see myself doing one day!”

    “What’s your dream sports organization?” 

    “­Something in the NBA because I’ve always been a big basketball fan. Something in Atlanta would be awesome because there are some big market teams down there. But really, just wherever the best opportunity presents itself. Being the Intramural Intern has given me fantastic experience with people and sport management, and has allowed me to bring new events and experiences to students- like the first ever Jan Term Games. Ultimately, I want to work some place where I can leave my mark. I don’t want to live and not be remembered for anything. I know it sounds kind of cliché, but it’s just something I want to do to make people’s lives around me better, and so that when I leave someplace they think, ‘oh yeah! He was here and it was great.’ It may sound like a cliché, but clichés actually turn out to be good if you go out and actually do them.”­­­­           

    “How do you juggle being a student-athlete with everything else you do?” 

    “Very carefully! A lot of it has to do with time management. Since my first year here, I’ve had to learn how to be disciplined with my time in terms of getting all my classwork done and still committing the amount of time that I want to basketball. Typically on Sundays, I look at everything I have coming up for the week and what assignments I have to get done. So doing four years of it has been a time for me to grow, which is awesome, but it’s been testing as well, because it is a lot, and there are only 24 hours in a day. It’s been a lot, and there are times where I wish I could sleep more! But everything great requires some sacrifice, so I can see this as something I’ll sacrifice now in order to set myself up for great things later.” 

    “What advice would you give to high school athletes on their way to Manchester?” 

    “Make sure you love your sport! There have been times when if I didn’t love [basketball] and didn’t have goals, I would have quit. It’s a grind completely different from high school because you’re on your own and you don’t have anyone to hold you accountable. So definitely make sure you love the sport you’re going into and set goals for yourself so you’re constantly being pushed and pulled toward an achievement, but also find time to get involved with other things on campus. There are a lot of great things on this campus; for example, this past year I was the vice president for the College of Business Club, so that really stretched me in terms of what I was involved in and who I got to interact with. I built so many great connections here through both basketball and being involved with the College of Business, as well. So be committed but don’t have blinders on. You’ll definitely want to put your education first, that’s why it’s called a student-athlete and not athlete-student. Just remember to plan your work, and then work your plan. If you do that, everything will take care of itself!”

  • Cheyenne Heath
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Cheyenne Heath, from Liberty, Ind., is an educational studies major with a concentration in psychology and sociology. Cheyenne’s participation with Manchester’s Center for Service Opportunities helped her realize her dream of working with children with autism, bettering the future of education and fighting for social justice.

    How did you become interested in education?

    “When I was in high school, I attended vocational school and went for early childhood education. I wasn’t really focused on the young children; I was focused on the administration side of education – which helped me decide to be an elementary education major. However, I ended up changing [my major] over the summer to educational studies, because I found out that I actually want to work with kids who have disabilities and provide their families with effective resources on how to handle having a person in your family with a disability. I’ve been working primarily on the autism spectrum and, in the future, would like to work as a behavioral analyst, which involves testing kids to see if they have autism and providing families with resources to help them understand that your child isn’t broken, but actually your child is a wonderful, smart, gifted individual. I feel like providing the families with crucial information is so important.”

    How did you get involved in working with children who have autism?”

     “I actually got involved with the Pathways program through the Center for Service Opportunities [CSO] and spent a summer in Iowa working at Camp Courageous, a camp for people with disabilities - so that’s mental, physical, across the spectrum of disabilities. I spent plenty of my weeks being a camp counselor, but there was one week I enjoyed the most called “Just for You” week. I was told this would be the hardest week because you are given one camper with a severe disability that requires one-on-one care and attention. I had already been spending a lot of one-on-one time with my campers because many of my campers were in wheelchairs and required assistance to move around camp; so, I felt prepared. I ended up paired with Tim, who is a wonderful individual who loves to climb, play jokes and, if he could run away, he probably would. It was kind of a challenge the first day, trying to figure out how he works, because he runs on his own time and does his own thing. Then I realized by the second day that I knew who he was and how to handle him. Long story short, our week consisted of being on a train every day for three hours! We sat on this stationed caboose and he would just sit on it, hang from it, climb on it, and we’d sit there for hours. While sitting there, I just realized that working with those sorts of individuals that are on the spectrum is a wonderful thing and it takes people who have the patience and care and the proper love to do it. I think that was when I realized I could do this as a career. I could definitely work with kids like Tim.”

     “Can you tell me more about the Pathways program?”

     “Pathways is a 6 to 10-week-long summer program, at locations around the world, where you are given $800 to live off of and you spend your time volunteering for a cause you’re passionate about. There are opportunities in Texas, the United Kingdom, Iowa and a lot of other places around the world. I originally planned to go abroad but the other spot I would’ve worked at was a special needs school, and I would’ve worked with individuals that needed extra care and guidance in a boarding school setting; ultimately, I wanted a camp setting so I chose to work in Iowa.”

    “What other CSO opportunities have you taken advantage of?”

    “The volunteering. I really love working with the Manchester Early Learning Center! I love working with them and the people that are dedicated to providing a holistic experience to the children that go to the preschool there. I also volunteered at the community dinners over the summer, which were fun and I got to meet community members. I really love the animal shelter. It’s super fun and is perfect if you need a fun volunteering experience and want to make a difference. There’s a dog I love named Twinkie; if I could adopt her by the end of the year I would love to.

    Why did you choose Manchester?”

    “I chose Manchester because my grandpa said it was a tight knit community and I would be in a hometown similar to my hometown. I felt safe at Manchester knowing I wasn’t going to be on a huge campus where I was just a number. Manchester doesn’t make you just a number, it lets you have an individual experience. You’re a person. Throughout my time at Manchester, I’ve worked with CSO and in the education department, and I got to become such good friends with education professors. That’s why I chose Manchester, because those professors care about you and want your education to be valued, and for you to have value in your experience here.”


  • Jessica Beal
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Jessica Beal, from Westfield, Ind., talks about life as an accounting major and what’s in store for her after graduation.

    How did you become interesting in accounting?”

    “In high school, I wanted to study pre-med to be an anesthesiologist, but then I took Chemistry and realized it was awful. I did what any college student does – I talked to my mom, and she mentioned accounting. I had a family member who was a CPA for a hospital, and he told me that I could still do everything that I wanted to do – help people – without all of the blood and guts. I took my first accounting course my senior year in high school, and I fell in love with it! My accounting teacher convinced me to go into accounting in college, and she gave me informational pamphlets about salaries and job possibilities, so I went into it and came into college as an accounting major and have excelled at it ever since.”

    “What made you choose the audit track over tax?”

    “I don’t know, honestly. It’s still up in the air a bit. I had my audit class and decided I want nothing to do with audit. I didn’t understand the class and I struggled with the material. I became really nervous because that summer I had an internship lined up with the Indiana State Board of Accountants and it revolved around audit! But I went into the internship with an open mind, got the experience and fell in love with audit. Then this past January, during the busy tax season, I went into my internship with KSM in Indianapolis – all audit – and loved it. But they needed help up in tax and I figured an accountant needs to know how to do their own taxes plus it would be great experience. I went up there and all of the Manchester alumni did their best to push me over to tax! So now I’m 50/50 on what I want to do. I really like audit because I like interacting with people and looking at the puzzle aspect of accounting; however, I like tax because it makes you think.”

    What are your plans after graduation?”

    “I will start studying for my CPA in the spring of this year, and I’ll sit for the CPA starting in May. Hopefully I will pass all of my tests before I start working for KSM in October. I’m super excited about that!”

    What makes Manchester’s accounting program unique”?

    “I came here, although I was originally planning to go to IUPUI because it was so close to home, but I wasn’t too thrilled about it. I came on a visit during a break when no one was on campus, and it was snowy and cold - but I looked at my mom and I told her I need to go here. My tour guide had told me that the CPA pass rate was 20 percent higher here than the national average, and knowing my test-taking skills, that just pushed me here more. Over the years, professors have showed how much they care about you and your success. I don’t think I would be where I am today if it weren’t for the professors pushing me to be my best self. This is a place where you prepare for your future and you’re surrounded by people who want to see you succeed.”

    What advice would you give to students considering an accounting major?”

    “It’s a lot of work! It helps to study with other accounting majors because some understand topics you don’t and vice versa. Intermediate accounting and tax are probably the toughest classes you’ll take, but you’ll get through it. Don’t be afraid to ask questions! The professors here care about you and will go the extra mile to see you succeed. Ultimately, all of the hard work you put into this major will payout in the end.

    What’s a fun fact about yourself?”

    “I broke my nose on my 18th birthday and had plastic surgery because of that. I shared that during orientation week with Professor Ogden. A few days later, I was in his Foundations of Business class when he was taking attendance and he didn’t call off my name. Of course, I got nervous and raised my hand to make sure he knew I was here and I was in the right class! He said he remembered my fun fact and he knew me! Who knew a broken nose would be so memorable?”


  • Patrick Hallis
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Patrick Hallis, first-year pharmacy student from Redfore, Mich., originally from Beirut, Lebanon, shares his love of helping others through volunteering and reflects on how Manchester’s Pharmacy Program gives him the tools to impact his community.

    “How did you become interested in Pharmacy?”

    “Throughout my undergrad, I always wanted to be an MD, but in my journey I decided that wasn’t for me, and I found another calling. I got a job at CVS Pharmacy and while working there, it just clicked, ‘why not pharmacy?’ I really thought that I could do something, make a change, and have an impact on the field. My district managers [at CVS] and everyone around me that I spoke to was like, ’Manchester, Manchester, Manchester, it’s a great school!’ so I applied! It was my first choice, and I got in! It’s been really good; I love it.”

    “What do you enjoy most about pharmacy?”

    “What I love about pharmacy is that any person who needs help or health care attention can just go to a pharmacy and speak to a pharmacist, someone who can help them and advise them and tell them what to expect. It’s an alternative to waiting and paying for a doctor’s appointment. And a lot of people aren’t educated on what to expect from a medication. I’ve met people who are baffled by what a prescription is – simple things like that – and I want to change that because I love people and want to help them.”

    “Do you know what area of pharmacy you’d like to work in?”

    “Not really. I would work in retail just because I like that direct patient contact, but I could have an impact in hospitals or in ambulatory care as well. The field may change, and what I want may change through my experiences, so for now. I’m just experiencing everything. During my undergrad, I really didn’t get the chance to be involved or go out and see what things I could do in the community. I was working 62 hours a week with a full load of classes. Coming here, I’m setting myself up and taking every opportunity to be a part of the community or do service because it opens up so many doors! You learn so much about your community and about people, and that plays a big factor in being able to help people in the health care field. Just knowing who people are, how they function and the way they think helps. I love it.”

    “You mentioned you’re taking advantage of a lot of opportunities, what are some of those opportunities?”

    “I love that this school is all about the humanistic approach, pro-community and volunteering, helping and caring, because we’re missing a big part of that in the world. We have to care for each other. Day one of orientation, we were required to go volunteer. Most people were like, ‘why do we have to do this?’ but after we did it, I found the majority agreed that it was an awesome experience. We went to a food pantry to help out there, and it was just amazing. They had a pharmacy where people could donate over the counter meds, and people would have a voucher and be able to pick up things like Tylenol, bandages, diapers – anything that one would need. I was asking them so many questions about what they need and how we can help. Not everyone can afford that stuff, and it’s sad to see. I saw how people had to come wait in line for canned goods and simple stuff that many people take for granted. From there I thought ‘I have to keep doing stuff like this.’ I did a flu vaccine at a hospital, where we vaccinated many people who came in. My classmates and I set up teams in our class to be a part of the #UCanCrushHunger campaign at MU and helped promote it. We even created a group where we walked around blocks to collect canned goods to donate. There was also a Day of Service, and I think that was awesome. So a lot of opportunities! People had to make a portfolio about what they’ve done so far and then present it to the other students and faculty members, which was so important. I think it was great because you could highlight what you’ve learned and why it’s important, and seeing you do that is going to spark some inspiration in someone else’s brain.”

    “What are you looking forward to in the next three years?”

    “I take it day by day, but I always aim to make progress and build upon what I’ve done so far. I feel this first semester was a learning curve, a rough patch while trying to adapt, but I feel like next semester I’ll be able to go for what I really want and focus on the side of community service. Now I have the hang of things and know what’s expected, and it will be better and I’ll be able to do more.”

    “Anything else you’d like to add?”

    “To be honest, I’ve always had this feeling that I want to make a change, and I don’t know why, but for some reason it feels like this is it, and Manchester is where I can do it. I’ve spoken with my mom and all that, and I told her ‘I don’t know what it is about this place, but I feel like something great is coming, and it’s going to happen.’”


  • Delaney Ray
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Delaney Ray, a double-major in psychology and sociology, shares stories from her life-changing study abroad experience in Ireland.  

    “When did you study abroad?”

    “I studied abroad the fall semester of 2017 in Ireland. It was stellar. I had never left the country before. In fact I had never even flown before, so it was all of these new experiences at once. I had never been away from home for that long or been that far away, so it was kind of weird and crazy but fun and exciting.” 

    “What advice would you give to students who want to study abroad?” 

    “Do it. I know some students come into college thinking ‘I want to study abroad,’ but that was not me. I came in as a first-year thinking, ‘No way! I am not doing that.’ I started thinking about it my sophomore year, but I thought I didn’t have enough time. But Thelma Rohrer, the director for the office of study abroad, who’s the greatest person ever, just jumped into it with me. It was completely worth it. It’s literally the greatest time. Plus, everyone back home becomes kind of obsessed with you, checking in on you and asking you to post photos. I felt like I was famous!”

    “What life lessons did you learn in Ireland?

    “I learned how to be independent. I learned how to do things on my own like cooking – of course I still can’t cook whatsoever. I ate scrambled eggs for every meal, every day. I learned not to limit myself, because there were so many times I told myself ‘I can’t do this; I don’t know if I can go; I’ve never done anything like this before,’ but I did it and it was great. 

     “Above all, learning about a new culture. It was an adjustment to the weird driving and the strange scenery. It was a good culture shock though, and there were only a few times when someone would say a phrase that I didn’t understand. The first time I went grocery shopping, I was looking at some sausage, because I really like to eat sausages, and I was looking for a breakfast sausage. One said black pudding and one said white pudding … so I had to ask somebody what the difference was. One guy walked up, and he could tell that I wanted to ask a question, and he clearly did not want to talk to me, so I bothered him anyway. He told me to get the white pudding; the black pudding has oatmeal and weird stuff in it. Also, I got pizza quite a bit, and frequently they put corn on pizza! And I’m like, I’m from Indiana! The corn state! That’s not a thing! But it was actually good!” 

    “What is your favorite memory from Ireland?”

    One weekend, a group of friends and I decided to go to London. Flights in Europe are super cheap, so it’s easy to travel. We bought tickets for a futball game and I had never been to a big futball game before, so I was excited! I felt all big and bad, so I bought a hat and scarf for one of the teams, and even though I have absolutely no idea what’s happening in the futball world, I still am a huge fan and support that team. It was so much fun and a great experience! We also did those very stereotypical touristy things – we saw Platform 9 ¾ from Harry Potter, visited 221B Baker St. from Sherlock Holmes, ate fish and chips, saw Buckingham Palace – I kept waiting for one of the princes to come out and propose to me, but neither did – we saw Big Ben and a lot of cool other stuff! London is unbelievably beautiful and I’m so lucky that I was able to study abroad in a country that allowed me to travel to other places and see and experience so much more.”

  • Emma Voelker
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Emma Voelker, from Cincinnati, Ohio, is a senior majoring in elementary education with a focus in high ability and minoring in psychology. Emma has big plans for the future of education and it all started with a song.

     “How did you know that you wanted to teach?”

    “In third grade, I was struggling with multiplication and our math teacher taught us these multiplication songs. They were like basic nursery rhymes from two all the way up to nine, and I loved the songs. I would go home and I would sing the songs for my parents.

     Eventually, my teachers started to use me as a student aid, and would tell me to go help other students with math and other subjects. I think I’ve always had that teacher instinct. I love kids, and I knew I wanted to work with them. When I was in high school, I took a teaching prep course and I absolutely loved it. It made me realize that this is what I want to do.”

     “What does the role of a teacher mean to you?”

               “The role of a teacher means being there for kids and showing them that it’s okay to struggle, because everyone struggles. But we have to work on getting better. I want my students to know that I’m there for them if they don’t have support at home or with friends – that no matter what, I’m there for them, so they can feel comfortable coming and talking to me about anything and everything.

     The role of a teacher means being an advocate for education because there are so many things wrong with policies surrounding education. I want to show people that there are good teachers – teachers that care and want their students to succeed.”

     “What opportunities have you had within the Education Department here at Manchester?”

               “Inside the classroom, starting freshman and sophomore years, you do observation hours, and then junior year, you start with a program called Response to Intervention. You go into a classroom and you have a group of students to work with. But, we did something completely new last spring semester. Half of the junior class went to the intermediate school and we got a group of fifth-graders. It was a whole new experience for us. We were used to working with the young kids, and then we get placed in the intermediate school, and I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, these kids talk back to me!’ So there were many times I would go to Professor Stacy Stetzel and be like, ‘I don’t know what to do here – help me!’ That experience gave me an insight into every student.

     Fall semester of senior year, we have two classrooms we visit. One is in Fort Wayne at Lindley Elementary and the other classroom is our student teaching placement, which we visit quite frequently. For me, my student teaching placement is Madison Elementary in Warsaw. Throughout the fall, working with my students at Madison Elementary will really help me build relationships with them.”

    Outside of the classroom, we do a lot of volunteering. Last year, I volunteered with the Undergrad Lit Council, and helped with a reading night. There are all kinds of great volunteer opportunities with kids, like tutoring in the elementary school and after school programs.

     “What is some advice you have for fellow college students?”

               “I would advise all students, especially education students, to get involved, whether it’s with SEA [Student Education Association] or the Undergrad Lit Council or anything in the Education Department. It really does help. You don’t have to be a part of education; I would say this to any person of any major. It looks really good on a resume, and if you get to your senior year and look back and you haven’t been involved, I think you will regret it. Once you do get involved, you realize how much it offers.”


  • Lucas Dargo
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Lucas Dargo, assistant professor of exercise science and athletic training, discusses Manchester’s Master of Athletic Training Program and his advice for current students.

    “How did you become interested in athletic training?”

    I was a manager for the basketball team when I was a junior in high school, and I sat right next to the athletic trainer all the time. We had a collision of three athletes where they were diving for a ball and all three of them lost teeth. I remember it being very bloody, and I told the athletic trainer, ‘I am so glad I’m never going to be an athletic trainer. Your job sounds terrible.’ Fast forward a couple years, and he actually ended up working for Ball State and preparing me to be an athletic trainer, ironically enough.

    In my senior year [of high school] I had a new athletic trainer, and she was the one that just kept saying ‘Hey, I know you want to teach but have you thought about athletic training?’ and she kept pushing. I met Manchester’s head athletic trainer at Ball State, and I decided my senior year that this is what I want to do. All along, I thought I was learning a lot of reasons why I didn’t want to be an athletic trainer, but it turned out that I was always meant to do this. I still can’t believe I have been certified for over five years and have been a practicing athletic trainer. It goes by so fast.”

     “What are you most looking forward to as our MAT program grows?”

               “I am most looking forward to growing our cohorts, building our program, increasing our enrollment and developing new clinical partnerships. There’s a lot of growth [in the athletic training field] that’s going to happen in the next year, and I want that growth to reflect at Manchester because that’s what I’m here for.”

     “What would you want prospective students to know about our master’s program?”

               “Our master’s program is being taught by top notch individuals, and I don’t just say that because of myself. Between Jeff Beer, Dr. Huntington (our dean) and Erin Foreman, who is our head athletic trainer – between the four of us, we have a great deal of experience as practicing clinicians and so we can really bring that experience from the field into the classroom.”

     “What advice would you give to the current master’s students?”

               “My current advice is hang in there! I promise that it’s all going to pay off. Everything that we have you doing right now, there is a purpose behind it. We’re so thankful you chose Manchester and allowed us to give you this education.”


  • Joe Swartz
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Joe Swartz, from Waterloo, Ind. is a senior majoring in mathematics and software engineering.  He shares his knowledge of software engineering and the projects he’s been able to work on.

    “How did you become interested in software engineering?”

    “I took a math elective my first year called Scientific Computing, and in the class we used some basic programming skills such as loops and ‘if statements,’ and I became fascinated with problem solving using computers. As a result, I took the Foundations of Computer Science courses and fell in love with software engineering.”

    “What are loops and ‘if statements?’”

    “A loop is basically a way to run a certain set of commands until a given condition is satisfied. An ‘if statement’ is kind of like a trap door –  if a certain condition is met, the commands inside will run or the program skips over the commands.”

    Is there an area of software engineering in which you have a special interest?”

    “I really like backend development because that is the meat of any program – it’s really everything that controls the buttons you click and what not.”

    “What kind of projects have you been able to do with your major?”

    “As of now, I have been a part of two projects that are actually going to be used outside of receiving a grade. One was for a Facebook Messenger bot that may be used by the Manchester marketing department to assist in handling questions that people send in via [Facebook] Messenger. For that project, I was a part of the development team and was able to learn a lot. The other is a grading system that will be used by Robin Mitchell, assistant professor of computer sciences, to assist him in grading projects from his foundations courses. I was the ‘scrum master’ for this one, and had many enjoyable, long nights trying to get our program to work.”

    “What is a ‘scrum master’?”

    “A scrum master is the leader in ‘agile scrum,’ and they are in charge of running the meetings, keeping the team on track and communicating with the customer or who we’re creating the product for.”

    “Why did you choose MU?”

    “One of my best friends from high school had applied here and talked me into doing the same. Long story short, I ended up coming on a football visit and fell in love with the campus.  I grew up in a small town, so North Manchester felt like home, and the population here is small enough that it felt like I’d be able to find my place among the MU family.”

    “What is your favorite Manchester memory?”

    “Hands down the Otho Winger Experience. I love seeing a different, rock ‘n roll side of my professors.”


  • Adrian “Robbie” Johnson
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Adrian "Robbie" Johnson, from Indianapolis, Ind., is majoring in exercise science and minoring in coaching. He shares how he is able to excel on and off the basketball court.

    “Tell me about your internship.”

    “My internship is with Champions Academy, which is run by Joey Burton. The gym that we work out of is in Zionsville, Ind., and we call it ‘The Trenches.’ My job is to assist with the workouts by either playing defense or offense, rebounding, passing and giving advice to players who are working out.”

    “What would an average day at your internship look like?”

    “At 8 a.m., GR3 [Glenn Robinson III] is usually our first workout and I play defense, rebound and passAt 9 a.m., either a college or professional player works out, and I do the same. At 10 a.m., other college or professional players come in for skill work and I compete in these games most days. From 1 to 8 p.m. there are one hour sessions of individual workouts with high school, middle school and elementary school kids, and I play with them.”

    “You said that you got to play with Glen Robinson III – what is it like to be working with pro athletes?”

    “When I first met him, I was nervous because I wanted to make a good first impression. But, there was no need to be nervous because he’s one of the nicest people you’ll meet. You might have seen the video of him dunking over me on my Instagram. I think that shows you how much I trust him. Working with professionals is something that I’ve dreamed of since I was a little kid. A lot of the guys that work out with Joey, I’ve watched them in AAU tournaments, high school games or college games since I was younger. Working with them honestly motivates me going into my senior season year. I definitely watch every move because I plan on stealing them and using them for myself.”

    “Besides GR3, what other pros, if any, have you had the opportunity to meet with?”

    Yogi Ferrell, Edmond Sumner, Alex Poythress, Trevon Bluiett, Kelan Martin, PJ Thompson, Tyler Wideman, Dakota Mathias and a ton more.

    “This seems like an awesome opportunity. How did you discover this internship?”

    “It was easier than one would think. I was scrolling through Instagram before class one morning and came across one of Joey’s videos. I thought to myself, ‘That would be an awesome way to spend my summer!’ After class, I messaged him on Instagram and he replied very fast – the rest kind of fell into place from there.”

    “How do you think this internship experience will benefit you in the future?”

    “After graduation, I would love to get into coaching basketball at the college or high school level and help kids get better at basketball. One day, I want to become a head coach at the college level. If I have the opportunity to have a professional career, I would definitely explore it. I think the internship experience helps me in multiple ways. I’m learning first hand from a person who genuinely cares about improving his clients. It’s also great to learn from someone that sees the little things or the small details in the game of basketball. Like myself, he actually studies the game and watches everything. Throughout the summer, I’ve seen how much work Joey puts into his company. We call it ‘The Grind’ because he’s at the gym from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. almost every day. I really think I could go on for days about what I learned this summer.”


  • Engy Kheir
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Engy Kheir,a P4 student from Orlando, Fla., shares how she uses pharmacy to connect and improve the lives of her patients.

    “Is there an area of pharmacy in which you have a special interest?”

    “When I first started out I really wanted to do retail, working as a pharmacist for a CVS or Walgreens, but I just started my rotations last month and my first rotation was in ambulatory care and I absolutely fell in love with it! So, now my mind is going back and forth between retail and ambulatory care.”

    “Can you tell me more about what ambulatory care is?”

    “Ambulatory care focuses a lot on the one-on-one with the patient. You’re able to see them more often and work alongside them to make their medication therapy as optimal as possible. So, if someone is on 10 medications, I would evaluate their therapy to see if this is the best we can do for them and potentially make changes. So it’s going back and forth, problem-solving, and it’s a much slower pace than you would see in a retail setting. In the long run, you really get to see the changes you make in someone’s life and, ultimately, that’s why I’m doing this.”

    “What drew you to pharmacy?”

    “When I was younger, I’d hear tales that pharmacists just put pills in a box, but then I learned that there’s much more. You’re making a change in someone’s life, and pharmacists have always been the go-to for patients – whereas for a physician’s office you have such a limited time with them that you’re not getting that interaction. With this career, I’m potentially making a bigger difference overall. Patients come in and we have a 45 minute session to talk to them and ask questions, like, ‘Hey, what’s your diet look like? Do you smoke? Have you thought about quitting smoking? Are you exercising?’ Just the different factors in their life that make them who they are and not just looking at a list of medications and making recommendations off that. We can customize their therapy based on their habits and what would really work for them.”

    “What recommendations do you have for talking to people about medication?”

    “Definitely have empathy toward the patient because most of them don’t understand the extent of their condition. A couple weeks ago, I was talking to a patient with diabetes and we had a conversation about diabetes, how his condition affects his body, and what his medications can potentially do for him. When we finished he said, ‘Wow, nobody has ever sat down and talked to me about all this.’”

    “How long had the patient been diabetic?”

    “About 15 years! And he said it was the most helpful session he ever had. So my biggest recommendation is to definitely take it slow. Also, try to involve them in the process by asking them what they think they’re capable of doing. If they’re smoking a pack of cigarettes a day, ask if they can cut that down. How many a day can we cut it down to until they completely quit?”

    “What drew you to the Manchester Pharmacy Program?”

    “I grew up in Florida and when I started applying to pharmacy school, I had several interviews, but when I came to Manchester, I absolutely loved it. It was such a great environment and I felt like everyone cared. They were just so nice and always trying to make conversation. I felt very welcomed, which was huge for someone like me, who was moving out of her parents’ house for the first time. And then the class sizes, because they’re so small, you get that one-on-one interaction with the professors. When you walk down the hall, people know who you are and it is much more intimate. You don’t walk into a lecture hall of 500 people, which is what I had for my undergrad, and it was never personable for me, but here they know your story and why you’re here, and they tailor to you. That’s why I think I’ve learned so much more here compared to a class size of 500 in an auditorium style seating.”

  • Nick Rush
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Nick Rush, from Terre Haute, Ind., is a junior majoring in sport management and marketing. He shares his advice for balancing work, school and athletics.

    “What are you involved with on campus?”

    “I’m a first baseman on the baseball team and I’m in four clubs: College of Business club, where I’m the program committee director, STAT (Students Today, Alumni Tomorrow), Student Senate and then as a side of Student Senate, I’m on the Student Senate Student Relations Committee. And then I also have three jobs on campus: sports information student assistant,a Student Orientation Leader, Spartan ambassador and I’m also a social media ambassador.”

    “Why do you take part in so many activities on campus?”

    “I like having more memories – more experiences – and I feel like everything I do is something that will help me later in life. College of Business, for example, helps me with networking. STAT helps me with connecting and networking, but also having the opportunity to talk with people from other generations and not just people my age. And baseball has allowed me to challenge myself and play the game I love along the way. Each club or activity I’m involved with helps me develop more as a person and learn, which is exactly what college is all about!”

    “What is one of your favorite memories from playing baseball?”

    We went down to Myrtle Beach as a baseball spring trip. Basically, we went down there and we played six games against teams from New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia. I really enjoyed going down there, and that was one of my favorite trips from baseball because we got to play right next to the beach with palm trees in the background. We ended up 3-3, which is a better start than we had last year. The improvement shows the kind of practice effort we had and the talent that we have this year. Plus, I hit my first college grand slam! Overall, it was a great trip.”

    “What is one lesson that baseball has taught you?”

    “Time management! That’s for sure. You don’t know how busy you are until you get into the season. You have to figure out when you can work, when you can eat, when you can do your homework and when you can relax. Once you get in the flow of things, it gets easier, but you have to find that flow. But above all, I absolutely love the sport. I’ve found a group of guys that have made my college experience better than I could have ever imagined. We do everything together and I wouldn’t have it any other way.”


  • Eva Escobedo
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Eva Escobedo, second-year pharmacy (P2) student, discusses what it means to be a first-generation college student and how she strives to represent Latina women in pharmacy.

    “What interested you in our pharmacy program?”

    “While I was studying at the University of California Davis, I took a course in pharmaceutical chemistry. It was a brand new field of interest for me that changed my perception of pharmacy. Up to that point, when I thought of pharmacy, I thought of someone standing behind a counter dispensing pills all day. But it is so much more than that! And [here] I’m able to learn about pharmacy while also learning about different cultures and growing.”

    “How has surrounding yourself with different cultures affected you?”

    “I think Manchester is its own little cultural hub. We just had our international fair and we were able to see and learn about cultures from all over the world in one small building. And I think that’s so important to share and learn about cultures outside of your own.  

    “Is there an area of pharmacy that interests you most?”

    “I knew I always wanted to end up in the healthcare field, and this program has really helped guide me to where I’m supposed to me. I have a special interest in helping Latinos, being that Spanish is my first language. I want to target that population and be a part of its growth. There’s this huge barrier in [understanding] medical terminology with a lot of people, and it’s even harder for people who don’t speak English as their first language. And being a first-generation college student, I’m able to gain a different perspective.”

    “What does it mean to you to be a first-generation college student?”

    My parents were born in Mexico and they immigrated to the United States. My dad works in construction and he works really grueling hours, sometimes overnight, in temperatures over 100 degrees. And he never, ever complains. When [my brothers, sisters and I] see him come home super tired, he’d always just say, ‘I’m making sure you build a better future for yourselves. Stay in school!’ And now I strive to be an example that anything is possible. I’m the oldest of six, I’m a Chicana [a Mexican-American woman] and I like to bring awareness to our culture. I’m almost halfway done through the [pharmacy] program and I want to be an example to future generations.”


  • Rebecca Ullom-Minnich
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Rebecca Ullom-Minnich, Junior Bio-Chem and Spanish Major from Moundridge, Kansas

    “What did you decide to come to Manchester?”
    “I’m Church of the Brethren, so I had been presented to about it many times growing up. I knew I wanted to go out of state somewhere, so I started looking at different colleges out here, and I decided to come visit and I really liked the science program that they had, and I talked to some of the professors, and I kind of got a little bit of the feel for the community.”

    “Why did you decide to major in bio-chem and Spanish?”
    “Well I’ve always wanted to be a veterinarian; I knew that since kindergarten. In high school I had a really good Spanish teacher who was really passionate about it, and she got me interested in how Spanish language affects the culture of a people and how the language influences the way people think. So I started really getting interested in Spanish and I learned more about it and then we had an exchange student from Ecuador come and live with us for a year. That kind of pushed me over the edge and I figured, I want to study abroad while I’m in college, and if I study abroad I can do it in Ecuador or Spain or somewhere and that gets me a Spanish major pretty easily. I’m working on my application to study abroad in Ecuador right now, hopefully next spring and fall.”

    “Do you know what you want to do after graduation?”
    “I’m still thinking veterinarian, I’m kind of starting to focus on wildlife rehabilitation, so I’ve been in contact with a couple rehab centers, trying to figure out if I could maybe go get some experience there. That’s still my plan.”

    “What’s been your favorite class at Manchester so far?”
    “My Jan Term this year, because we went to France with my social psychology class and that was really cool, just kind of immersing ourselves in the culture, learning a little bit of a new language, and kind of how social psychology influences people all around the world in different cultures. My favorite memory from that trip would be in the evenings we’d all go out to dinner together most of the time, and kind of the sense of community that we developed was really cool, all the laughing and bonding that happened.”

    “Are there any classes you’re looking forward to taking?”
    “I’m really looking forward to being able to take classes outside my major when I’m abroad, I was really into art in high school and I haven’t had time to take art classes while I’ve been getting my bio-chem requirements done before I go to Ecuador. I’m kind of looking forward to taking art classes or something like that.”

    “What are you involved in on campus?”
    “I play trombone in the Symphonic Band and Jazz Band. I did some volunteering with 85 Hope, which is a low cost clinic for uninsured people and we did some educational presentations on diabetes and how to cope with that. I am captain of the Frisbee Club, and some other random clubs. I got really involved with Frisbee my freshman year. It kind of depends who shows up, on nice days we’ll have maybe teams of 7 or more playing, but when it gets cold and it’s snowy, we might have teams of 3 or something. We just hang out, we might do practice drills or something, if we have people interested in that. We go to tournaments sometimes, so usually there will be 3 or 4 tournaments per semester, and we’ll take whoever wants to go. We’ll put our own team out there or combine with other Universities. Grace is one that we play with a lot and they’re a really cool group of people. It’s just a really fun way to interact with different people. It’s a special type of people that play Frisbee, they’re very quirky and I enjoy that.”

    “What’s your favorite memory from your time at Manchester?”
    “I remember a time freshman year, me and a bunch of friends decided to go play sardines in the Science Center at 1 am. We all just went over there and had a meeting place, set some boundaries and we all just dispersed and we played for probably 4 hours. Hiding in little cabinets, and hiding in the elevator and taking it down to the basement. It was a good time.”

    “What’s something most people don’t know about you?”
    “I have two adopted sisters from Ethiopia, and we’ve gone to Ethiopia a couple times to visit with the family members they have left, like aunts and uncles and such. Experiencing the huge difference in lifestyles between the United States and Ethiopia has kind of impacted the way that I see what I have here. So, I guess that’s been a big mold into how I see the world.”

  • Kathrine Dwyer
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Kathrine Dwyer, Administrative Assistant to the Vice President for Academic Affairs

    “What brought you to Manchester?”
    “I didn’t really know much about Manchester even though I was from Warsaw, but I was looking at jobs close to home (Silver Lake) and found several openings.  I actually interviewed for two different positions on the same day, one over the phone and one in person. And I got this position!”

    “What is your favorite thing about Manchester?”
    “I would say how helpful people are. When I first started I was really overwhelmed, with so much to learn about the position.  But no matter who I talked to they seemed eager to help and to answer my questions.”

    “What is your favorite thing about working in the Administration Building?”
    “I worked on a project collecting information about the building to share with the Indiana Landmark Association. I researched the archives and took a spooky tour of the second and third floors with Tim [McElwee]. Thinking about the history of the building is pretty amazing, in fact this office was once a science classroom.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?”
    “I grew up around Tippe and Wawasee and currently live on Silver Lake so boating has always been a favorite hobby.  I also enjoy spending time with my dog and reading, especially books by Stephen King.”

  • Cat Wrzesien
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Cat Wrzesien, Senior Pre-Physical Therapy Major from Warsaw, Indiana

    “Why did you decide to attend Manchester?”
    “Initially the reason I visited was because it was close to where I live and I didn’t want to go very far away. But then I came to Manchester, I actually came three times because two of my best friends wanted to visit, but they all came at different times, so we all came three times. Everybody was just so nice, and each time that I came the people in this office remembered me, and I was like ‘Dang, this is crazy.’ I was just so shocked that people remembered me. I was also really excited about the triple guarantee where they help you get into grad school or the career of your choice, and knowing that I have to go to grad school and that help was available was really nice.”

    “Why did you decide to study exercise science/pre-physical therapy?”
    “It’s kind of like a forever thing that I wanted to do. I’ve known since middle school that I wanted to be a physical therapist. Personally, I was delayed in mobility in sixth grade because I had a lot of knee problems and it just progressed from there. I know what it’s like to be impacted physically to where you can’t do daily activities, and I also know what it is to then recover and be able to do it again, and it’s just a wonderful feeling and I want other people to feel that way, too.”

    “Do you have any idea of what type of physical therapist you want to be?”
    “It’s been an abstract idea in my brain to be a traveling physical therapist. When I was in physical therapy, a couple of my therapists were travelers, and they would basically give their name and information to this overarching company, and they would be like, ‘This place in Arizona needs somebody to fill in for six months,’ so you go there. And then, ‘Oh this place in Cali,’ so you go there for six months.”

    “What has been your favorite class at Manchester?”
    “’Anatomy’ with Dr. Huntington. Every time I say that people are like, ‘You liked that class?’ and I really did. I loved Dr. Huntington and just learning the things in the anatomy was really fascinating. It was more than just learning where each part of the body is, connects, what’s it called, and all that, but the way he lectures, he made it important. It wasn’t just, ‘Here’s the facts. Know them for the test.’ I took it last year, fall semester, and I still remember all of it. It stuck with me, so it was really fun to take his class.”

    “What are you involved in on campus?”
    “I have three jobs on campus. I work in Haist Commons, here in the Admissions Office, and I’m also the head photographer for Aurora Yearbook, which is really fun. I really like working for the yearbook. I’m also in STAT, which is Students Today Alumni Tomorrow, and I’m looking into joining the Swim Club. We’ll see about that. STAT is really fun; it’s a lot of fun to work with alumni and hear their stories of Manchester.”

    “What are you hobbies and interests?”
    “Just anything being outside, really. I really like to read even though I don’t have much time to do it. I also really like to get my friends to go on bike rides or runs or walks with me, because I really like being physically active, but I also want to spend time with them.”

    “What is something that most people don’t know about you?”
    “I kind of want to say my natural hair color.”

  • Brandi Chauncey
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Brandi Chauncey ’01, Director of Admissions

    “What brought you to Manchester?”
    “I have an older brother who attended Manchester so I became familiar with the university through him. He was on the football team, and was very connected and became an RA. He was very successful, [and] he was in the accounting program. I think when he moved in as a freshman football player, the coaching staff treated us like we were already a part of the family, and I think that was a huge part. I remember walking into a room and meeting the coach at one point who stopped in to say hi to us. He knew my mom by name and it was great to feel like we were part of something. He’s three years older than I am, so by the time I decided to go to college he was a senior, was well-established at Manchester, and had done many things, so that was a big part of why I chose to come here as a student.”

    “Why did you decide to major in Psychology?”
    “I started as Political Science, because I thought I wanted to be a lawyer, or just something with law. Then I started taking classes and I was a little bored, so I took a psychology class and I realized I loved that class. Even though it was ‘Intro to Pysch’ and sometimes that’s not people’s favorite Psych class. I remember all of the different avenues that we learned about. It wasn’t even necessarily what I learned in that class, it was hearing what I would learn if I continued in Psychology. And then you start relating things to Psychology, so then my interests starting changing, where I realized I’m more of a helping-people, interacting with people, engaging with people, and there’s so many different avenues that you can do that with a Psychology degree. I was also attracted to the Criminal Justice side; I took a lot of Criminal Justice courses here. Ultimately, when I left Manchester to get my graduate degree, I was actually going to get my Master’s in Criminal Justice, but that did not work out. So I didn’t know what I wanted to do, so I ended up doing organizational leadership, which is very much tied into Psychology, like all of the courses I took, it wasn’t that I had taken them as Psychology, but it was very relatable to something I did with my Psychology degree.”

    “What is your favorite memory from your time as a student?”
    “If I think about it from a student perspective, being in the classroom, I remember being in ‘Research Methods’ with Rusty Coulter-Kern and doing his sucker licking research project. I remember at the time thinking, ‘I don’t understand.’ I just thought it was goofy, but now I look back at it and I remember it was something we talked about. We had to do it every day, he’d bring in suckers and we would do it. Not everybody participated, but it was just like this little, common thing that you drew your class in, it was another way to relate to other students. I don’t think that was his intention; he was probably doing some social research project. I just spent the weekend with two of my girlfriends that I met at Manchester and we were talking about going to Walmart in the middle of the night or having dance parties, or the people we encountered here and all the things we were involved with. All the little things add up. So when I think of my favorite things as a student, I don’t know if I have just one, but it’s all of them added together.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?”
    “I teach fitness classes. I’ve always been into fitness, so when I decided to get certified and actually teach Zumba and do some other classes that’s driven my passion for fitness more. Outside of that, I read a lot. That’s probably my go-to whenever I have time, I like to read. Spending time with family.”

    “What is something most people don’t know about you?”
    “Most people wouldn’t know that I grew up in rural Indiana as a farmer, and ten-year 4H member, and that’s very much about who I am. When I think about community, fellowship, and work ethic, it all comes back to that experience.”

    “What did you do in 4H?”
    “I showed pigs and cattle, so that’s probably something people would be shocked to know. And I sew, so I did ten years of sewing projects, and baking. I was part of Junior Leaders, the leadership component of 4H, and I participated in the 4H pageant. I was Miss Congeniality.”

    “What is your favorite memory from your time working here?”
    “I think when I’m working to recruit a student to Manchester and I’m working with different departments to get that student here. So it’s either a music student or an athlete, maybe sometimes it’s somebody who wants to study abroad, but collaborating and working with other offices to come and see that student enroll at Manchester, and then ultimately seeing the students graduate. That’s my favorite new thing is to go to graduation and actually see these students walk across the stage that I helped enroll and help them find Manchester, so I think a combination of all that, just seeing the student from the beginning to the end.”

    “I don’t know if they still do this, but when I was an RA we took students to Les Hively’s farm, he was my co-RA, and they got to learn how to milk cows, and pet calves and learn about the farming. I’m pretty sure we were the first ones to ever do that, so I’m pretty proud of that. We did it another year when I was a hall director, we went to a different [farm], but I don’t know if anybody’s ever done it since. But I thought it was great, people loved it, people who are from the city and have never been on a farm.”

  • Chelsea Jasper
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Chelsea Jasper, Junior Exercise Science Major from Attica, Indiana

    “Why’d you decide to come to Manchester?”
    “I came to Manchester actually as transfer student from Purdue University, but what drew me to Manchester is the small community and how everybody’s so nice here, and genuine. Unlike how Purdue is so big—it’s big enough to have its own fire department and police department—you were just an ID number there, but here you have a name and all your professors know you, everybody knows you here, and you know everybody.”

    “Why did you decide to study exercise science?”
    “I actually started as wanting to be international business management, and then I decided the business life, or being at a desk all the time, just wasn’t for me, so I looked into speech therapy because my younger brother goes to an autism school where he deals with a lot of therapists. I was researching that and came across occupational therapy, and took a lot of interest in that because of how it’s a constantly changing environment, and how you’re always learning. To be able to do that, you have to be an exercise science major here at Manchester University, which then prepares you for a graduate program in occupational therapy.”

    “What has been your favorite class so far?”
    “My favorite class was probably ‘Therapeutic Exercise,’ mainly because it was very hands-on and exactly in my area, but also because I learned a lot about therapy in different settings, including the clinical setting, even therapy in a pool. We actually went to the Aquatic Center here in town and we participated in our own set of therapy. We had to get up really early, 6 o’clock in the morning, to do that. That’s unlike any other class I’ve ever had, so it’s very hands-on and I was really experiencing what it’s going to be like in the occupational therapy field.”

    “What has been your favorite memory from your time here?”
    “I’d probably say Lil Sibs’ Weekend was my favorite, because I got to bring up my sister who was 16 at the time, so a little old for Lil Sibs’ Weekend, but she really enjoyed it. Plus, being two hours from home, even though it’s not a long distance it’s long enough to not go home all the time, so it’s nice to bring in, even if it’s just my sister to see her for the weekend, that was really fun. They put on a lot of really fun events for us, so that was probably my favorite.”

    “What’s something most people don’t know about you?”
    “I’m recently a vegetarian. September 2016 is when I decided to be a vegetarian. I feel like whenever I go to dinner and I just order salad or soup, everybody’s like ‘Why didn’t you just get a chicken sandwich or a hamburger?’ Well, I’m a vegetarian, so I guess that’s something people don’t know about me.”


  • Jenny Pudlo
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Jenny Pudlo, Junior Bio-Chem Major from Crown Point, Indiana

    “Why did you decide to study Bio-chem?”
    “I wanted to go to medical school. I knew Manchester had a really good bio-chem program because of the pharmacy school, so I would be prepared for the challenges of grad school and I knew my professors would support me and be there to help if I had questions.”

    “Do you have an idea of what you want to do in med school?”
    “I wanted to go to med school initially because I wanted to go into Sports Medicine, but after going on the Medical Practicum, I’m not sure about medical school anymore. I’m kind of thinking of getting my Master’s in prosthetics.”

    “Could you talk a little bit about the Medical Practicum?”
    “It was absolutely amazing. We traveled all over Nicaragua and had the chance to offer healthcare to three different villages with a pharmacy, dentistry, and veterinary area.  It was such a unique experience because we got to work hands-on with the patients, and were able to do and see things that we normally wouldn’t see here shadowing as a student. Also, we made great connections with the professionals that went with because we spent almost every minute together and could ask unlimited questions and hear great stores! I absolutely loved how everyone was always so eager to help or share and make the most of every opportunity.”

    “What interests you in prosthetics?”
    “I like the prosthetics area because you get to work with healthcare and also be creative. As a practitioner, I would get to fit, help create, and then modify the prosthesis to help people do things that they did not think they’d ever be able to do, so you get to open that opportunity up for them. It is a really hands on field, which I absolutely love because you get to make casts, modify prosthetics, and the technology is always changing!”

    “What has been your favorite class?”
    “I really liked the ‘Digital Photography’ class. I took that last year, and it was really fun because you got to walk around campus and do more outside stuff rather than just sit in a classroom. It was nice to see how all of our pictures changed from the start of the semester to the end after learning Photoshop and how we could identify what made a good picture rather than saying, ‘I liked the colors or subject.’”

    “What has been your favorite memory from your time here?”
    “Last year, I spent a lot of time at the study tables for ‘Organic Chemistry,’ and I met some of my best friends there. It was like every single night, we went there and had two hours of doing homework, and it just made it way more fun.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?”
    “I really like to be active. I play soccer and I also ran track this year at Manchester. When I am away from school I enjoy spending time with my family and friends. During the summer my family has a lake house, so I’m always outside, paddle boarding, wakeboarding, water-skiing, swimming, hanging out on the boat.”

    “What is something most people don’t know about you?”
    “Probably that I’ve never skipped breakfast at the [JYSC], even on weekends. There’s no one there, but I’m like, ‘I have to have three meals a day! Gotta make it to breakfast!’”

  • Katie Peden
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Katie Peden, Senior Environmental Studies Major and Communication Studies Minor from North Manchester, Indiana                                                 

    “Why did you decide to come to Manchester?”
    “It was nice that it was close to home. At first it was like ‘Oh, that’s way too close to home,’ but the Environmental Studies’ program opportunities and even local farmers recommending it to me said a lot, and I was also able to continue playing Tennis. Also, financially it fit best as well, and the professors seemed really nice.”

    “Why did you decide to study Environmental Studies?”
    “I’ve grown up in agriculture and different things like that, and nowadays with the new conservation practices that are coming out that farmers have to apply to their fields, I wanted to see how I could take part in that [by] understanding how it’s affecting my family and the community. What can I do to be a middleman in helping people with that? That was as close of a fit as I could get to agriculture.”

    “Have you had the opportunity to do any research or work on any projects?”
    “After my freshman year I was able to work with Dr. Sweeten in the 319 Project, so I was able to do water chemistry and also biological surveys in the tributaries that feed into the Eel River and the Eel River itself. Then, throughout last summer and this year periodically, I’ve been working with the Natural Resources Conservation Service, which is a part of the Department of Agriculture, and I was able to see how to make conservation maps. I got to meet with some of the farmers in the Northeast area counties, seeing their point of views on what they think of different payment programs, and other things of the like, and realizing, ‘Oh, is this the right fit for me?’ So far, it’s been a good fit and I really like the people I work with.”

    “What has been your favorite class so far at Manchester?”
    “’Experiencing the Arts,’ even though I was told to avoid it like the plague (and we learned about the plague in that class). I enjoyed it a lot because Dr. Planer is just awesome, he was very passionate about what he did, and he cared about all of us in the class. I learned that Mozart sounds different from Beethoven, just because. This past summer for A Capella Choir we went to New Orleans, Mississippi, and Alabama, and we went to two basilicas there, and I was able to point out Christian iconography things—and I’m Catholic already—but it just helped. [I could point out] how the vaulting is, so realizing, ‘I could use this class, tell other people what’s going on!’ It makes traveling or looking at different things more fun or going to orchestras knowing what instruments sound like what. I enjoyed the class.”

    “What is your favorite memory from your time at Manchester so far?”
    “I guess a really funny memory was my freshman year, during Jan term, my friends and I went to the racquetball room, and I didn’t have any racquetball equipment, so I just brought my chemistry goggles and my tennis racket with me. I felt goofy but it was a lot of fun, and we switched around so I got to use the actual racquetball stuff. It was even funnier that we were in the glass one, so people were looking at us, but that was really fun. And my tennis teammates, of all the years I’ve played, have been really great, and just helping me with school stuff or anything that happens. We’re pretty close-knit.”

    “What are you most looking forward to before you graduate?”
    “Right now I’m taking ‘Environmental Science,’ ‘Physical Geology,’ and ‘Conservation Biology’ and they really play in to what I want to do, so it’s fun to actually have classes that will apply to what my career might be. Dr. Beyeler for Environmental Science is really applying what’s happening currently and how there’s different steps that we have to take to assess them, and how to appeal to the public or educate people on the issues, because you have to look before you leap on how to go about environmental issues and all the different factors that play into it, because it’s not just anthropocentric, there’s bio-centric and eco-centric, different type of things to look at. Some people are like ‘What do those words mean?’ and this is the stuff we’re passionate about, for us Environmental Studies majors. So it’s taking those passions into action, and that’s really neat.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?”
    “I like to go fishing, and I like to watch or listen to basketball and volleyball games from around the area. My family and I usually go to tractor and car shows, or toy tractor shows and things like that. I also participate in the church choir here at St. Roberts. Growing up, the county fair was always the highlight of my summer, so that kind of still is, but it’s hard when I work and now I can only go at 5 o’clock, so everything’s almost done. I still get my Rich Valley tenderloin and ice cream and stuff like that, so that’s fun. My family is pretty close, and I’m still here so I’m able to see them pretty often.”

    “What is like being a commuter?”
    “It’s kind of hard your first year here, because people meet their friends within their dorms or down the hallway. For me, sports made it easier, and also being from here, there are quite a few North Manchester residents that go here. It is a little hard to transition into at first, but people should know that that shouldn’t hold them back from being active in things. I understand if you’re on the line of 40 miles because that would make it harder, but don’t let that hold you back from meeting new people or participating in new activities. And fun fact, I can hear the football games from my house, if it’s a clear day. I thought, ‘I could just set my chair out here and listen to the game!’

    “What is something that most people don’t know about you?”
    “I am a big history buff. I like watching PBS, either documentaries, British comedies, even like Lawrence Welk or old TV shows. There’s some shows that talk about Dragnet or different things like that and people have no idea what I’m talking about, but I’m like ‘No, it’s so good, it was produced in the 60s!’ It’s kind of because my parents are older and I’m the youngest of five, and there’s a 17-year difference from the oldest to me. But I guess I’m an old soul in a 21-year-old’s capacity.”

    “Is there anything else you’d like to share about you or your time at Manchester?”
    “For advice for first-years, would be to not be afraid to ask questions of your professors, because typically they either become your mentors or someone that will help you find people who will then lead you to a career. So raise your hands, don’t be afraid to ask questions, and we have an open-door policy, so utilize that.”

  • Marissa Deetz
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Marissa Deetz, Sophomore Accounting Major from Kendallville, Indiana

    “Why did you choose Manchester?”
    “The first time I checked out campus, I actually had no intentions of coming here. It was the middle of winter—I think I came during Jan Term—so no one was here, and I was like ‘Eh, I don’t know how I feel about it.’ Then I came back for the LEAD Luncheon and I just got to talk to more people, I got shown around campus again, and I decided that I actually really loved it here and ended up deciding to come here. Now I honestly can’t imagine being anywhere else!”

    “Why did you decide to major in accounting?”
    “Again, that was one of those ‘never ever’ circumstances in my life. My dad thought I’d like it and I said ‘No way,’ so I came into Manchester as a Marketing and Sales double major. I took ‘Principles of Accounting’ because it was a major requirement, and I absolutely loved it. I took it during Jan Term so I was doing three hours of class a day, and I took 5-6 hours a night on homework, by the time I played around on my phone and stuff. I really, really loved it. I started talking to some friends and professors and I switched over at the end of my first year here.”

    “What has been your favorite class so far?”
    “I took ‘Business Law’ with Ogden this Jan Term, and I really loved that … I thought it was cool to run through all the different scenarios we ran through and I have just always found law to be interesting. I think I decided I might take ‘Business Law II’ just because I liked it so much.”

    “Have there been any classes outside the College of Business that you’ve enjoyed?"
    “I took ‘Ceramics’ because I dropped ‘Intermediate French’ and I didn’t have 12 credit hours. They had a half-semester class, and I was like ‘There we go, that’s what I’m going to take.’ I thought I’d like it, but I just forgot how much I liked doing art stuff, so that was a lot of fun. I had Professor Oke, and I spent the last half of last semester just doing ceramics projects.”

    “Out of everything you’re involved in, what has been your favorite event or meeting?”
    “MAC would probably be my favorite overall.  Out of MAC events, I really love May Day. It’s great to see the campus come together for a weekend of fun. It is a lot of work but everyone in MAC does a great job at keeping the work entertaining. Honestly, MAC is more of a family than it is a club, so it’s really cool hanging out with everyone.”

    “What has been your favorite memory from your time at MU so far?”
    “I was an Orientation Leader this year, so we have that week we’re here without anybody else on campus, other than athletes. So we all had our training during the day and we hung out at night. We spent a lot of time on the sand volleyball court, which was a lot of fun. I had more mosquito bites on my legs than I could ever count because I was anti-bug spray that week. Overall, it was just a lot of fun.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?”
    “I really love playing volleyball. I played for 8 or 9 years before I came to Manchester and I didn’t play on the team here, so I like that I can play with friends and that we do have intramurals here. I also like doing art projects, I’ve really gotten back into that after I took ‘Ceramics.’ Other than that I do like reading, but I don’t really have much free time outside of clubs and school.”

    “What is something most people don’t know about you?”
    “I guess I’m a really spontaneous person. My senior year I took figure skating lessons just on a whim. I’ve gone on road trips and I’ll see a place off the road that seems cool so I’ll just stop and check that out instead of staying on schedule. I almost took square dancing lessons on a whim one time. I just like being random and keeping life interesting.”

    “Do you have any advice for other students?”
    “I would just recommend getting involved. Manchester is one of those places that’s really what you make it. If you’re not involved, we are a small college so you’re going to be bored. But if you’re involved this is one the best colleges you could ever be at.”

  • Tim McKenna-Buchanan and Carly Kwiecien
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Tim McKenna-Buchanan, Assistant Professor of Communication Studies and Carly Kwiecien ’19 

    Tim: “We are interviewing MU pharmacy students about their socialization experiences, especially professionalism, and communication so how they learn how to communicate as a professional.”

    “How long have you been working on this?”

    Carly: “It’s been a long process. We started in the spring semester, February or March. We had to do a lot of stuff before we started the research: we had to get the proposal approved by IRB, so that’s just to start research, we had to make a consent form, we had to do our interview questions and start those from scratch, and we had to contact people at the pharmacy school. We had a main contact person to figure out how we wanted to go about this and get people’s attention to participate.”

    Tim: “We started narrowing down topics on what we wanted to do, and then everything Carly said. Then we launched full-force in the summer. The first week after graduation we did our first interview, and since then we’ve been…”

    Carly: “On the go.”

    “Why did you decide on the topic of professionalism?”

    Carly: “Well, Tim has some background in socialization, so I got some help in learning about that. Then, we just thought it would be interesting to learn more about the Pharmacy Program because I don’t know much about it, so it’s kind of an exciting learning experience for us, too.”

    “What results have you found?”

    Carly: “We had to interview 20 people, and I had to transcribe all those interviews. Then we downloaded this qualitative data analysis program on my computer called NVivo, so what I did was put the transcriptions into this program, and then I did what’s called initial coding, where I highlight words that I think are interesting or themes that I think are going to pop up a lot in the interviews. So that’s where you get your results from. Then we had to do focus coding, so that’s when we get rid of the stuff that we realize, ‘Oh, only one person said this,’ so we can get rid of that and focus more on the bigger themes or details. I guess right now we’re still in that process, so we don’t know the results exactly. The Manchester Pharmacy Program is a professional program, and we’re learning that a lot of the students say they’re learning about professionalism but there’s not a written definition, so some of it is kind of unwritten rules. And a lot of them learn in their ‘Introduction to Pharmacy’ class or communications class, about how to be professional, how to act, dress, all kinds of stuff, and a lot of them say, ‘I don’t think I need to take this’ but a lot of the other people do. So a lot of them are saying ‘Oh, it’s for them but not for me.’ We’re just picking up on themes along the professionalism line and how its complicated, but then we’re also learning about the professor-student relationships and how that impacts the socialization process.”

    Tim: “There are some unwritten rules about professionalism, so we need to figure out what are those unwritten or informal rules are that students really need to know about? A lot of what we found is that they learn a lot about professionalism in the beginning when they’re first starting the program, and then it’s brought up continuously but it’s like this thing you should already know. Then they learn about it when someone makes a mistake, when someone’s called out for not being professional and they get talked to about it. So, to some extent it’s formalized, but through the years it’s lost in translation almost.”

    Carly: “Also, sometimes those rules are only applied in certain circumstances and not applied to everyone. So that’s kind of what we’re focusing on, so maybe eventually we could use this data to help the Pharmacy Program improve teaching professionalism.”

    Tim: “The main goal is to go to a conference, but depending on what we find, it could be published. We could pursue that, but that’s kind of like a next-on-the-list thing depending on what we get through this summer.”

    Carly: “It should be about 25-30 pages when we’re done, so for now we’re just focusing on one section at a time.”

  • Sandra Granda
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Sandra Granda, Senior Accounting Major from Warsaw, Indiana

    “What brought you to Manchester?”
    “I wasn’t going to come here in the beginning. I came with my high school first and visited and didn’t like it. I thought it was too small. In the process of actually applying for schools, I decided ‘why not just go ahead and apply?’ My story’s a bit more different than most people, because I wasn’t eligible for FAFSA at the time, so I had to find either a place with low cost or a place with high aid. Manchester offered me their financial aid package and I thought it was a pretty good deal, and I came back again. One of the tour guides, Sara, I talked to her one-to-one on the day that I came to visit and she was just very pleasant, so Sara and I basically became friends on that day. She just recently graduated, so since then she’s been my role model. I’ve been looking up to how she’s been doing, and she also graduated with accountancy. It was eye-opening, and I haven’t regretted my decision so far. I love it here.”

    “Why did you decide to study accounting?”
    “I actually hated math when I was in elementary school. I hated numbers. Then, thanks to two of my fifth and sixth grade teachers, they pushed me and told me I could do it. I remember just crying, I hated it. I couldn’t do my homework, it was awful. Then something just clicked. When I went to middle school, I took algebra one and my teacher there just knew I had a bright future—that’s what she told me. She challenged me more and more, and from then on I started taking honors courses in math. By the time I got to high school I met a business teacher, and she taught ‘Intro to Accounting’ and I took it my junior year. I loved it. It wasn’t just math; it was application, it was numbers, it was analyzing, and I liked it. There’s no wrong answer. You have to come up with an actual thing, it’s so structured. Since then I’ve just said ‘accountancy’ and I’ve been sticking with it. I don’t think I’m going to change my major any time soon.”

    “What has been your favorite class you’ve taken so far?”
    “It’s not that it’s my favorite, but I just feel so proud of being able to make it through ‘Intermediate Accounting,’ just knowing how difficult it was. My biggest fear of being an accountant was having to make it to college and take ‘Intermediate Accounting.’ But just knowing I made it through already is great.”

    “Outside of school, what are your hobbies and interests?”
    “Actually, this year I’ve been freer than I have in the first two years. My freshman and sophomore years I was working two part-time jobs while coming to school, so that was rough. This year I’ve just been working at Teachers’ Credit Union, just a part-time job there, so it allows a lot more free time. When I can, I love spending time with my family. Besides that, my biggest hobby is soccer. I love playing soccer whenever I have a chance. I like to go out with my brothers and friends.”

    “What is something that most people don’t know about you?”
    “It’s big right now, I know it can be politically a huge topic, but I was an undocumented immigrant. A lot of people don’t know that, but I usually don’t let it bring me down. As of May this year, I became a permanent resident, so it’s great. Another thing that’s not political –I don’t know how to swim. I just recently learned how to tread water, but it still freaks me out. I think I’m going to sink to the bottom of the pool. The only thing I can do is float and swim backwards.”

    “What has been your favorite memory so far at Manchester?”
    “My best memories were when DaiJah Asumang and Sara Cruz were still here and we got to take trips with the Intercultural Center, the OMA office. We went laser tagging once –those kinds of trips were the best. One of my friends that used to be here, too, Rod, it was the best time when the four of us got to hang out and we got to go do crazy things. The Intercultural Center is amazing here. The opportunities that they provided us at the time were amazing.”

    “Do you have any advice for students?”
    “I would say never give up. If you have the desire to come to college don’t let anything stop you from coming. Financial aid is just numbers. Just choose a good career and it’ll take care of itself. I will say, too, if there’s any undocumented students out there who think there’s no way, talk to someone. You’ll find a way. It’s there.”

  • Karen Kanyike
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Karen Kanyike, Senior Communication Studies Major from Atlanta, Georgia

    “Why did you choose to study communication studies?”
    “I had always wanted to do COMM, since the beginning of high school. Originally, I wanted to do mass communications, because that’s what was offered at home (Uganda). So when I came here, I realized I could do communication studies at Manchester, which was a very broad program. So that’s why I decided to do COMM, but I didn’t really know what it entailed. I was just like, ‘Okay, it sounds like a cool thing to do so I’ll do it.’ As I got deeper into COMM, I realized that it helped me to have a better understanding of how people behave and communicate, and that’s what kept me interested.”

    “What are your goals after graduation?”
    “I’m doing COMM and I’m minoring in journalism and English, so with those three things I’m hoping to get into journalism or marketing or public relations. Now I’m thinking of getting into event planning, because of the internship I’m doing this summer with the Office of Strategic Communications, and part of my job was to organize the Fourth of July celebration. I enjoyed the process of putting things together, contacting people to donate items for the event, and delegating tasks, meeting new people and coordinating with various parties within and outside Manchester to make this event a success. I enjoyed the process and it made me consider event planning.”

    “Tell me about your internship.” 
    “A big part of it was organizing [the Fourth of July Celebration], and I’m also supposed to write press releases, so for the press releases we did at the beginning of the summer, we had to send news to people’s hometowns. We did graduation lists in the beginning, and we had to send press releases to people’s hometowns to tell them that a certain number of people graduated from Manchester and we put the names of the people from that particular hometown into the press release. We’re also writing other kinds of press releases. For example, for people who won awards, we sent press releases to their hometowns. The part of the internship involved writing profiles for the Alumni Newsletter or the Manchester Magazine. I’m a PR Intern, but I’ve been working for the office since September, and I’m one of the Communications Assistants.”

    “What has been your favorite class?”
    “’Media Literacy’ with Judd Case, because I had a chance to create a website, and I had never done that before. I didn’t think I’d be able to create one. For the website, we were supposed to have podcasts and edit a video, and add movie reviews. I was able to gain experience with editing videos, making podcasts, and editing images from the movies. I was able to explore a different writing style with the reviews. I was so used to academic writing, but with the reviews, the writing is more relaxed and not so serious. And Judd Case really guided me through the process; we would meet up every week for an hour and he helped me every step of the way.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?”
    “I love to watch movies in my free time. I also enjoy having long, deep conversations with my friends about life. Also I enjoy traveling. I’ve been to London a few times, I have family there, so that’s the main thing that pulls me. I have two older brothers and cousins there, so I go whenever I can.”

    “What’s your favorite place you’ve been to?”
    “London. It’s definitely my favorite city and I love everything about it. I had actually wanted to live there, but my plans changed eventually. Also, before I came to live in the US, I had been here once or twice when I was still really young. I haven’t been to many places, it’s just been the UK, the US, and Nairobi, Kenya. It’s right next to Uganda, and I was there for maybe about a week. I’ve only been to two states, but every state is like a country on its own.”

    “What is your favorite memory from your time at Manchester so far?”
    “I think maybe my favorite memory is volunteering for the International Fair, because the whole experience was just incredible. I had never cooked for that many people, about 800, and also just being there and seeing and tasting food from other countries. I was experiencing different cultures at once. It’s like I traveled around the world during four hours, because we saw performances from different parts of the world, the food, the people, it was just an incredible experience.”“What is something most people don’t know about you?”
    “Most people don’t know that I love watching horror movies. I scare so easily, so you’d think that I’d want to stay away from things like horror movies, but I love them so much. Only people who are really close to me know that.” 

    “Do you have any advice you’d give to other students?”
    “I think the biggest thing is to have an open mind. When you come to college, you experience new things and you’re exposed to so many things, and there are just many possibilities. Some people have set goals already, but I think being open to exploring other things is huge. Also, using your time well. Time management, as soon as you have that down then everything falls into place. That’s something I have failed to do, because it’s so difficult sometimes. You plan, but things don’t go according to the plan all the time.”

  • Paula Finton
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Paula Finton, Facilities Coordinator for Conference Services from Huntington, IN

    “What is your favorite memory from your time at Manchester?”
    “Probably the small chats I would have with Dave Friermood before he retired. His stories and his dedication to campus just were astounding, and made me want to devote myself in a similar manner.”

    “What other things are you involved in on campus?”
    “I help with the President’s Celebration; I’m on the committee for that. I mostly manage the decorations, and of course attending the event, so that’s fun, seeing the graduating students come in the night before Commencement for one last party with staff, faculty and other students is joyous. I also help the Alumni Office with the Homecoming events, assisting them with event locations and details. I assist most departments with their events and helping them determine what works and what doesn’t in some of the facilities, although posing some challenges, it’s always fun.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?” 
    “I love gardening, and getting together with family. Those are two of the things that are most endearing to my heart. As I was growing up, my grandmother gardened, and I had the privilege of helping her every chance I could and that dedication has just transpired into my flower gardens. And of course gathering with family, you never know how much time you’re going to have with them. It’s a precious commodity.”

    “What is something most people don’t know about you?” 
    “I actually went to Vincennes University out of high school to become a computer programmer. I didn’t get to finish, so that’s why most people don’t know about it. I had to finish early because my brother became very ill, so my funds were kind of diminished, and I didn’t have time to go with student loans because I was halfway through a semester. I use to love computers and creating new programs, so that’s why I went for computer programming.”

  • Justin Lasser
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Humans of Manchester University: Justin Lasser, Associate Professor of Religious Studies

    “What brought you to Manchester?”

    “Well, when you get ready to finish your doctoral studies  you begin to have an anxiety attack about finding a job. And teaching as an adjunct professor is not fun because it doesn’t really pay and there are a lot of things that are expected of you. So, in any case, you start applying. I had an interview here and in my field there are not many jobs — so when you get one you go! But that’s not the only reason I came. I had a choice of maybe teaching at my alma mater, but I wanted to come here. The people that were in my department were probably one of the most prominent reasons. So, I went from living in New York City on Broadway for seven years to the huge metropolis of North Manchester.”

    “What got you interested in your field of study?”

    “For me it was questions of meaning. My parents were going through a divorce; I felt like I was losing an anchor in life. I found refuge in the church and in the sense of meaning it provides. While I challenge many of those innocent notions today, that’s what got me interested in the question. So I’ve always had it – I never lacked it.”

    “Are you working on any research or special projects?”

    “Yes I am. One is on the composition of the earliest Christian texts – proto-Christian. Q, for example, is a hypothetical gospel behind Matthew and Luke. I’ve also named one of my cats after it (and Que also happens to be a Star Trek character and a God-like character). Another relates to the question of psychoanalysis and Christian faith.“

    “What is your favorite class to teach?”

    “I’d probably say ‘Rethinking God.’ I like that a lot. I also really enjoy ‘Jesus and the Gospels.’”

    “What is something that most people don’t know about you?”

    “I have my pilot’s license which most people don’t know. I also grew up in tights. My mom’s a ballet teacher so I took ballet – I had to. It was a very awkward stage in life – you’re in eighth grade and you’re wearing tights in The Nutcracker. I was once the Snow King. Sounds masculine, right? Well it’s not. I wore white tights with a white shirt that had a “V” all the way down. You know, ballet stuff with pirate-like sleeves.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?”

    “I love nothing more than waking up on a Saturday morning, getting a cup of coffee and reading for hours. That doesn’t sound very exciting to you, right? I also look silly because I like to walk and read a book at the same time. And people honk at me because they think I’m going to walk into the road or something but I do it on long farm roads. I like to kayak on the ocean and rivers, but traveling is probably my best passion – my favorite passion.”

    “What is your favorite thing about Northeast Indiana?”

    “I think my favorite thing is probably the discussions you can have. Here, I’m in a college town and I hang out with people who are not always in my discipline and we learn from each other. You don’t get that all the time in big cities, and you don’t even get that in small towns – there is something unique about this environment. And I try to take advantage of that. We meet at the Main View on Tuesday nights and we have some awesome discussions – that’s probably my favorite. Also it’s got a beautiful fall, but a very weak spring.”

    “What organizations and projects are you involved in around the community?”

    “What I do most is [with] Timbercrest – I teach there … that’s probably my primary town thing. I lead a Bible Study every Monday night at the Main View with them. Every other Friday I do a talk on religious themes. I occasionally do something called “News Talk” which is at the Shepherd’s Center.”

  • Nicole Weaver
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Nicole Weaver, Sophomore Biology-Chemistry Major and Spanish Minor from Fort Wayne

    “Why did you decide to attend Manchester?”
    “There are several reasons. I play basketball here, so I joined the basketball team and I really love them. It’s close to where I live – that’s really nice. And also the academics here. I met with a professor and [I] really loved interacting with them.

    “Why did you decide to study Bio-Chem?”
    “I decided to study Bio-Chem because I really like to help people and I always knew that I had a passion for the science field and so I planned on taking my bio-chemistry major and going pre-med with it – I’m really excited for that.”

    “What has been your favorite class you’ve taken so far?”
    “My favorite class is probably ‘Principles of Biology’ because I’m a really outdoorsy person and a lot of the labs are outdoors and we worked with small animals last semester and that was really cool – we went down to the river for our first lab.”

    “What are you involved in on campus?”
    “I’m involved in basketball, I’m a part of the Student 300 club, and I’m looking to get involved in the art club. And then I also want to become a peer tutor.”

    “What has been your favorite memory you’ve made so far?”
    “My favorite memory is the day classes got cancelled from the power going out. It was such a beautiful day. It seemed like everyone on campus was outside. We were able to take a frisbee and a hammock out and just relax. It was even better that we didn’t have class the next day either so we could sleep in!”

    “Could you talk a little bit about playing basketball and what it’s like being a student athlete?”
    “Yeah, it’s a lot of balancing – it’s a juggling act. But the coaches and the professors, and even at the Success Center, everybody is here to help you so it made it really easy and it helped me to be successful. With the study tables, too, you have a designated time to put forth toward your studies and then you have your designated time to put forth toward basketball and so that’s made it really easy and really easy to plan.”

    “Do you have a favorite memory from this basketball season?”
    “I have a lot from this basketball season. One of them would probably be going to Peabody [and] we watched a movie with all the elderlies. It was so much fun and they loved it and we loved it so that was awesome.”

    “What are your hobbies and interests?”
    “I like to fish, I like sports, and I like to read, watch movies, and hang out with friends.”

    “What is something most people don’t know about you?”
    “I would say most people don’t know how passionate I am about animals. That’s not something I talk about a lot [while] going into the medical field, but I had always wanted to be a veterinarian when I was younger. Part of me still kind of wants to do that, but I just think that I would be a lot happier helping kids than having to deal with sick animals because I get really emotionally attached to them.”

  • Destiny Howard
    by User Not Found | Jun 06, 2019

    Destiny Howard, Freshman Elementary Education Major from North Webster, Indiana

    Why did you decide to attend Manchester University?

    “Um, both [of] my parents came here and when I got here for the campus tour I just fell in love with the campus.”

    Why did you decide to study elementary education?

    “I’ve had a couple of really good teachers in my life and they’ve made a really big impact on me and so I think that if I can do that for my students then I would be making a difference.”

    What are your future goals/plans?

    “Uh, to graduate and get a job and be debt free!”

    What is your favorite class?

    “Right now I think it would be my FYS – Cults and Controversies – for sure. It’s just really interesting to learn a different perspective on cults than what you would typically learn in everyday life.”

    What are your hobbies and interests?

    “Um, I like to draw. I like writing stories. I guess as far as interests, I like to hang out with my friends and stuff.”

    What is your favorite memory from your time here?

    “That’s hard… I guess having movie night with my friends because that’s just really fun.”

    What is something most people don’t know about you?

    “I would say most people don’t know that my middle name is Sauchel.”

    Thank you for sharing your story with us!

  • Jeff Beer
    by User Not Found | May 28, 2019

    Associate Professor of Exercise Science and Athletic Training
    Undergraduate Director of Athletic Training Education

    “What do you want students to know about the Exercise Science and Athletic Training program?”

    “I want students to know how dynamic our program is. We house four different majors [Athletic Training, Exercise Science with two different concentrations and Physical Education] so we have a great mix of students, faculty and staff that make for a healthy [learning] environment. I want students to know that when you’re in my department, you’re going to be treated like you’re the #1 person on this campus. You’re going to get the attention that you deserve and need to be successful.”

    “What kinds of opportunities are available to students after graduation?”

    We advise each student individually to look at their personal goals to lead them in the right direction. Physical Education concentrates on teaching children. And students have the opportunity to work with kids [out in the field] while still in undergrad. Athletic Training prepares students to take the Board of Certification exam when they graduate. Our goal is to push those students clinically and academically, so they can pass the first time. Exercise Science, students have two tracks. The Fitness and Recreation track is for students who are interested in becoming strength and conditioning specialists, certified personal trainers, YMCA directors, etc. That program is heavy on strength conditioning, and we have worked with the NSCA [National Strength and Conditioning Association] to make sure our students are prepared. Students who take the second track have the option to go on to receive their master’s degree in areas such as physical therapy. That major is built to house the prerequisites for the master’s degree.”

    “You mention striving for student success on campus. Are you a part of fitness programs off campus?”

    “I’m a huge not-for-profit guy and I believe in a lot of service learning and service work. I run two different not-for-profits. I’m the executive director of One Community in South Whitley. It’s a small town, but we do things like summer feeding programs for families to come out to get lunch, free to the community. We do things like Lunch of Camaraderie, which is a program for seniors at least twice a month. Our volunteers prepare meals to feed these individuals. I also run a not-for-profit called South Whitley Youth League, and we apply for grants all the time for youth programming and to get kids to stay fit, get active and be energetic and involved. If we don’t continue these kinds of programs that encourage kids to get active, I think that does a lot of damage to their future.

    So my big thing that I want people to know about me is that my arms don’t only reach in one direction. I’ve got arms everywhere trying to stay in everything, but my biggest thing is giving back to the people in the communities I’ve lived in, and that anywhere I embed myself to work, I work 1,000%.”

    “You do so much on and off campus- how do you find the energy to do it?”

    “I am always high energy and moving around, but most people probably don’t know that I am a two-time cancer survivor. I’ve been struggling with this from 1979 when I was 2 years old until recently when I was 34. That has been one of the biggest trials of my life, but for people who do know about that, it shows them that I fight, I battle, and my most important goal right now is that the students on this campus will be successful.”


  • Barb Burdge
    by User Not Found | Mar 26, 2019

    Director of Social Work, Chair of Sociology and Criminal Justice

    What brought you to Manchester?

    “I had been teaching social work at a different college for a couple years before coming to Manchester and when the position opened up at Manchester there were two things that brought me here. One is the mission of the school, the people who were here, and the very authentic way in which everybody I met here was working very hard to carry out that mission. The values of our institution permeated throughout the day I interviewed here. The staff and the friends that I had here – just to hear them talk about Manchester… I could tell there was just something very different about Manchester. And, the values here align perfectly with my personal values in a way that I had not experienced at previous employers. So, I wanted to be a part of that. I wanted to – I felt like I was going to be a better person by working here. The other thing that brought me to Manchester is the fact that my family has an old homestead in Wabash County and it had always been my dream to purchase that, live there, and fix it up and renovate it. So getting – joining the faculty at Manchester made that very possible. Two years after joining the faculty here, my partner and I moved to the homestead, fixed it up, got it listed on the national register of historic places—we brought it back to life and live there.”

    What got you interested in social work?

    “It’s mission as well as its alignment with my own personal values. Specifically, its emphasis on social justice. Working to end all types of oppression and challenge discrimination and work toward equality – that’s something that’s explicitly part of social work’s mission that is not necessarily part of the mission that other helping professions have. So that’s why I chose social work as opposed to some other helping professions.”

    Are you working on any research or special projects?

    “I’m still hoping to publish an article or two out of my dissertation which was on the lived experiences of transgender adults living in the Midwest. I’ve published one article from that but I’d still like to publish some more in the next couple of years. But I’m working on some other projects with Katy Gray Brown and Andrew Duffy, who has been an adjunct here off-and-on in the last few years. The project is on conflict transformation curriculum for Parkview health systems, so Parkview can train all their people on what’s basically a Manchester model of conflict resolution.”

    What is your favorite class to teach?

    “I like teaching all the classes I teach. I teach both social work classes and gender studies courses, and I like them both a lot for different reasons. In gender studies, I teach a first-year seminar on LGBT issues, I teach intro to gender studies, and I teach introduction to queer studies. I love teaching all of those because they – the content in those courses can just sometimes blow people’s minds – like the idea that sex and gender aren’t the same thing. So, I love teaching the gender studies courses. Another reason I really love teaching the FYS on LGBT issues and introduction to queer studies is because when I was in college and coming out and struggling with my own identity and my own internalized homophobia, um, I needed classes like that. Having classes like that at the time would have made my life so much easier and saved me a lot of heartache and pain. And, so, I want to be the gay professor that I needed when I was in college that I didn’t have.”

    What are you involved in on campus?

    “I am one of two faculty advisors for United Sexualities and Genders, I’m faculty advisor of the Social Service Club, and I do the Celebrating Diversity Workshops that are offered at least once a semester. I’m also on faculty’s Executive Committee, I’m on Academic Governance Council, I’m on the Diversity Inclusion Council, Gender Studies Council, the Title IX team – I have a lot of committee assignments.”

    Are you involved in anything off campus?

    “In the community I’m on three boards of directors – the Bowen Center, the Roann Public Library (the library that my great-great-grandmother founded), and I’m on the board of an organization called Roann’s Community Heritage, which is a historic preservation group.”

    What is your favorite thing about Northeast Indiana/Fort Wayne?

    “I love that my name is on the big building downtown. If you’re at The Mainview, look across the street to the building with the steeple-shaped tower on top and you’ll see “Burdge”. I’m sure I’m related to that person, but I’ve never been able to connect the dots. I like living close to my family. I like living in the country and having the freedom that comes with rural living but also being in close enough proximity to urban areas and “vacationing” to Indy, Fort Wayne, Chicago – places like that. But I like living where I can see the sunset and the stars and where my dogs can run around freely in the yard.”

    What are your hobbies and interests?

    “Well dogs. We have two dogs: a border collie and an Australian shepherd mix. They’re like our kids and we love them like crazy. We also have two horses. And my partner Marsha and I like movies, we like camping in the summer, we like to travel – we’ve traveled pretty extensively in the U.S. and globally. One of my favorite places is Ireland. I’ve been there twice – once in the north and once in the epublic. I also love Amsterdam – I’ve been there twice. My whole family took a big trip to Alaska two years ago and that was amazing.”

    What is something most people don’t know about you?

    “Most people don’t know that I started college as a saxophone major. The summer before my junior year I changed my major to psychology, and so I got my bachelor’s degree in psychology. After that, I got my masters and doctorate in social work. But yeah – I started at IU with a major in saxophone.”


  • Zander Willoughby
    by User Not Found | Mar 26, 2019

    Zander Willoughby, from Wyoming, Mich., is a senior majoring in Political Science and French. When the opportunity came for him to move into “off-campus” housing, Zander was charmed by the iconic “little pink house,” just steps away from the campus border.  The house is owned by MU Groundskeeping Supervisor Dave Good and wife Lois, and comes with a rich history.


    How did you get the opportunity to live in the little pink house?

    Dave and Lois Good own it, and Dave emailed me saying, “Hey! The pink house is open and we heard you wanna live there.” At the time, I actually had plans to live farther in town, so I ended up saying no. Then, luckily, my other housing option fell through, so I emailed him the second I found out that I had no place to live and said, “Hey Dave, I know somebody is living there and it’s gotta be full, but is it per chance open?” And he said, “Actually, somebody dropped out yesterday. You can have it.” And that is the roller coaster of how I got to live in the little pink house.  

    How did you manage to fit everything you own into this tiny house?

    Moving into the tiny house, even though it’s small, it’s still twice as big as the dorm. So, believe it or not, I keep buying things because there’s so much space, to be honest. So I’m buying things because now I have my own kitchen and stuff like that. It’s really, really nice. So while it is tiny it’s still the perfect amount of space for me.

    Now that you’re used to tiny living, can you ever picture yourself living in a big house?

    No! In the pink house there’s room for everything you need but then there’s no room for things you don’t need. It’s been really nice in that way. If I want to clean up, it takes five minutes. If you want to clean the whole house, it takes 10 minutes! Now that I live here, I’ve also found myself watching tiny house videos and I feel like after this it would be weird to live in a big house. And also kind of wasteful.

    Do you get a lot of people asking you about your house?

    All. The. Time. Not quite every day, but at least twice a week. So I joke about it. Because the front door and the back door are in line with each other, I’ve joked about just having an open house with some cheese, or whatever, and people can come in, take a piece of cheese, look at it all, take it in, and walk in a straight line in and out! That way it will go quickly because so many people are interested. Plus, ya know, a tour of the little pink house and some cheese, what could be better?


  • Kyler Mills
    by User Not Found | Mar 26, 2019

    Manchester University Alumnus

    Senior Accountant at Baden Gage & Schroeder, LLC in Fort Wayne, Ind.

    “What drew you to Manchester?”

    “I was drawn to Manchester University because of the size, the Accounting Program and the location. Coming from a small-town high school, I knew the transition to Manchester’s size was going to be smooth. It was not just the campus size, but more importantly the classroom size and students-to-professor ratio. Just like a majority of high school seniors, I was ready to venture out, but it was convenient to only be 50 minutes from home.”

     “How did Manchester prepare you for the ‘real world?’”

    “The Accounting Program at Manchester University was the greatest challenge I had endured in my academic career. Students are not only tested academically, but challenged to grow and develop professionally. The reward is beyond a degree. It is an exhilarating sense of achievement that empowers young professionals to go beyond expectations and prove their abilities and worth in the professional field.”

     “What do you love about your job?”

    “Wow, there [are] so many things about my job that I love! People count on us to provide guidance, support and assurance. It’s a rewarding feeling. My coworkers are amazing. There are people here with decades of experience. Call me a nerd, but I could honestly sit down and listen for hours to some of their conversations. Especially in public accounting, there are endless opportunities to learn and gain valuable experience. It’s unbelievable how many different areas I have been exposed to. Just like my Manchester education, it has molded me into a well-rounded, knowledgeable professional.  The work environment is also welcoming and supportive. We have an open door policy from top to bottom. I have no fear [of] waltzing into a director’s office and asking him or her a question or even just to chat. But importantly, we work hard and play hard. We’ve done TinCaps outings, golf outings, softball league and various parties.”

     “What advice would you offer for current MU students?”

    “I encourage students to take advantage of the opportunities and resources that Manchester provides. I struggled to maintain that GPA just like any other student, and taking advantage of those resources is a huge help! But it’s important to gain experiences [in college]. Unfortunately, your time [at Manchester] will come to an end one day, so live it up because one day you will address an email to Professor Ogden as ‘Professor Ogden’, and he will ask that you call him ’Tim.’ Be adventurous and unafraid to fail. If you’re over 21, take advantage of the free fries at The Inn on Thursday nights and, for the love of God, try their tenderloin.”


  • Joe Messer
    by User Not Found | Mar 26, 2019

    Joe Messer, associate professor of entrepreneurial studies and director of the Professional Sales Program, discusses the growing program and the opportunities available to students.

    “What was it like launching the sales program in 2014?”

    “Our first step was to reach out to companies to see what they were looking for in employees. They all said, ‘You bring us someone who is trained in professional sales and we’ll hire them!’ And with that in mind, we developed this Professional Sales Program and have been growing that program: number one, by informing students what opportunities were out there and, number two, working with companies to come here and talk to our students. Several of our courses include guest speakers who discuss the different opportunities within their companies. We’ve also gotten several companies to do internships with us which has helped the program grow even more. Once students started seeing their peers getting jobs right out of college, more students started to get involved.”

    “As this program grows, what is one upcoming project that you’re really excited about?”

    “One of the classes I teach is Sales and Entrepreneurship. In this class, students have to come up with their idea and their own product to sell. To take that one step further, I am trying to get students to work with the local vocational school in Wabash and have the vocational school manufacture the products. So we come up with the idea, they prototype the idea, and then we’ll learn how they manufacture the product while the students at the vocational school will learn how to put a business plan together. This will be a great way for us to get into the community. It’s a way for university students to see how product is made and it’s a way for high school [students] to see what life is like at Manchester University.”

    “Do you think students realize the vastness of all they can do with this major or minor?”

    “No, I don’t think they do. But students spread the word and then other students begin to see the opportunities available, including dual majors. On my January session trip to New Zealand, I talked to a young student who had an interest in orthopedics, but she knew she did not want to become a doctor. She loved the field of study and I told her about being an orthopedic sales person. With that position, you have to understand the anatomy and speak the language – you’d even get to go into live surgeries; however, you don’t do the work but you get to sell the product. Those conversations help enlighten students to think about a different career or area of work.”

    “You mentioned your January session trip to New Zealand. Can you talk about that a little more?”

    “We were gone for 14 days and the trip focused on the adventure industry. So we did some adventurous things: we climbed the outside of a bridge, [went] bungee jumping, skydiving and white water rafting, swam with dolphins, zip lined and [experienced] a lot of adventure sports! After each adventure, we would talk to the owner and discuss how they sell their product and attract people to these touristy adventures. Prior to each adventure, each student had to complete a write up about the company, and each day, a different student was responsible for that day and would act as our tour guide. [He or she] would have the schedule, location, contact and plan where we stop, where we eat, and absolutely everything; and a different student would be the videographer for the day. We have a videographer because when you’re talking to your boss, you don’t have four hours to explain everything you did on this trip; therefore, the video is chopped down to three minutes for each day and then we combine them all into one big video.”

    “And do you also take part in the adventurous activities?”

    “Absolutely! I love doing all of those things! Except there were a few I wasn’t supposed to do. My wife told me before I left, ‘You’re an old man and you can’t do these things!’ so I was going to follow orders to not do the bungee jumping or the skydiving. And the students gave me a really hard time! So, I told the students that if the bungee jumping company gives a great presentation, I’ll jump. And what do you know, he gives a great presentation! So, I’m getting ready to go and one of the students sends a picture to my wife! In about two seconds flat I got a text saying ‘no way!’ But, I already had all of the gear on … so I jumped!”

    “Was she mad?”

    No, she knows I’m a knucklehead! My wife, Robin, a lovely lady, was a Manchester graduate 30 years ago before she moved to Colorado to marry me. And today, we have three lovely kids. Two have graduated from college, one from MU, and the other is a senior in college who desperately needs a haircut. And those are the four reasons why reason I couldn’t go skydiving.”


  • Tim McKenna-Buchanan
    by User Not Found | Mar 26, 2019

    Director of Honors Program and Assistant Professor of Communication Studies

    “What brought you to Manchester?”

    “Um, I came to Manchester [for] a couple of different reasons. I went to a similar school like Manchester - Wayne State College in Nebraska – and it had 2,500 students and the focus was on students and the professors teaching. So, when I was looking for schools… I kind of, throughout my education – getting my PhD and stuff – I always wanted to end up at a school where teaching was the focus and students. I like doing research and I still like doing research, but I wanted to provide students opportunities like I was provided.”

    “What interests you about Communication Studies?”

    “It all interests me. I think what interests me the most is just how important communication is to everyday life, and [how it] kind of challenges people’s concept of what communication is. I think it’s often taken for granted and we don’t often think about how we can improve it. We know how important communication is for the work place, for relationships, but it’s hard to think about strategies for how to improve our listening and how to improve our communication. So, I like that it’s a part of our everyday life - whether it’s work, relationships, anything. It’s also [important] to think about it with a critical lens because I don’t think we do that – I don’t even do that. In a lot of my classes I learn from a lot of my students in thinking ‘I had never thought about it that way’ or 'Why do I do that that way?’ I learn a lot from students and from past professors in kind of challenging my own perceptions.”

    “Are you working on any special projects at the moment?”

    “Well, there’s a lot of stuff in the works. One thing is – I’ll give you three examples – I’m working on a piece from my dissertation. My dissertation looked at how gay and lesbian individuals come out in the work place or really navigate the workplace. And so, there’s a piece on navigating invisibility – a lot of the research has talked about diversity and some of that stuff is on the surface level, but what happens when your diverse characteristic is invisible and how do you navigate that? And so, we’ve talked about doing some research comparing experiences and what invisibility looks like in the workplace. Another thing is I worked with Carly Kwicien this summer. We interviewed pharmacy students at Manchester and looked at how they’re socialized in the pharmacy program to become professionals and [looking at] professionalism in the workplace and how it’s different for pharmacy students compared to medical students. And the last thing is a teaching activity for the Emotion in the Workplace classes. I do an emotion work audit and that’s where students find a job and interview someone and do an analysis – and so I want to use that activity and get that activity published in a journal called Communication Teacher, which is a place where we can share teaching ideas with other people so people can use our ideas.”

    “Why do you love teaching?”

    “I love teaching because… I really love it for the students. The relationships I build with students and getting to know students and having fun in the classroom. I love students being engaged in the classroom, which doesn’t always happen. Also, just kind of building those relationships that are in the classroom and engaging or challenging them with ideas. But also outside of the classroom – when students that aren’t even this major come and talk to me about life or just come to talk about a tv show or something – those aspects of teaching. I like building relationships with students and doing stuff out of the classroom, whether it’s activities or starting a club or something like that that gets them applying what they need to know to be successful in the workplace.”

    “What is something most people don’t know about you?”

    “I have two kids – we’re in the adoption process for our two boys. Troy is six and Alex is four, and we’ve had them for a little less than a year. They’re crazy and energetic. Also, I’m speech and debate captain, I’m from Colorado, I’ve been married for almost five years to Josh, I have a dog named Pepper, but my life has changed a lot since adopting kids. We got them last April and it’s been like a whirlwind –not in a bad way, just a change.”

    “What are you looking forward to as the new director of the honors program?”

    “I’m looking forward to just having more of an administrative role with students and being kind of a go-to person for the honors program. [Recently] students were often left on their own to navigate it, so I want to be the kind of person to show them the way. We’ve actually done a lot in the past semester or so in making sure everyone knows where they’re at in the honors program and making sure they’re on track and know if they need to improve their GPA. And also, to make it more manageable for students – for high achieving students for creating a kind of excellence at the university.”

    “What kind of shared experiences have stood out to you?“

    I think – I have a couple. The first one [was] my first year [where] we did advanced public relations. My students took on creating their own VIA and I think what stood out to me was how the students took ownership of the project, which is kind of the goal of that class, but we really had a successful event. One of the really large VIA’s had filled up the upper JYSC, like it was to capacity, and so it was just an exciting experience. The VIA was called 'Small School, Big World’ and it was about what you can do with your degree after your time at Manchester. We brought back three alumni to talk about their experiences: what they learned while they were at Manchester and then how that’s shaped them in their careers today. But the students – I can’t take ownership for it, I was just the proud bystander watching my students pull it all together.”

    “How has your time at Manchester shaped you?”

    I think in many ways… I don’t know. I have a really good group of support here and friends that are kind of like a second family. Like, when we adopted the boys, there were a lot of people that helped us out because it was quick when we got the boys. And I would say a really good social support network here that’s shaped me and I [think] that speaks to the community that’s created here at Manchester between faculty, staff, and students. And one of the things I love about the students is when they’re interested –when we were adopting the boys they were interested and that doesn’t happen at a lot of other universities. So, I think it shaped me around a community that’s inclusive and I also - something I study is LGBT issues and coming out in the workplace and I always worried about where I would end up and if I would be accepted where I was at and that’s never even been a question here. So, I think it’s shaped me about being open to other ideas as well and also being open to a community and being there for other people.“