The Office of Community Engagement is located on the top floor of Lane, room 301, by the Center for Student Development office. Come by anytime to chat with one of us!
Val Buchanan | Director
Val grew up in both in Michigan and Texas, resulting in a love for cross-cultural settings and Mexican food! Her faith journey has been one of seeking to explore themes of urban ministry, building community, racial reconciliation, holistic discipleship, and civic participation. Val studied Recreation and Sociology at Southwest Baptist University in Missouri and then spent five years working in the Missions and Ministries Office at that same school. After moving to Lynn in August 2003, Val was given the opportunity to begin connecting Gordon College and the city of Lynn. In this journey, she has loved getting to know the people making a positive difference in the City of Lynn! Val also enjoys living close to the ocean, watching NFL games with friends, spinning classes at the gym, and traveling to South Africa.
Katie Knudsen | Associate Director
Katie was born and raised in New Jersey. She grew up in a Jewish family and came to faith in Jesus through the ministry of Young Life. Katie studied Psychology and Religion at Duke University, where she met her husband, Jamie. They moved to Massachusetts for Katie to attend Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, where she earned a Master’s degree in Counseling. Katie first worked in the counseling world, but took a few years off to raise her four children: Dani, Jacob, Lily, and Aliyah. Katie and Jamie adopted Dani and Aliyah from Ethiopia when they were 9 years old and 9 months old, respectively. She returned to work at Gordon 9 years ago as an adjunct instructor for CCC, and later TGC and Christian Theology. Currently, Katie and Jamie’s house in Hamilton serves as a “boarding house” for 3 Gordon students, who squeeze in with their family of 6 and beloved dog, Maccabbee. Katie serves as an elder in her church and on the local Young Life Committee, loves working out at the Bennett Center, and, in addition to service, is passionate about hospitality and international adoption.
Fred Mathieu | College Bound Director
Fred Mathieu graduated from UMASS Dartmouth with a BA in Political Science. A Lynn native, Fred is well connected in the city having served as a substitute teacher in many Lynn schools and Kids Club Director at Washington Street Baptist Church. Fred currently serves as the Director of Camping at Grotonwood Camp and Conference Center, serving youth from across the state as well as adults with special needs. Fred is a visionary leader who is committed to helping kids reach their potential.
Hannah Schundler | Volunteer Service Learning Coordinator
Hannah Schundler graduated from Gordon in 2011 with a degree in International Affairs and is thrilled to come back to serve in the Office of Community Engagement. During Hannah's time at Gordon, she volunteered at Girls Inc. in Lynn, which sparked an interest in community development and service-learning. She later interned in the OCE, which helped her make more connections between service, learning, and engagement with the world in which we live. Following her graduation, she worked at the Center for Student Missions (CSM) in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Boston, facilitating short term urban engagement trips for students. This experience allowed her to connect an interest in education and students with intentional and thoughtful engagement in the local community. Hannah just completed an MA in Higher Education and Student Development at Taylor University. She has a passion for college students and believes that the college years are an incredibly formative time to ask big questions, wrestle with beliefs and convictions, discern calling, and learn how to be a more thoughtful and faithful follower of Christ. Hannah is so excited for this opportunity at Gordon and hopes that students may experience the same type of transformation through community engagement that she experienced during her time in college.