Gordon College is committed to preparing the people of God for the work of God. Many of our graduates serve in church positions, while others are working with para-church ministries. Some of our graduates work with missions agencies around the world and a few entrepreneurs have even started their own ministries. Many alumni find themselves in graduate school, furthering their studies for the service to which God has called them. Read on for more stories about where Christian Ministries grads go.
Wes Buckley '13
The Falls Church (Anglican)
Falls Church, VA
After graduation, I moved to Virginia to begin full-time student ministry with about 400 teenagers. Gordon College fully prepared me to go into full-time ministry in many ways. I was taught and challenged to think theologically and practice ministry passionately both in the classroom and serving in ministries on campus and in the community. At Gordon I really discovered who I am spiritually. My faith grew significantly as I was immersed in theological conversations in classes, chapel, and among friends and mentors. I was challenged to see how my faith engages our culture and how to help young people see the relevance of Christianity in a post-modern culture.
Josh Porizky '13
Director of Student Ministries
New Hope Presbyterian Church
Castle Rock, CO
Right after graduation I got married, moved to Colorado, and became the youth minister at a great church. Our students are energetic and passionate about growing into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ. Our ministry is focused on embodying the incarnational ministry and lifestyle of Jesus by coming alongside the students and sharing our lives together as we seek to develop genuine disciples of Christ. Gordon is where I truly learned the meaning of unconditional love and how to build genuine relationships that were theologically rich and grounded in community. Gordon prepared me for real life ministry by challenging me to integrate classroom lessons into my real world life and ministry.
Kerry Trunfio '12
Director of Youth Ministry
Our Savior Lutheran Church
Three days after graduating I accepted a position in youth ministry. A lot of my job is spent in a small diner meeting with kids one-on-one or in small groups encouraging them as they continue to journey on their road with Jesus. The Lord has been so faithful in this ministry, and I am so thankful that when I said yes to my first job in the real world I felt equipped to be a part of church leadership. It is because of the professors who mentored me and truly cared about what they were teaching that I feel prepared to be in ministry today.
Brittany Nyce '12
Philadelphia City Director
Center for Student Missions
I completed my practicum senior year with the Center for Student Missions, which ended with the offer of a full-time position! My days are now spent working with group leaders preparing their teams for a week of serving alongside our year-round ministry partners. I also disciple our summer staff, frame the vision of the greater citywide ministry and supporting them as they are leading groups around the Philadelphia. My time at Gordon prepared me by shaping my idea of what ministry should look like, grounding me in the foundations of faith, rooting me in deep community and equipping me with the tools to serve with sincere compassion and openness.
Jenna Nowosacki '10
Program Coordinator and Therapeutic Riding Instructor
Windrush Farm Therapeutic Equitation, Inc.
Currently I am serving as the Program Coordinator at Windrush Farm in Boxford, MA. Windrush Farm is a nonprofit horse farm specializing in teaching physically, emotionally, and learning disabled children and adults to ride and work with horses. Our mission is to use the horse to expand the personal, emotional, and physical boundaries of all who ride and work with us. As a Gordon graduate and a Christian, I also see the spiritual boundaries of our riders (and everyone who works with them) expanding. As program coordinator, I try to ensure that all our riders' needs are met in a supportive lesson environment and aim to support other community organizations with our programs.
Jessica Tchindebet '10
Director of High School Ministries
Chapel Hill Presbyterian Church
Gig Harbor, WA
After graduating, I moved out to Washington State to serve as the High School Ministries Intern at Chapel Hill Church in Gig Harbor. After spending two years developing my leadership skills and broadening my experience by serving alongside a full-time ministry team, I became the Director of High School Ministries. I spend a large part of my time with students but also help to plan and lead weekly youth group, service projects, mission trips, and retreats as well as encourage students in their walk with God. My goal is to serve God by sharing His love with students and to be molded into the person and servant that God desires of me. I am so thankful for my education at Gordon College as it prepared me to enter the world of student ministries with confidence, knowledge, and wisdom.
Nate Harrison '09
Youth Pastor, Emmanuel United Methodist Church
After serving youth and their families in the beach town of Pawleys Island, South Carolina for three years I am now in serving in the mid-west community of Noblesville, Indiana where I am committed to community ministry and outreach. I absolutely love our ministry and the students I am blessed to spend time with every single day. Most days are spent in chaotic middle school cafeterias, sharing great conversations with students on the football field, or at the beach. It's awesome! Throughout my time in ministry I have been constantly reminded of and thankful for the education and training I received through my years at Gordon College.
Megan Footit ‘09
Church and Youth Ministry Administrator, Abundant Life Church
When I was a student at Gordon I got involved as an intern at Abundant Life Church through the Gordon in Boston program. Though I am from the country and had relatively little experience in an urban environment, God granted me success and, when I concluded my internship, I was asked to return full-time after graduation. Now I work at Abundant Life and am most grateful for my church family. As the Church Administrator I tend to the daily running of the church, coordinate ministry events, and minister holistically to the congregation and community. As Youth Ministry Administrator, I have the privilege of serving alongside nationally known youth pastor Rev. Virginia Ward to demonstrate the love of God to the youth of our community. Ministering at Abundant Life has provided me with great opportunities such as sharing at national conferences, being on city-wide planning teams, and engaging in the front lines of urban ministry. I am grateful that Gordon provided a solid foundation and prepared me to hold in tension the issues that arise in ministry.
Jared Cave '09
Coalition for Christian Outreach
Shortly after graduating I began serving in a residential program with at-risk teenagers. After spending three years in this social service position I felt called to serve in a position that provided greater opportunities for direct ministry with students. God led me into college ministry and answered my prayers in ways I never imagined. I am now working with the CCO (Coalition for Christian Outreach) in a local church reaching out to college students at two colleges in Williamsport, PA. My career path has not been a straight line since college, but because of my education at Gordon College I was prepared for each step in the path to what is now my true calling.
Andrew Breton '08
Director of Middle School Ministries, Grace Chapel
I am currently serving at Grace Chapel in Lexington, MA. I have the privilege of working with the awesome, awkward, and beautiful beings known as middle schoolers. The classes I took at Gordon taught me how to think critically about ministry. Most of my job is spent in leadership development, vision casting, managing tensions, and solving problems. These all require critical thinking and emotional intelligence skills. I found and sharpened those skills through my education at Gordon. My youth ministry professors were mentors to me as I explored and confirmed my call to ministry. I can't say enough about their expertise and encouragement over the years.
Leah Knight '08
High School Ministry Assistant, Grace Chapel
After graduating I took on an internship with the High School Ministry at Grace Chapel in Lexington, where I volunteered during my years as a student at Gordon. Since then I have been hired on staff as the High School Ministry Assistant where I have the opportunity to partner with the High School Pastor in implementing the mission, vision, and values of our ministry to students, parents, and the rest of the church body of Grace. In addition, I am pursuing a Master of Arts in Theology at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. My time at Gordon taught me above all to value intellectual honesty, faithful reverence, and abounding compassion—and this has been the impetus not only for what I do but, most of all, the kind of person I strive to be.
Morgan Schmidt '07
Director of Children, Youth, & Family Ministries
St. Andrew's Episcopal Church
I am currently doing life with students and families in Seattle, WA. My ministry has been full of glory and brokenness as I collaborate with students and volunteers to initiate and build an authentic community of students. I can't imagine a better way to spend my life than being with students and encouraging them towards becoming the young women and men that God created them to be. Together we are becoming more aware of moments where heaven and earth meet, and are seeking to be partners with God in loving and restoring the world. I also completed my Masters of Divinity degree at The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology in 2012. My time at Gordon was shaded beautifully by my relationships with mentors and peers, and provided an essential beginning to my student ministry education.
Rachel Lopez '06
Missionary, World Outreach Ministries
Belmopan, Belize, Central America
I came to Belize as a student intern, fulfilling the practicum requirement for my ministry major. During my internship I spoke with the Ministry of Human Development and Social Services and discovered their need for a girls' home. We both had a desire and vision to meet that need, so we presented a proposal to the government agencies. The Jehovah Rapha Girls Home now houses 32 girls ages 13 to 18 who have been abused, abandoned, and neglected. The need is so great. On Wednesday nights I teach Kids' Church to children ages 3 to 9. Every Saturday six of us lead Youth Night. I am also teaching 15- to 19-year-old girls. I love serving God in the country of Belize, and I love teaching children about Christ. It's been wonderful to share Christ's love with girls who have been abandoned, giving them an alternative option for how to live their lives. My studies at Gordon continue to prepare and confirm my passion to work with at-risk girls. Every class I took gave me increased knowledge on how to work with and teach at-risk youth.
Joel Gill '06
Director of Student Ministries, First Congregational Church
Center Ossipee, NH
I began serving at FCCO as the Coordinator of Senior High Ministries two weeks after I graduated. When I arrived the student ministry had a strong focus on outreach, which was great, but it didn't effectively shepherd, equip, and challenge the students in the church to make a difference to those around them. Through building relationships with students and parents, God has used me and many gifted leaders to bring balance to the ministry. Recently I began overseeing both high school and middle school ministries. One of the most rewarding aspects of my position is watching volunteers walk beside our students, encourage them in their faith, and challenge them to make a difference for God’s glory. I am passionate about developing leaders who invest in the lives of students. My time at Gordon College encouraged me to be about people. There is a time for programs, but of first importance are the relationships I am building with students, leaders, and families.
Allison Cornish ‘06
Program Coordinator, Salvation Army
Railton School for Youth Worker Training
In 2009 I joined the staff at the Salvation Army’s Railton School for Youth Worker Training. The Mission of Railton School is to equip youth workers for frontline ministries, who will be committed to reclaiming children and teens for Christ. Here I have the privilege of investing in the lives of young adults, and watching them grow as they develop spiritually and acquire the vocational and practical skills that they will need for youth ministry. Both the faculty and the coursework at Gordon helped me to think critically about the way in which I approach ministry and encouraged me to practically apply theory to real-life ministry.
Rebekah Guest '05
Performing Arts Instructor, Salvation Army Boys and Girls Clubs
Right after I graduated I served at Grace Chapel in Lexington, Massachusetts as the Kids Church Program Coordinator. I had a great time working there but wanted a change from snowy winters. I met some great people at the Salvation Army in Texas, and felt led by God to make the move south. I teach hip hop, drama, and choir to kids ages 5 to 16 involved in the after-school programs at five Boys and Girls Clubs in the Houston area. I love working with inner-city kids who cannot normally afford dance or music lessons. It's a new opportunity for kids to discover talents they never knew they had. I am honored to be a part of that. It is also a great opportunity to share my faith with kids who may not attend church regularly and show them how to use their talents to worship God. My time at Gordon really influenced how I relate to the kids. I can always find creative ways to start conversations about Christ through music and the arts. My studies also helped me to partner with parents, pastors, directors, and donors in a professional manner.
Aaron Thompson '04
Young Adult Pastor & Church Planter, Fiskebäcks Missionskyrka
I was honored to serve as Senior Class President at Gordon College and completed my M.Div. at North Park Theological Seminary in 2007. I then began serving as a missionary and ordained pastor in Gothenburg, Sweden through The Evangelical Covenant Church of America (ECC). After three years as youth pastor at Fisher's Creek International Church, a part of Fiskebäck’s Mission Church in the suburb of Gothenburg, I was called to serve as young adult pastor in Fiskebäck’s Mission Church to reach a missing-generation. This adventure involved starting The Well, which became a multi-cultural ministry driven to proclaim and demonstrate God's love to the world. With a positive response to The Well, I was asked by the Swedish Mission Church denomination (SMK) to be a church planter in Gothenburg. The passion of this church plant is to minister with refugees, immigrants, and national Swedes alike. I was married in June 2010 and live in Fiskebäck with my Swedish wife Stina.
Andrew Beach '03
Junior High Youth Pastor
First Evangelical Church of Memphis
After graduating I participated in the Fellows Program at Falls Church in Falls Church, Virginia with the high school youth ministry. Following my year at Falls Church I accepted a call to First Evangelical Church in Memphis, Tennessee. I love that my ministry involves investing myself in students for the sake of Christ, which allows me to see God work in people's lives. My position also has tremendous variety—any given day, any given week I am doing something different. Studying youth ministries at Gordon gave me experience in the exact field I knew God wanted me to pursue. My coursework taught me how to follow the life and example of the ministry of Jesus; how to effectively communicate to teenagers; how to interact with and resolve difficult situations; and it gave me a library of books that I still go back to for wisdom and insight. My education at Gordon also showed me how to practically and strategically plan for ministry.
Todd Szymczak '97
Pastor of Student Ministries, Grace Chapel
I have been in youth ministry since graduation. My first church was small, and I did most of the ministry myself. But as the ministry grew, I began to develop a team. At my second church the ministry was larger. While I still did a lot of the ministry myself, I had to rely more heavily on leaders to walk with students. Here at Grace Chapel, I have had to rely completely on a team approach to be effective with students since this is a very large church. Each role has been a learning process that has led me to this position. My current role is to cast a vision to reach and grow students, train a team of volunteers to walk alongside students, and reach out into our community to share Christ's love. I desire to be a lifelong learner and my experience at Gordon helped me embrace that value, specifically not just what to think, but how to think. My experience at Gordon helped me learn to be a strategic thinker and develop specific strategies for growth.
Jeff Lander '95
Missionary, USA Venture Teams Manager
Children of the Nations
Gordon College prepared me for real life ministry. As an experiential learner, I struggled with classroom lectures and tests, but Gordon broadened my ability to learn through hands-on training. I really valued the opportunity that Gordon students have to "plug in" to with local community ministries, churches, and mission trips. It allowed me to apply what I was learning in the classroom to the real world. Because of that, I thrived as a Youth Pastor for 13 years following graduation. In 2007 my family and I moved into full-time mission work with Children of the Nations, a non-profit, Christ-centered organization dedicated to caring for orphaned and destitute children in Africa and the Dominican Republic. I connect with people who have a passion for children and a desire to use their skills, talents and God-given gifts to change lives through mission trips. I praise God for Gordon's impact on my life, as He's used me to bring hope and lasting change to the lives of thousands of children and youth all around the globe.