CORBAN FUND: MEET OUR STUDENTS
When you give to the Corban Fund, you provide scholarships for many of the students attending Corban University. Your gift not only impacts the lives of these students, but also has a global impact as Corban students and alumni go out into the world to make a difference for Jesus Christ.
Associated Student Body (ASB) President Cecilee Russell’s enthusiasm for service and leadership is immediately apparent when speaking with her. She is currently serving in her third year on the student leadership team and will graduate this year with a business degree.
As part of the 2015 “Lead It” conference and her connection with North Salem High School, she is also taking the gospel of Christ’s love and leadership training into Salem high schools.
“I really believe in the mission of student leadership,” Russell said. “In this role, you have access to thousands of young people who are ready and willing to latch on to great vision and ideas. I’m such a sucker for potential in people; that’s why I love student leadership. I get to pinpoint potential in people and plug them into places where they can get involved. I encourage them to go in directions that they may have never thought about.”
Russell’s dream of attending Corban was nearly dashed when she found out a merit-based scholarship she had applied for didn’t come through. Devastated, she remained hopeful that God would provide, even though she was on her own to figure out how to cover the cost of tuition.
“I knew I was going to come here to Corban,” she said, “I just didn’t know how.”
At the last minute, the Lord did provide a way for her, in the form of a track scholarship that was four times the amount track coach Norm Berney had originally offered her. She says, “I am so grateful that coach Berney decided to invest me, making it possible for me to attend Corban. My time here has completely transformed me and my relationship with my family.
Russell’s time at Corban has also transformed the way that she leads, and the way she approaches strategies and situations. She has learned to create change in a careful, intentional and God-glorifying way.
“I know now that not everything has to be perfect; it’s better to stumble forward than it is to stay stuck,” she said. “I’ve been encouraged to take risks, and if I fail, I have so many people to carry me.”
After she graduates in April of this year, Russell will continue to seek out leadership opportunities in higher education. “I’m open to working anywhere, but the need is so great in secular schools for Christ-centered leadership,” she said. “I want to go where there is a need; rather than where it’s safe and easy.”
2015 alumnus Kellen Luey didn’t originally plan to attend Corban University; in fact, it wasn’t even a top choice. But God had a different plan for him. And so did Head Men’s Soccer Coach Aaron Lewis, who recruited Luey for the Corban team.
Looking back, Luey says everything just fell into place—the opportunity to be a part of the team as well as the athletic and academic scholarships that he received in order to attend. As an accounting major, he was able to take advantage of unique opportunities at Corban and beyond, including internships, participation in real-world business projects and travel to Washington, D.C. to meet with political, business and religious leaders at the National Prayer Breakfast.
Luey says, “Corban does a good job of putting students in a position to be successful. I’ve been able to grow in experience, and I’m really grateful I was able to attend Corban because I’ve been blessed with so many opportunities.”
As three-year captain of the Corban soccer team, Luey shared in the glory of victory and bitterness of defeat with his teammates, as they won regular season and conference championships en route to reaching the national tournament. Individually, Luey received both first-team academic all-american honors for two consecutive years, and the A.O. Duer Award—a national honor given annually to one male and one female student-athlete.
Ultimately, the time Luey spent in Bible and theology classes impacted him the most. “The theology classes really challenged me to think about why I believe what I believe, and how to articulate my faith to others,” he said.
Overall, Luey is convinced he couldn’t have had a better or more meaningful college experience anywhere else.
“I learned a lot from my time at Corban,” he said, “but I also developed amazing relationships with my classmates, professors, faculty and the community. There aren’t many places like Corban where you can combine what you learn in the classroom and your daily life in such a meaningful way.”