Welcoming the Opportunity:
Austin is someone you could call a fixture of UCM. It is not really hyperbole to say that if the building is open, you will find Austin at a table downstairs. Austin is a student who has truly found a home at UCM. Austin’s family lives in Fayetteville, so UCM is his on-campus hub for his time between classes. We were excited to hear that Austin wanted to step into a leadership role in the ministry. Austin has been active in our programs throughout his time at the U of A and connecting through the Lilly internship seemed like a good opportunity for us both before he graduates in May.
“I have participated in UCM activities and enjoyed its benefits for the last four years and I thought it was high time for me to give back in any way I could. A surprising benefit is also being able to make a concrete change in an institution I love, in my case with the endowment funds.” -Austin
Austin has taken on the task of researching the various investment funds offered through the Texas Presbyterian Foundation and it has been great to see him use what he is learning in his course-work at the U of A to help UCM make the best plans for investing the money we have. He is also reading A Spirituality of Fundraising by Henri Nouwen and participates in the monthly intern training and regular mentoring. In addition to his Leadership Initiative internship and being a full time student, Austin serves in the Arkansas National Guard.
“Austin is getting to see a different side of UCM through his internship. He has a servant’s heart, helping wherever he can in whatever manner he can. Even though he is involved with the financial side of the ministry now, he still carries in cases of soda when I come back from Sam’s or takes out the trash when it’s full!”- Susan Rose, Campus Minister
“I really like digging into the details of the UCM- how it works, how it is funded, and where we can channel its resources to help it grow even more.” – Austin
We are looking forward to seeing the ways that the leadership training and investment goal setting creates a bridge for Austin to his next steps after graduation.
“I am looking forward to seeing the effects of my project down the road, but that will not be for a while. I hope that it flourishes and provides a good base for the UCM to operate for many years to come. The training has helped me by giving me inspiration on possible avenues of approach to reach our goal, some I would not have considered otherwise.” -Austin