“My name is Kayla Gillenwater. I am a senior at King University. I enjoy traveling in my free time as well as cooking. I currently work full time as a CT Technologist while attending King to work toward my bachelor’s in biology. I wanted to further my education so I can better serve my community as well as my family. This is my first year as a TA for Foundations of Christian Thought, and I have very much enjoyed working with the students in this course. I first took this class my Junior year at King and enjoyed how eye-opening the material and how interactive the class was. I even was able to attend a trip to Israel with King.”
We are so glad to have Kayla with us before she graduates and moves on to great and good things. In class last year, Kayla and I discovered we both came from the same little place in SW Virginia–Yuma. Our families had/have places just a few miles apart. I love it that King still serves students in Southern Appalachia (a-pa-Latch-a, please). Kayla is smart and hard-working. She impressed me when we traveled to Israel-Palestine last March–she was up for any and every food. Respect.
“I love my job. For almost fifteen years I have gotten to work in the incredibly fulfilling and flat-out-fun field of youth ministry. It is an honor to be part of a student’s faith development as they weather the teenage years. Working in youth ministry is very exciting, but there is also no shortage of trails or heartache. That is why I am so thankful for the education I received at King.
No other span of time in my life has carried a greater impact on who I am or what I do than my four years at King. As a student, King provided me with many opportunities to learn though service and study. I loved taking part in student led worship on campus and partnering with our chaplain to organize chapel services. I was pushed outside of my normal boundaries on culture tours and developed a heart for missions on spring break mission trips.
My classes in Bible and Religion challenged and greatly strengthened my faith. I learned effective and responsible ways to study the Bible. My youth ministry classes taught me ministry models and communication techniques that I employ daily. Basically, Bible and religion showed me what to teach; youth ministry showed me how to teach it.
When I graduated, I was in the unique position to turn down job offers. While many of my friends had to continue their education in grad school to find employment, I found many churches that were eager to hire. I worked as a full time youth pastor for seven years before entering seminary. My education at King more than prepared me to face the rigors of seminary.
After working at a wonderful church in my home state of West Virginia for almost nine years I got the opportunity to move back to Bristol where I now serve as the Associate Pastor of Youth and Teaching at Discovery Church. Being in Bristol has brought me full circle and now I get to work as a professor of youth ministry at King. I love getting to mentor a new generation of youth workers in the same way I was mentored at King.
Youth ministry is perfect for anyone looking for a fun and fulfilling career that makes a serious impact on our world; and King University provides the education you need to get a job doing it.”
We are extremely proud to have Elliott as as graduate of King. And now we are also fortunate to have him as a faculty member in King Bible and Religion. Elliott brings his experience and expertise to our Youth Ministry track and minor–we couldn’t do it without him. He also teaches Foundations of Christian Thought and Practice. Thank you, Elliott, for all you do for King, Bible and Religion, and our Bristol community.
“Hey everyone! My name is Adeline Campbell, and I am from Abingdon, Virginia. I am a sophomore, majoring in nursing and minoring in psychology. I plan on becoming a travel nurse. I also have an on-campus work study position. In my free time, I love to travel, hike, paddle board, play volleyball, and hang out with friends and family. I took Foundations of Christian thought and practice my very first semester at King and absolutely loved it. I was honored when Dr. Hudson asked me to be a TA. This is my second semester as a TA. It has been such an awesome experience getting to know students and making personal connections. This past spring, I was blessed to have the opportunity to travel to Israel with Dr. Hudson and several other TA’s. The trip to Israel will always have a special place in my heart through all the relationships and memories made.”
As Adeline says, this is her second semester with us, and we are the fortunate ones. She is also the third Campbell sister to attend King and serve as a TA for Foundations. She is from a fantastic family in Abingdon, and they have sent all 3 of their daughters to study with us. We had a great time in Israel-Palestine and found a great coffee shop in the old city. Thank you, Adeline, for all you do for your students. You will be a fantastic nurse in the years to come. We need more like you.