Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Another Year & Another Journey

Thank you to Micah Muma, 2nd year Shepherds College student, for writing today's blog.

Another year and another journey up ahead, stored up ready to show itself. I look back, and I can see that being a 2nd year has such a different method than the 1st year – different struggles. Now, all the responsibilities are on us in Home B – doing the grocery list with the group, making sure we don’t stay up too late at night, getting up for class in time. I know I have more ways to prove to myself that I can do this and graduate.

 I remember when I had instantly wanted to become a 2nd year - when I heard there was more freedom. But it was only half true. Yes, I had more privileges and such, but I wasn’t going to be totally free and be able to not do anything. As I started my 2nd year, I knew it would be a little better and a bit more of an uphill challenge. 

Challenges came and gave me struggles – it was hard doing my chores and homework instead of playing around! - and I knew it wouldn’t be long until I was going to fail at certain areas like in relationships and trying to move on in specific areas. My parents almost pulled the plug, and I knew I had to do better or else it would’ve been a waste of time for them as well as me. 

My challenges aren’t easy nor are they a memory I’d love to keep. So I moved on, as best as I could. I thank God for all His wonders and His grace and patience with me. I throw all my problems towards God as if he’ll take them away, and I’m usually better the very next day. 

Every day, my classes roll on, and I’m starting to do well. Culinary Class so far has been my favorite. All the amazing dishes have my parents wanting me to cook for them which makes perfect sense, so it looks like I’ll be busy cooking even after my Christmas break. Our Chef, she’s amazing and has given me so many ideas. I long to one day work on a cruise ship, yet I have to work hard to achieve my dreams and goals. 

So, as I said, another year and another unexpected journey up ahead. I pray every day to stay strong to my true self and my life. I can now see myself one day graduating and saying, “I made it.”

Shepherds College - Guiding Your Transition to Appropriate Independence. Please visit us at

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

(Semi)Wordless Wednesday

If you’re engaged in social media, and since you’re reading this blog there’s a good chance you are, you may be familiar with Facebook’s Wordless Wednesdays. This is a day when some individuals and organizations decide to post a picture that “says it all” without using any words.

Now, that’s all well and good, but I’m a writer who loves to read. I like words, so Wordless Wednesdays are not really my cup of tea.

But every once in a while, I come across a picture that really speaks to me and I’ve decided that, rather than simply posting it in the ‘Stroll around Campus’ photo album on facebook and risk it getting hidden with all the other photos, I would highlight it in an occasional (Semi)Wordless Wednesday post for you to enjoy as well. It won’t always be the clearest picture, but I hope it will inspire emotions and thoughts that will help you understand the story of Shepherds College. That’s the “wordless” part. 

Sometimes the “semi” part will come from you. I want to hear the word or phrase that came to mind when you first saw the picture. It will help feed my word-loving soul. Please post your thoughts in either the blog or facebook comments.

Sometimes, the “semi” part will come from me if I feel the picture needs to be put into context. 

I saw this photo op from down the hallway and rushed up to it praying the whole way, “God, please don’t let them move. Keep them still, don’t let them move.” They didn’t move.

Here is today’s picture:

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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Road to Success

The hope of all the faculty and staff of Shepherds College is that each student who goes through our program reaches his or her fullest potential as a purposefully created human being.

How do we help the students get to that point?

It may mean challenging a student academically, or pushing him in Special Olympics, or placing him in social situations that could take him out of his comfort zone.

It could mean repeated reminders about chores, reassuring Bible verses written out on notebook covers, unwanted (by students and advisors!) disciplinary actions, or awards during Time to Shine.

It may mean that a day at Shepherds College starts with tears of frustration and ends with high fives and fist bumps. 

It means seeing and believing in each student’s God-given abilities and encouraging every smidgen of talent, skill and strength out of her through instruction, repetition, reinforcement, sensitivity, and love until the student can see and believe in her abilities on her own.

It means a lot of hard work, diligence, courage and faith.

It also means watching each student don a gray cap and gown on graduation day and walk out the doors of the school to a life of hope and possibility – a meaningful job? A closer relationship to God? An apartment shared with a friend? Volunteer work? Marriage? New skills? A greater sense of responsibility?

Whatever it looks like - this “fullest potential” - it’s the triumphant result of a partnership between the student, his parents, Shepherds College and God.

It is success.

The current students of Shepherds College know what it takes to get to this point – they are walking that path right now - and they want to share what they’ve learned with the incoming Class of 2017:

“Do your homework! Doing your homework helps you grow and learn. If you don’t do your homework, teachers will be very unhappy and your grades will go down. If you are having complications with your homework, do not hesitate to ask them. They are here to help you in any way they can.”  ~ Sarah

“Focus on God and school work. Read God’s Word and put it into action. These will be the best three years of your life at Shepherds College, but you have to make them your best.” ~ Anthony

“Know the teachers and res life staff are there for you when you need them.” ~ Crystal

“Have a great time at Shepherds College and also make great friendships. You will have homework, but nothing that will overwhelm you. Take your final exams. You will get your own locker to keep your books and other stuff in there as well.” ~ Kathryn

“Do not be nervous and always be honest. Have fun within reason. Enjoy your time at Shepherds College. It’s only three years. Make an impact on people in your college community. Be a light to people around you for Jesus calls us who are Christians to be ambassadors of Christ. Even in the tough times, it’s important to be on your guard. Guard your heart and your words that you speak to others because words that speak edifying things bring up your peers. I would like to wish all the first-years luck for the next year. May God bless you in everything that you do and say.” ~ Wade

“Learn your strengths. Shepherds College is a very good school.” ~ Ryan

“Do not use technology after 9pm. If you use technology after 9pm, you will be tired.” ~ Andrew

“Follow the rules without complaint.” ~ Jonathan

“If you feel frustrated with the other students, find staff and never fight. Also, if you want to join any of the clubs, don’t be shy. Join the club.” ~ Joey

“Do good in school. Don’t be lazy. Work hard, study, start strong, finish strong. Remember to please God in all you do. Stay encouraged.” ~ Willetta

“I would tell you that to be successful you better be ready to work hard.” ~ Nathan

“Keep learning in class. Ask questions to the people around you.” ~ Nick

“I would say do your homework and work hard in everything you do.” ~ Ellie

“Respect the staff and students.” ~ Matt

“Responsibility. When you come to Shepherds College, you want to learn to be on your own and independent.” ~ Isaac

“Make new friends. Have fun. Learn new things.” ~ Geovanni

“There are sports that you can be on. Work hard and do your best. Have fun!” ~ Julian

“Being successful at Shepherds College is to be a great student. Be here. Make it your best time.” ~ Christi

“Make a ton of great friends and teachers. Do a ton of activities and you will have a ton of fun at college.” ~ Grant

“Try not to get involved with the students of the opposite gender. They are just trouble and draining. And don’t gossip. Also, if you have a problem with another student, the staff won’t fix it for you. Instead, they will help you solve it yourself because they are training you for life.” ~ Suzanne

“Just be yourself, trust in the Lord and He will guide you to greatness.” ~ Tommy

“Do some hard work to earn your stay.” ~ Kirsten

“Be diligent in homework, chores, etc. Be respectful of staff and others. Learn and have fun.” ~ Krista

“Listen to staff and teachers. The rules are important to protect you from bad mistakes.” ~ Philip

“Do not make the same mistakes that I did in the past. Listen to me because I will be a good leader and give good advice and be a good example for the new students.” ~ David

“Just be yourself, study hard, relax, don’t get stressed and just have fun.” ~ Cherokee

“Focus on the growth of yourself, and enjoy your time as a first-year because it will go by fast.” ~ Ashley

“Follow the school policies, don’t be disrespectful, and have fun.” ~ Torrey

“Train hard for a job.” ~ Miranda

Plan to be faithful to do your school work.” ~ Bethany

“Read the blog. There is a lot of good stuff on there to help you learn about the college. You can comment on it. Keep looking to the future. You have a whole new world ahead of you. Have fun!” ~ Dallas

“Make the right choices and you will not get into trouble or get demerits.” ~ Donovan

“Don’t be scared. There is nothing to be afraid of. When I was a first-year, I didn’t know anyone, but I made friends quickly. When you are a third-year, you will have a ton of friends.” ~ Daniela

“You should follow the rules. If you follow the rules you will be able to do more things like being able to do a lot of the activities.” ~ Nikki

 “Follow the rules. Be respectful of staff and other students. Meet different people in other dorm rooms.” ~ Christian

“Have a fun time. Learn to be friendly and open-minded to the new ideas you learn at Shepherds College.” ~ Sean

“Learn your Bible verses, memorize them and do a good job with your cleaning chores.” ~ Joshua

“As long as you keep up with your chores, get homework done, follow the rules and listen to staff, you will do just fine.” ~ Katy

“Do everything to the best of your ability. The staff at Shepherds College will help you grow more independent after college.” ~ Olya

“Stay focused and stay faithful to yourself. Stay strong and never give up in any circumstance. Honor God, and He will give you an amazing journey of a life.” ~ Micah

So there you have it – great advice for a successful three years at Shepherds College and a future filled with the fullest potential.

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