My name is Orianne Sagrada and I am from Philo, CA. I was born and raised in the Philippines until my mother and I moved out to California in 2000. I attended a very small public high school with a graduating class of 35. Though I had fond memories of my high school days, I never felt that I belonged. I was yearning for something more. I knew once I graduated, I wanted to attend a Christian university where I would be surrounded with like-minded individuals who would help me grow in my faith. When I was a junior in high school, my pastor gave me a booklet that contained information on all of the Assemblies of God Christian universities in the United States. In the spring of 2008, my mother and I visited Vanguard and I immediately fell in love with the campus and the area. I felt a sense of serenity and safety when I stepped foot on campus. I knew that Vanguard was the right school for me!
After receiving my acceptance letter to Vanguard, I prayed that somehow God would provide financial aid. My parents are small farmers in Northern California and I knew finances were going to be a concern. Higher education is costly and I was worried that we would not be able to afford Vanguard. My mother is a strong woman of faith, and her reply was, “God has always been faithful to us. Just pray and don’t worry!” My prayers were answered! I received a letter stating that I was a recipient of a presidential scholarship and as long as I maintained a good GPA, the scholarship would carry through the rest of my college career. If it weren’t for my scholarship and generous donors, I wouldn’t be attending this university. I am blessed to be serving a faithful God.
My journey here at Vanguard University has been a tremendous blessing that I will cherish for the rest of my life. My four years as a student have developed me into the person I am today. The developmental stages have been filled with joy, laughter, mistakes, and tears, but despite the ups-and-downs, all of my experiences will forever be treasured. Most treasured are the relationships I’ve developed with faculty, staff, and life-long friendships. In a larger university, students can become numbers to their professors. Here at Vanguard, professors care deeply about their students, and they treat us like their own children. That to me is so amazing!
I will be pursuing my Master’s in International Studies at Chapman University this coming fall. The international studies program will equip me in attaining a job in the State Department or the United Nations, which has been my dream. My ultimate goal is to become the United States Ambassador of the Philippines. However, wherever God wants me to go or wants me to do, I will follow the calling He has planned for me. In The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren he states, ““You cannot fulfill God’s purposes for your life while focusing on your own plans.” I have always been a planner; growing up I had a plan for my life, but as I am getting older, I’ve realized that plans always change. Therefore, I am letting God take full control or to simply put it: He is my director, and I am the actor. To me, success is not about financial stability or being powerful, but it is finding joy in what you do. I pray every day that God will align my career and purpose. My motto is: “Do your best and God will do the rest!” I will continue to live by this motto as I pursue my goals and aspirations.