When Elizabeth Vasquez stepped out to deliver the opening remarks at the 2013 Sustainability Conference, she couldn’t help but marvel at how far she had come.
Wow, my time at Vanguard flew by before I knew it! My name is Clinton Munoz; I’m twenty-two years old and just graduated this past May with a degree in Business Administration. My hometown is Kingsburg, CA. It is one of those towns off the 99 freeway that if you blink, you’ve probably missed it. You can’t even walk down the street without seeing a familiar face or going to the super market without running into a close friend. One reason I chose Vanguard was because of the same “close family” feeling that I felt on campus- just like I had back home.
The first time I visited the campus was during a PreVU event. A few of the Juniors and Seniors at Vanguard found out I played worship and asked if I would grab my guitar and lead us in some songs. I was so nervous but within half an hour there were twenty-five people singing in the lobby, praying, and worshipping together. It was then that I knew Jesus was living and moving at Vanguard and I wanted to be a part of it.
Honestly I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for the Lord guiding my steps at Vanguard. I had the opportunity to lead worship not only on campus, but also in Germany, Portugal, France and China through Vanguard Singers and Band. I chose Vanguard in the beginning for music, but that changed quickly when I realized my gifting and passion for business. All of my experiences taught me new things about myself and challenged and encouraged my walk with Christ.
Vanguard also was able to help me financially coming out of high school. I got a letter in the mail saying I received financial aid and I ran into the kitchen telling my mom and dad, “The Lord has opened up the door for me to go!” Without financial aid, I would not have been able to pursue an education at Vanguard. I received a music scholarship and an academic scholarship. I want to thank all of the supporters of Vanguard that helped make this great education a reachable goal. Because of them my life was changed and I have been able to strengthen my faith in the Lord and discover the gifts He has given me.
There is one more reason I am so thankful that I was able to attend Vanguard…and that is because I met my future wife here. I will be getting married to Charity Rouland in less than twenty days (but who’s counting) and I couldn’t be more blessed! I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with God’s beautiful daughter. I also am grateful to have a job at Morgan Stanley Wealth Management where I am finding out what God wants to do with me as I serve as a client sales associate. This next season of life is going to be one full of adventure, new experiences and full of faith. When following the Lord, one can expect nothing less than unending grace and a life full of excitement.
My name is Justin McIntee and growing up in Newport Beach, I had heard of the small private Christian university in Costa Mesa called Southern California College, now Vanguard. However, I didn’t know this was where God would be directing my path.
Today, God is the center of my life. My identity in Him has significantly impacted all the roles in my life including husband, father, business professional, and friend. However, my life purpose has not always been so clear. I grew up in a home riddled with drugs and alcohol. By the time I was exposed to these things, it was natural for me to partake in a similar lifestyle being modeled in my home. I eventually became a Christian and found my way to Vanguard by receiving a basketball scholarship. Financial aid was the sole reason that I was able to attend Vanguard. Without that, I would not have attended VU and who knows how my life would have turned out.
It was during my time at Vanguard that my life was changed forever. I didn’t necessarily recognize it at the time, but I was being exposed to the truth of who I really was in Christ Jesus. The seeds of trust and faith in God were being planted in my heart during those formative years. The transformation in my life that started at Vanguard and the joy, peace, and fulfillment that I now have in my life is truly a miracle, and for that I am grateful.
In addition to my spiritual formation, I was also being equipped with a solid foundation of education to help me be successful in business. Faculty, staff, and coaches knew me by name, served as mentors, and helped me to not only graduate, but excel in the classroom. To this day, I am still in touch with many of my faculty and friends.
Last, but certainly not least, I met my wife Joelle during my time at Vanguard. We recently celebrated our 10-year wedding anniversary and have two beautiful children, Estella (6) and Quinn (3). Joelle is my rock and Christ is the center of our marriage and family.
It is with a renewed sense of gratitude that I am privileged with the opportunity to lead the development efforts on campus. I have always wanted to see the quality of the facilities at Vanguard, match the quality of the student experience. Now I have the opportunity to be a facilitator of generosity in an effort to make that dream become a reality.
I welcome the opportunity to connect with you over coffee to hear how Vanguard has impacted your life. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 714-966-5440.
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.
Stories formed out of the halls of Vanguard University are always rich with tradition, heritage, and innovation. And people are always at the top of Vanguard’s list of values. This year is no different as the Department of Business and Management at Vanguard University marks its 40th anniversary.
Alums who are counting the costs
In the world of accounting and finance, where stress can run high and the smallest mistakes can be of greatest importance, there is also an opportunity for the light of Christ to shine brightly.
Tennis was always Yagor’s first love. In high school he went to a tournament in the United States and realized that he wanted to attend an American University.