What is important to you about partnering with Twin Cities communities outside of Bethel?
I have discovered that working alongside community partners brings out so much truth, beauty and richness in life. As I had the honor of knowing community partners, I was able to see the world from other perspectives and develop relationships that changed my life.
How do these partnerships relate to your experience as an Act Six Fellow?
As an Act Six Fellow, these partnerships have allowed me to continue my development as a leader while learning from local community leaders. Act Six has a core value of returning to our communities to effect meaningful change and the people I have been around have given me the opportunity to continue to usher in change. These changes are not only social changes within the community, but also deep within my own soul. Partnerships with organizations such as Urban Farm and Garden Alliance and We Resolve have given me the opportunity to see leadership shaped in a variety of ways. Each of the partnerships has also allowed me to engage with communities and individuals with different stories than mine, just as Act Six has done too.
As a double major in Nursing and Reconciliation, how do you see these practices informing or interacting with each other as you move through the world?
During my university experience, many people were curious to know why I chose reconciliation and nursing as my specialties. While many people may find this unusual, I found the two to be extremely complementary in the most beautiful way. In the classroom, nursing allowed me to practice mostly left-brain thinking and evidence-based practice, while reconciliation studies gave me the space to use my right-brain through storytelling, creativity, the wisdom of others’ experiences and the use of dialogue tools. As I go beyond Bethel, I know that nursing and reconciliation studies will enable me to address and recognize social inequalities and barriers within the health system that significantly affect individuals and their health. My experience studying both will also allow me to see beyond diagnoses and help me see and treat patients holistically.
What do you plan to do after you graduate?
I hope to continue to use my experiences to increase health care access, cultural awareness, and inclusivity within health systems by maintaining and developing relationships with people who face these barriers firsthand. . I don’t know what it will be like, but I trust that God will point me to opportunities as I continue to use Jesus’ example to model love in our broken world.
What was mentoring like while you were at Bethel? In what ways have you seen yourself growing under this direction and investment in your story?
I’ve had a few women come to my side who have really encouraged and challenged me over the past few years. They provided spaces for me to be fully seen and known by sharing my views and experiences. I grew as I was able to pick up different wisdoms from each of these individuals, and they gave me the gift of seeing my experiences in a new light. One of the greatest gifts they gave me was a better understanding of boundaries, trust in God, and soul care. They demonstrated, both by words and deeds, the importance of valuing ourselves as God does. It has been incredibly transformative for me and I am extremely grateful for their guidance and partnership.
Could you share a bit of your point of view on faith and/or on God?
The God of my dreams is a gentle but fervent God. It holds us, encourages us to breathe deeply. He wants to know the smallest details of our lives. He waits patiently and recognizes our potential. The parts of ourselves that we want to hide, He holds them with tenderness and shows us why there is nothing to be ashamed of.
Would you mind sharing how your faith has grown throughout your time at Bethel?
When I entered Bethel, I believed that God had high standards and expectations for me. It gave me little room to recognize my humanity and learn from my own experiences. Through my Reconciliation Studies courses and my partnerships, my faith has become more centered on the idea that God wants an intimacy with us that is chosen and not forced. He wants us to remember him through the way he shaped nature and designed human relationships. He sent Jesus to earth to demonstrate this and to remind mankind of our need for salvation and partnership with God and with others.
What was the highlight of your Bethel experience?
The highlight of my Bethel experience was the opportunity to work in partnership with members of the community and share many wonderful experiences. Some of the dearest mentors and friends I have met have had experiences of partnership. They really transformed my heart and mind. College has been the hardest part of my life to date, for a plethora of reasons, and without these intentional partnerships and conversations within the classroom and with mentors, I don’t know where I would be today. today.