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24Sep 19

Unexpected Changes ~ Ebenezer Ojo

Ebenezer Ojo is a junior majoring in Biochemistry. He shared this story during Sunday Worship on September 22nd, 2019. You can listen to it here. So a little bit about me. I was born in Nigeria and moved to Minnesota when I was about three years old. I grew up in a family with African parents who were very strict. So strict that I couldn’t even have sleepovers with the next door neighbor. So leaving home and coming to a place where I could be fully independent was refreshing but at the same time was a bit overwhelming as a freshmen coming to Madison. I was excited to be in a new community and to find new interests and people with the same commonalities as me. I came in with the idea that I would be able to do many different things and finding close friends would be easy and…

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17Sep 19

Looking for Spiritual Community ~ Shaniya Auxier

Shaniya Auxier is a second year student. She shared this story at Sunday Worship on September 15th, 2019. You can also listen to it here. Hey, y’all! I’m Shaniya, a second year studying Psychology with a certificate in Gender and Women’s studies, if you didn’t know, and I am delighted to share my coming to Pres House story with you. Unlike some others that I’ve met, I did not find Pres House right away. After Convocation, I came to Frunch, hopefully like many of you, and when I left, I didn’t step on Pres House property again until that October. The truth is, I wanted to be apart of a spiritual community; I wanted to find a church home on campus, but I was terrified. My family identifies as Christian, but doesn’t really practice or attend church, and when we did, all I had were negative experiences. So it was…

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10Sep 19

Finding Friends ~ Jacob Dahl

Jacob Dahl is a Chemistry major in his third year at UW-Madison. He shared this story from his freshman year at Sunday Worship on September 8th, 2019. You can also listen to it here. Hello, my name is Jacob Dahl. Freshman year, I didn’t know what I was doing. I had no friends, no idea where I’d be living next year, first time away from home, and college is hard. What I really needed however were some friends, which I happened to find here at Pres House. I’ve always had a hard time with friends as a child. Growing up in a small town and having the interests of reading, playing Nintendo video games, and disliking sports is just far enough out there that almost no one wanted to be my friend. I was also massively introverted and bad at talking to people. I still am, occasionally just saying whatever…

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21Aug 19

“What I Wish I Knew” – Advice for New Graduate Students

We asked experienced graduate students at UW-Madison what they wished they knew when they started as a new grad student. We hope you can learn from their advice for new graduate students! And this is just some of their wisdom. Come on over to Pres House on Tuesday, September 10 at 7pm for "What I Wish I Knew as a New Grad Student" to meet other grad students, enjoy dessert, and hear first-hand from experienced students what they wish they had known as new graduate students. And check out how to get connected to the Graduate Student Fellowship at Pres House. So here it is: "What I wish I knew" - advice for new graduate students: ON MOVING: What was something you wish you had brought with you to Madison that you didn't? What was something you brought that you didn't need? I wish I brought a bike to Madison. I moved…

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21Aug 19

“What I Wish I Knew” – Advice for Freshmen Students

We asked returning students at UW-Madison what they wished they knew when they started on campus as Freshmen. We hope you can learn from their advice for freshmen students! And this is just some of their wisdom. Come on over to Pres House on Monday, September 2 at 1pm for "What I Wish I Knew as a Freshmen" to meet other freshmen, enjoy Babcock ice cream, and hear first-hand from experienced students what they wish they had known as freshmen. And check out how lots of other ways to get connected at Pres House. So here it is: "What I wish I knew" - advice for freshmen students: ON MOVING: What was something you wish you had brought with you to campus that you didn't? What was something you brought that you didn't need? I brought way too much stuff, be conscious of the size of your new living space! I also…

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29May 19

Graduation Reflection – Samuel Acuna

Samuel A. Acuña graduated from UW-Madison in May 2019 with a Ph.D in Mechanical Engineering. You can also listen to his reflection here.  Back in the year 2012, I made the decision to go to graduate school. I was ready for a change in life, and so I figured I would move out to a fun city for one year, grab a master’s degree, and then head back to Seattle and work as an engineer. So in the summer of 2013, I showed up in Madison sight-unseen with as much stuff as I could fit into the two suitcases I was permitted on the airplane. I didn’t know anything about Madison, didn’t know anybody even near the Midwest, and had no clue what to expect in graduate school (PhD!). I had found some other graduate students on Craiglist and decided to live in their spare bedroom, and one of these…

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29May 19

Graduation Reflection – Clare Aeschbacher

Clare Aeschbacher graduated from UW-Madison in May 2019 with degrees in Environmental Sciences and Community & Environmental Sociology and a certificate in Sustainability. You can also listen to their reflection here. Early in my sophomore year of college, I decided that it was time for me to find a faith community on campus. I figured I’d try out a bunch of churches and groups and eventually settle on one I liked the most. However, this plan quickly changed after I visited Pres House for the first time. Though it was only the second of my church visits, I knew right away that I found the right community and I needed not look any further. Within the first few minutes of my visit, I was greeted by Billie Scambler, who I had met briefly the year before as we lived in the same dorm, though on different floors. The music team…

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28May 19

Graduation Reflections – Rebecca Bedell

Becca Bedell graduated with a MFA in Poetry at UW-Madison in May 2019. Upon graduation, she joined the staff as Coordinator of Residential Programs in the Pres House Apartments. You can also listen to her reflection here. Mishka and I arrived in Madison in August 2017 as bright-eyed new graduate students in poetry.  We spent the first eight weeks bonding as we church-hopped together, both of us looking for a warm, challenging, and outspokenly queer-affirming congregation.  When we visited Pres House as the fourth or fifth church in town, I knew right away that I had found my new spiritual home.  There was the cozy yet lively space and music, there was the delicious weekly communion, there was Steven Chapman excitedly discussing Taylor Swift over dinner, and it helped that the median age was around 20 rather than 65. Since then, I’ve poured myself into Pres House: I shared a…

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