Deep in the Heart of Texas 

Deep in the Heart of Texas 

Kaitlyn Lively

For Yu Hu, a Southwestern Adventist University (SWAU) senior psychology major and 2021-2022 student association (SA) president, the SWAU experience goes far beyond the physical boundaries of campus. As someone who grew up in Shanghai, China, and moved to the United States for high school and college, life in Texas brought new experiences, friendships and memories that she will cherish for a lifetime. Hu took a leap of faith to create a full SWAU experience when she joined the campus family as a freshman.

Hu initially came to North Texas in 2015. She enrolled in North Dallas Adventist Academy located in Richardson, Texas. Throughout her time in high school, she grew to love the diversity of experiences North Texas brought and sought to remain in the area for college. SWAU soon became her first choice.

“For me, I was looking for three things as I applied for college,” shares Hu. “First and foremost, I wanted a Christ-centered campus experience. Second, I hoped to find a campus filled with diversity of thought and experience. Lastly, I really wanted to stay in the DFW metroplex. SWAU offered all three and much more.”

While Hu didn’t know many people when she enrolled, she took every opportunity to get connected and involved. As an active SA team member, she attended nearly every campus event. As a member of the Enactus team, she got to travel to different schools and businesses across the metroplex. Through a 2021 business pitch competition, she presented launching her own business, Yu’s Cafe, on campus.

Valuing SWAU’s unique location, a short drive from the cities of Fort Worth, Dallas and Waco, Hu and her friends made it their goal to explore at least one new place each month during college.

“From the State Fair of Texas in Dallas to Magnolia Market in Waco, through incredible trails, malls and events in between, my friends and I ate so much food and laughed at so many jokes as we made memories. I am so glad that SWAU brought us together.”

Hu notes that the Johnson County community, where SWAU is located, is itself filled with fun things to do. Fellowship, nature and hidden gems surround SWAU.

“Cliff jumping at Lake Whitney is a great way to get out and enjoy God’s nature, fellowship and have fun. Whether it’s you and a couple of friends, or a group of 20, you can never go wrong visiting Lake Whitney!”

“Each year as I meet new SWAU students, I tell them to experience campus to the fullest and to take advantage of this incredible community that SWAU is located in,” shares Hu. “Getting out of your comfort zone and activating your passion through holistic adventures, on and off campus, will make SWAU memories for a lifetime!” 


Individuals seeking to learn more about the SWAU experience can explore life here and explore the surrounding communities. Additionally, everyone is invited to experience the heart of Texas for themselves by visiting the SWAU campus. Perhaps, SWAU will become your home away from home. Ask about travel assistance when scheduling your first campus visit.