“Southwestern Adventist University has a lot going for it,” says Stephanie Rudisaile Wilczynski, ’14. “But one of the best parts, in my opinion, is the professors.”
A graduate of SWAU’s English program, Wilczynski believes that the faculty and staff at the University “genuinely care for your well-being. I could always go to Dr. [Judy] Laue and Dr. [Andrew] Woolley when I had questions over anything English-related, career-related, or anything else.”
Wilczynski worked at KJRN for five years, where Mike and Wanda Agee “were basically surrogate parents.” In addition, she was in University Singers led by Jonathan Wall for four years, which she says helped her shape a lot of close friendships in college. One of those friendships was with Jonathan Wilczynski, ’14, which she married a week after graduation, officiated by Pastor Russ Laughlin.
After graduation, she taught at South Texas Christian Academy for two years. She and Jonny currently live in Berrien Springs, Michigan where she recently completed her M.A. in English and she started a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction in Fall, 2018. In her spare time, she’s collaborated with another SWAU graduate, Devin Anivatarte, to write and publish a Christian allegorical book series entitled The Shepherds of Oldaem. The first three books have been published and the fourth is currently being edited.
Today she works as an adjunct professor for the Andrews University Department of English as well as an instructional facilitator at Griggs University, where she helps build online courses for higher education.
Since graduation, Jonny and Stephanie have had to move three times in four years. “After living in North Texas for so long, it has been a challenge to pack up, go to new places, and make new friends,” Wilczynski says. “After some practice, we’re getting better at it now!”
Wilczynski is happy that Southwestern helped her prepare for life after graduation by providing a framework of lifelong friends.
“Wherever we’ve gone,” she says, “there is always someone in the area that we got to know in college, or someone who has a connection to a staff member or a former student of SWAU.”