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Graduate Students

Rebecca Babiyre '16

M.A. TESOL and Intercultural Studies

Rebecca Babiyre“Through your enthusiasm for the integration of faith and work, you showed me what an opportunity it was for a Christian to be in any work place. My calling to follow Christ may lead me to the wilderness or to streams of fresh water, Africa or to the Middle East. Wherever it will be, I pray I will recognize the opportunities to serve and draw people to Christ's Kingdom.” 

Read a Q & A with Rebecca 

Joseph Longenecker '16

M.A. Systematic Theology

J Longenecker"Working for Opus has helped me gain a broader perspective on the contexts where my theological education could allow me to serve. I didn't really have a clear understanding of vocation or calling when I entered Opus as a graduate fellow, but I have benefited enormously from the distinction that Opus emphasizes between our primary vocation as Christians and the varied secondary vocations individuals may be called to or equipped for.”

Sarah Clark DeKoekkoek '17

M.A. Christian Formation and Ministry: Student Development

Sarah Clark DeKoekkoek"Being an Opus Fellow has broadened my perspective on classes and homework as a graduate student. Rather than seeing these as means to an end, I approach them with a greater sense of worth, knowing that, for now, my vocation is to be a student. After my Opus fellowship, I see that even "mundane" work can still be approached as a calling when we remember that loving God and loving others can (and should) occur in the ordinary, not just the extraordinary. From this perspective, preparing for meaningful work involves cultivating daily habits of faithfulness."

Sarah Roop '17

M.A. Christian Formation and Ministry: Student Development

S Roop"My experience as a Wheaton graduate student is more meaningful because of my work as an Opus Fellow. I have had the opportunity to work alongside professors and fellow students who are helping me ask valuable questions about my work. The books we read, discussions we engage in, and applications we drew out have caused me to approach my work as a graduate student with greater purpose. I am thankful for this rich opportunity. After reading Tim Keller's Every Good Endeavor, I am able to see how every vocation, even the most mundane, glorifies God when the work is done with excellence. The interdisciplinary conversations about calling, work, and rest have also broadened my perspectives and helped me ask new questions as I mentor undergraduate students."

Peter Rizzo '16

M.A. Christian Formation and Ministry

Peter Rizzo"Being an Opus fellow has given me the space to think about more expanded ideas of vocation. Typically, I think about my own personal calling, but now that thinking has expanded to encompass all students, not just those at Wheaton. My understanding has also come to include more of the interplay between economy and work. Several books I've read, one as a review and one for our fellows meetings, have explained the broader meaning of the design for work and how to value God's Word alongside the economic systems we have. I have truly enjoyed being a part of an interdisciplinary group that discusses these issues from very specific vantage points. Angles that I would never think of because of my background are brought up by other fellows and have challenged my thinking."

Allie Alayan '19

Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology

Allie Alayan"As an Opus Fellow, I have been able to spend significant time and energy considering my motivations behind pursuing a career in clinical psychology. This experience has caused me to reflect on my vocation/calling, and to ask myself hard questions. This experience has helped me to bring this idea of vocation/calling into all of my courses, and even into conversations with my professors and fellow classmates. I have been able to see how my vocation/calling doesn't simply mean my day-to-day full-time job. I have been able to see how my time as a student is part of my calling, and how my vocation includes my roles of being a daughter, a sister, a friend, and will include roles of being a wife and a mother one day. This has changed my attitude going into each class that I attend, and working on every assignment. The best part of being an Opus Fellow is the intentional conversations around vocation/calling that I have had the opportunity to learn from. I have had the chance to read several works on vocation that have drastically impacted my views on vocation and calling, and then I have had the opportunity to spend time with others wrestling with these topics. I have been changed."