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What Vanguard Alumni Have to Say:

Meet Vanguards from the 2020-2021 Cohort

vanguard kyra smiling with other vanguards
Kyra Johnson '21

What is your favorite part about living in the Northwoods?

The nature and being able to live in this community! You’re always on the go, but in the end, it’s nice to always have someone that has your back.

Read the thoughts, ideas, and reflections on their year at HoneyRock from our Vanguards, below.

Lisa Heegaard, Vanguard '17, captured reflections and random moments from a few of our Vanguards as they reflected on their experience. Enjoy reading these interviews that share a peek into Vanguard!

vanguard adam hiking
Adam Kepke '17

Taking a break from school gave me the space I needed to decide to actually return to school when I didn’t think it was for me. I was able to take an intermission to just figure out if I wanted to go back and what I wanted to study. Since going back to college, I’ve discovered that once you know what you want to study, school becomes a lot easier and a lot more purposeful.


chan smiles at the camera
Chan Woo '18

The program is very intentional. With everything they do here – like the solos I talked about before – those helped with reflecting on where I’m coming from and where I want to go. The small and intentional community helped keep me accountable.

The program is just really well-crafted so that you’re put in a lot of different experiences. I mean, of course, it’s all up to you whether you want to take that step and be willing to improve and change. But the program definitely provides chances for you to see, reflect, and grow.

vanguard sarah lambert serving oranges and smiling
Sarah Lambert '16

What brought you to Vanguard?

...I had a really hard high school experience. Every week I went to youth group and was just like, I wish I could talk with someone about how I feel. For two years. I never felt like I was able to talk about it. So I thought, well, if I go and live in the woods for a year I’ll probably have to talk about it.

The idea of having a year that was focused on helping me understand what I was going through…it felt like it was all I wanted. It felt like a way to set myself up to work through a few things.

vanguard allie giving a big smile
Allie Lambert '19

I wanted to know what I believe in. I grew up going to church and everything. But you know, in high school I was like, I don’t know what I really believe. I had a lot of doubts. I didn’t know if I wanted to continue my Christian faith outside of my routine at home. I knew that I wasn’t fully involved with it.

I knew that I didn’t really have a relationship with God. If I went to college and wasn’t 100% sure of my faith, I knew that I would just drop it. It was important for me to figure it out.


vanguard brian welding
Brian Keller '19

it was exactly what I needed. I think Vanguard taught me how to care. For myself and for others. I was at a point where I didn’t really care about myself anymore. But the way it’s designed…you learn to love people you might not like. For most of my life, I had avoided that. It was like, if I didn’t like someone I wasn’t going to spend time with them. Therefore, I never learned how to love people who weren’t similar to me. But Vanguard forces you to be in community and when you’re that close, you begin to change.


vanguard chan eats at a cookout

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