Alumni Reflections by Ian Newberry (’12)

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I had the privilege of attending TC Christian from 7th-12th grade and graduated with the class of 2012. I am grateful for the opportunity to share some of my experiences and am hopeful that this will be an encouragement to current and future students.  I appreciated my time at TC Christian for many different reasons.

TC Christian Baseball 2012. Ian is at far right.

First, there was a wide variety of extra-curricular activities that were offered to students in order to help us grow as people and develop life skills outside the classroom. In my time at TC Christian, I participated in sports like baseball, basketball, and football.  It was in those athletic settings that I learned leadership and teamwork skills, skills I will use for the rest of my life.  I was also able to build long-lasting friendships through them.

Ian with Allthemore, a band he formed in high school with fellow TCCS friends, Ben Law and John Pomeroy. Allthemore toured extensively and enjoyed significant regional success.

Second, I was taught the importance of service during my time at TC Christian where I was provided with opportunities to serve in a variety of contexts. I have great memories of mission trips to New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina in 2008, and my senior class’ trip to Costa Rica in 2012.  Closer to home, as one of my acts of service for the school, I was waking up early every Thursday morning to run the soundboard for the Chapel Praise Team.  These experiences helped me to develop a heart for serving others and created in me a desire to care for those in need.

Hamming it up while out on a mission with classmates circa 2012.

Third, TC Christian placed a strong emphasis on relationships, which was very beneficial for me. The teachers displayed a clear interest not only in the academic advancement of their students, but in their personal growth as well. They were always willing to meet with students about academics, but also made learning enjoyable. I still have great memories of fiestas with Mrs. Argyle in Spanish IV and going out to breakfast with Mrs. Radtke’s Calculus class at the end of the year. Thursday chapels were also a unique time to take a break from studies and listen to a variety of biblical teaching. These were enriching times for me and they taught me to continuously seek God in the midst of the busyness of school.

Close friends to this day. Ian with school friends, Jared Olshove and Ben Law.

The most important way that TC Christian positively influenced my life was helping me to develop a Christian worldview. I learned this primarily through the Logic and ‘Understanding the Times’ classes taught by Mr. Weber and the Theology and Apologetics classes taught my Mr. Broderick. These classes taught me to really understand both the culture and the Bible , and to think critically about how they interact.  

After high school, I attended Northwestern Michigan College for two years where I completed my Undergraduate pre-requisites.  During my time there, I took a Philosophy class from an atheist professor who presented many ideas that contradicted Christianity. The foundation that TC Christian provided allowed me to analyze the material well and understand how it related to the Christian faith.

Preach it, brother!

After NMC, I decided I wanted to attend Bible college. My Christian foundation from TC Christian and my experience at NMC gave me the conviction that the Church needs to deeply know the Bible and effectively engage the culture, and I decided that I wanted to participate in that. I transferred to Cornerstone University in 2014 and graduated two years later with a degree in Biblical Studies. In the fall of 2016, I began the Master of Divinity program at Grand Rapids Theological Seminary, where I will attend for two more years.

I have had many great teachers and professors over the years and they have helped me develop a love for the study of the Bible. My desire is to share that with the Church in order to build it up and help mold it into the image of Christ. After finishing my Master of Divinity, I plan on becoming either a Teaching Pastor or a Christian Education Pastor, while also potentially pursuing further graduate work.  This spring, I will also be getting married to a wonderful young woman named Whitney.

Ian with his fiancee, Whitney.

TC Christian was a very important part of my journey and I am so grateful for my time there.  Academically, TC Christian prepared me very well for college and seminary.  TC Christian also prepared me for the next phases of life, personally and spiritually.  I am thankful for the holistic education I received there, and the way that the staff and faculty invested in their students.  I’m looking forward to passing it on.