2018 Homecoming Court
By Claire Lehman-Schletewitz
Elizabeth Mattia is a communication major with a minor in theatre. When asked how she found Grace, she replied that Grace College found her through email and she decided to visit the campus. During her visit, she wanted to blend into the campus as much as possible so that she could truly experience the way the campus felt. She went on to say that she felt right at home.
Mattia is involved in the campus improv group Back in Five, is heavily involved in Grace’s stage performances and has an intense love for music. In her everyday life, she can be found “late-night YouTube watching, sweating on the Mount Memorial stairs and hosting podcasts.”
Noah Hicks is an accounting major participating in the blended MBA (Master of Business Administration) program. After he graduates in December, Hicks plans to move back home to conclude his MBA and study for his CPA (Certified Public Exam in accounting). Following that, he plans to start full-time at a CPA firm in Macomb, Michigan.
Hicks decided to visit Grace after hearing that close friend Austin Steppey would be attending; he also wanted to attend a Christian business school. After staying in Gershom Tadesse’s room on Beta 1, Noah decided that Grace was the place for him. Hicks served as student body chaplain at Grace during the 2017-18 school year and now enjoys his roles in the Prayer in Action and HymnSing groups on campus. When he isn’t praying with a group about events on campus or singing hymns with the Grace Village residents, he enjoys playing intramural sports and attending other campus events.
Caleb Niemi is part of the blended program here at Grace, currently seeking a bachelor’s degree in marketing and his MBA. After graduating, he hopes that he will be able to work in a marketing agency or for an orthopedic company.
Niemi made the choice to come to Grace College after a visit to the campus. He was especially interested in the three-year program, Grace’s business school and the community found throughout campus. He is part of the student mentoring program on campus and works as an assistant for the library. Off campus, Niemi can be found playing in the Mission Point Worship team.
Erika Combs is double-majoring in communication and psychology, hoping to work with disadvantaged children and their families through education and community programs when she graduates.
After hearing about Grace through a college fair, Combs decided to visit and participate in the Presidential Scholarship Competition. She felt extremely welcome the entire weekend that she was on campus. “When it came time to decide where I was going to attend, a lot of little details lined up in favor of Grace,” said Combs.
Combs is a member of the Grace’s traveling drama group, Remnant, and is an RA in the Lodge this year. She has a ton of fun with the girls she lives with and loves being an active member of the Grace community.
Ellie Price has a psychology major and a minor in art. With her degree, she hopes to work as a Child Life Specialist, making hospital environments more inviting and less terrifying for children. In that role, she will explain what is going on to the children using age-appropriate vocabulary, which will allow children to continue to be children in a difficult environment.
Price found out about Grace through a girl she met on a mission trip to Brazil who was going into her freshman year at Grace. Price and her older sister both visited to the school; her older sister ended up attending. Price herself was hesitant to enroll, since following her older sister was not something that interested her as a self-proclaimed “mega-independent.” However, she did end up enrolling and, after Pre-Union and meeting fellow students, Price decided that Grace was the place for her.
Off Campus, Price is involved in a program called Erin’s House in Fort Wayne, which helps children through the process of grieving and loss in a welcoming environment. Price also recently started volunteering at the Emergency Department in Fort Wayne under the Child Life Specialists there, helping to make the children’s stays more positive. While on campus, Ellie loves cheering her roommates on during their volleyball games, editing travel videos and creating DIY products using essential oils.
Kristen Bellinger is an exercise science and pre-physical therapy major pursuing her MBA. Bellinger had wanted to be a sports chiropractor since the seventh grade; however, after working for Zimmer-Biomet this past summer, she believes that God has opened her eyes to working in the field of marketing.
Bellinger was introduced to Grace when she was a freshman in high school and one of her soccer teammates told her about it. During her visit to the school, she was recruited to play on the women’s soccer team. “Grace was not my first choice, but through the Lord completely softening my heart and humbling me in numerous ways, I have come to truly cherish this place and the people here,” said Bellinger. When she isn’t in the classroom or running around on the soccer field, Bellinger can be found doing anything and everything there is to do outdoors. When she wants to spend time inside, she loves reading and watching movies with her friends.
At the end of the Homecoming Banquet, Elizabeth Mattia and Noah Hicks were named 2018-19 Homecoming King and Queen.