By Micaiah Bushnell ‘17
The Residence Life (Rez life) staff had a couple of changes and additions over the summer. Three Resident Directors (RD) changed positions, as Katie Breitigan, Jake Brooks, and Polly Woods all took on new roles, and Director of Residence Life Michael Curtis also brought on three new RDs; Muoki Musau, Matt Vaselkiv, and Sarah J. Welch.
Breitigan went from being RD over the Road Halls to the RD of Tavilla and will also be the Campus Activities Coordinator in a position created by the Gordon College Student Association (GCSA) last year. “Katie was the interim advisor to CEC this past year and we are excited to see her in this new position while investing in Tavilla!” Curtis said in an email to the Resident Assistants (RA’s) over the summer. Breitigan will oversee CEC, GCSA, and its clubs.
Brooks is still the RD of Nyland, as all the Nylanders know, but now he also holds the position of Rec-Im Coordinator. Rec-Im allows the coordination of sports between student teams and has grown in popularity at Gordon. Curtis was positive about the outcome of Jake’s new position, and said in his email over the summer, “We are excited to see Jake continue to develop the Rec-Im program in his new role!”
Breitigan wasn’t the only one to upgrade dorms, however, as Woods moved from Evans into Chase. “We are thrilled to have Polly and her husband Adam continue their ministry with the Chase hall community,” Michael Curtis said in his email.
These are exciting new positions for Breitigan, Brooks, and Woods, but what about the new additions to Rez Life and the Gordon community?
Musau has been given the role of Ferrin and Drew (known as the Frew) RD. He is a recent graduate from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary where he earned an M.A. in Religion with a concentration in Theology and Race. Prior to that he attended George Mass University where he studied Religious Studies. When interviewed, Musau said “I am tired of reading for eight years; it’s time to do something!” Musau is more than ready for some serious community building in Ferrin and Drew. When asked about his vision he said wants to be a source of encouragement and a resource for his residents to go to.
Vaselkiv has taken the position of Evans RD and at the age of twenty-five is the youngest RD at Gordon. Vaselkiv graduated from Wheaton College (IL) with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Biblical Studies and a Minor in Political Studies. He has been serving as the Servant and Leadership Training (SALT) Coordinator as well as the Leadership Development Program Director at Camp Brookwoods before coming to Gordon. Vaselkiv has always had a passion for discipleship and while at Wheaton was searching for a place where he could mentor and do ministry. Vaselkiv said, “for a while I thought that I would be in full time pastoral ministry; then I realized that I have a love of politics and a love of institutions as well and Rez Life seemed like the best way to merge those two things.”
Welch is the new RD of the Road Halls. To her, being at Gordon is like coming home. Welch is a 2008 Graduate of Gordon College where she received a B.A. in Sociology and a Minor in Music. Welch is married to Chris Welch and they have a son, Sam. Welch will also be helping Terry Charek in developing a program around fitness and wellness. When asked about her vision for the Road Halls she answered, “I want it to be the place where everyone wants to live!” She and her RAs have adopted the name Villagers instead of Roadies, as a reminder that Welch brings a different vision to the Road Halls. Welch also noted that she wants to create a community “where people learn to see each other as God sees us,” and that it is a training ground for learning how to live in community. Welch was a 3 year RA while at Gordon through 2004-2008 and hopes that her experiences will help her to lead her current staff.
Musau, Vaselkiv, and Welch are excited to be welcomed to the Gordon community. They have a lot of exciting things to bring to the Rez Life table and are also ready to learn new things from their fellow RD’s, Director, and even the students.