Exploring Issues Of Faith And Culture
JODY HASSETT SANCHEZ, a TCA student in the early 70’s and graduate of Smith College, is quick to attribute the solid grounding she received while at Trinity as instrumental in her ability to view current events through the lens of the past in a way that advances discussion on a particular topic. She relied on this approach throughout her many years as a news producer at CNN and thenat ABC World News Tonight. Jody currently serves as president of a documentary and long-form production company that explores issues of faith and culture.
“Having the assurance that we are loved by a God who is not the author of confusion but of peace has guided me through conflict zones and heartbreaking interviews with the victims of slavery and other brutalities.” This was evident in her production of SOLD: Fighting the New Global Slave Trade, a documentary filmed in India, Pakistan, and West Africa about people of faith on the front lines of the fight against twenty-first century slavery – a multi-billion dollar business.
Inspired To Seek Her Full Potential
TEHILLAH ESKELUND, CLASS OF 2012, is grateful to Trinity for her strong Christian foundation and inspiration to diligently seek her full potential. “The TCA environment certainly empowered me in my Christian worldview. Not only was faith discussed freely, it was also demonstrated by the school leadership and other students. My friends always pushed me to want more of God. We prayed together inside and outside of school and constantly talked about Jesus as if He were the fourth member of our little band of friends. Even when my faith was challenged, I learned the valuable skill of standing up for what I believe in.”
TCA staff also taught Tehillah to never doubt her potential. “If I had a dream, they never squelched it, no matter how impossible it seemed. They pushed me to the limits of my ability and then told me I could do even more. They believed in me, prayed for me, worked with me, and encouraged me... helping me understand the importance of hope, diligence, and faith.” Tehillah graduated from Trinity as Valedictorian. As a result of the encouragement she received at Trinity, Tehillah graduated in 2016 from Nyack College as one of two Valedictorians with a degree in Psychology. Pursuing further pre-med and medical schooling, Tehillah was just accepted as 1 of 13 in Tuft University's Post Baccalaureate Pre-Med Program.
Breaking Out Of A Box
RECENT TCA GRAD, GARRETT BISHOP (2014), fell victim to malicious and relentless bullying prior to transferring to Trinity. “Bullying leaves mental scars that can rob a person of hope. It’s like living in a box that is sealed shut with absolutely no hope of ever being able to show one’s full potential. That’s exactly how I felt before I walked through the doors at Trinity. The staff and students welcomed me with open arms and clearly demonstrated the love of Christ. In no time at all, I looked forward to going to school each morning.”
Garrett’s grandmother witnessed a remarkable transformation in Garrett during his first year at TCA. She worked two jobs to ensure that he would be able to continue at TCA year after year. Sadly, during Garrett’s senior year, his grandmother died unexpectedly. Christ, working through the hearts and hands of faculty, staff, parents, and fellow students, ensured that finances would not be an obstacle to seeing Garrett through to graduation.
Garrett is currently finishing his junior year at Eastern Nazarene College and is pursuing a major in Crime, Law, and Justice with a minor in Social Wellness. “My goal is to someday invest in others the same way my grandmother and Trinity invested in me. I want to help others realize their full potential.”
Experiencing God’s Love
BEN LANE, A 2011 TCA GRADUATE, transferred to the school in 8th grade and was amazed by the stark difference in environment from his previous school. “I thought I knew what it meant to be a Christian, but I quickly discovered that it is so much more than just going to church. Instead, it is having a personal relationship with the Lord. From the day I walked through Trinity’s doors, my faith grew... because of the people around me – teachers, staff members, and other students. It truly felt like a family. This fostered a deep trust, and I felt very comfortable talking to them about deep personal issues. In turn, they provided solid biblical advice.”
Prior to Ben’s senior year, tough times struck his family and money was scarce. Continuing at TCA was so important to Ben that he worked two jobs that summer to earn tuition money. By September, though, he fell short of the sum needed. TCA staff heard about his predicament, and three days before school started he was informed that financial aid funds had been awarded to cover the difference.
Experiencing God’s love at TCA has made all the difference in the world to Ben. Though his faith was challenged during his college years at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, Ben remained steadfast in his relationship with Christ. “TCA taught me that I had a hope and future from God no matter what the world might throw at me.” Ben is currently employed by the Port of New Bedford.
A Realigned Path
“I was immediately immersed in an environment of love and grace – grace that accepted me as I was but didn’t let me stay that way. I gained new friends and learned the value of being in a community.”
In the process, Kyle applied himself academically. He did not shy away from textbooks regarded as collegiate level reading. Instead, he tackled the material and absorbed the content. “What surprised me most coming to college was the remarkable advantage my TCA education gave me over my peers. I was able to engage in discussions that my college professors thought would rock my faith to the core... but my faith remained intact.”
Kyle graduated from Gordon-Conwell in 2016 and was honored with several distinctions. He graduated Summa cum Laude for his MA in Counseling. Kyle was also honored with two preaching awards at honors convocation. One of these awards was the largest scholarship given by the school! With the award, Kyle Lincoln plans to go this fall to the University of Edinburgh in Scotland to research the psychology of preaching. Both Kyle and his wife are looking forward to this next step of his journey!
Identifying God-Given Gifts
“My thirst for knowledge was satisfied at TCA, but I graduated 8th grade with more than just a transcript. Through my experience there, I grasped the importance of pairing a top-notch education with a solid Christian foundation. While studies are important, it was clear that a strong relationship with God was pivotal to clearly identifying my gifts and ultimately putting them to work in the world.”
It comes as no surprise to discover that Adrienne seems to be doing just that. During her years at TCA, she discovered her love for languages, specifically French. Once identified, she has been hard at work to equip herself to one day become a university French professor. She received her MA in French from Boston College and began her PhD studies in French at the University of Connecticut in 2014.