Graceland Spotlights News

Graceland University alumna Marlee Quirarte ‘15 has been making her goals and aspirations come to life in the city of dreams. Originally from Independence, Missouri, Quirarte is now living in L.A., and as a student at Graceland, she spent a lot of time performing under the stage lights as a film and theatre major. It was through these experiences, she says, that she gained necessary confidence and continues to grow as a performer and artist.

Griff Cady - Student Success

November 11, 2016

The Graceland connections are valuable! Griff Cady ’17 landed a great internship for the summer in San Diego, California, because of the Graceland network of friends.

The Drive to Succeed

November 7, 2016


So he’s a numbers guy who likes people – a really good combination.

It was a really good experience to learn more about drug discovery and to learn about scientists who are working in current, relevant fields; to learn things that no one else knows about yet.

...he realized he was just as prepared and was thankful for Graceland’s solid science program.

Jenna Cox - Student Success

November 4, 2016

For my entire life, all I have wanted to do is work alongside animals. Caring for them fills my heart to the brim.

Sarimar Gascot ’17 is prepared for the disaster.

He is preparing to change the world.

Leah Koch - Student Success

November 4, 2016

Leah knows firsthand what a difference good teachers can make in the lives of their students.

Ashley Edwards '05

February 16, 2016

Ashley is a former HIV/Maternal Health Case Manager, now a traveling photographer who is working toward medical school to become an infectious disease specialist.

Amber Kunzweiler '10

February 3, 2016

English instructor, South Harrison High School, Bethany, MO

"I learned marketing isn’t just about selling, it’s about nurturing clients ..."

"It has been an eye-opening experience not only for a design student but for a longtime community member."

Volunteer work in hospitals in 11 countries in 11 months changed her life.

Darcy Volz - Student Success

September 23, 2015

“... seeing scientists working together was really inspiring”

Oscar Chang - Student Success

September 23, 2015

“I learned a lot of real-life applications and problem solving.”

We followed up with Marissa and learned she's been experiencing success in her new career as a paid actress, and still credits Graceland for sparking the fire that began her journey.

"During my experience, I felt at home from the very beginning. The community at the company seemed very close knit and close to the 'Graceland Experience' that I have come to love."

Braden Austin '16

March 26, 2015

Braden shares, “I never really liked school until I started attending Graceland. I have thoroughly enjoyed taking Macro and Micro Economics, even though my major is theatre and I am going to see if I can minor in business or economics before I graduate. I couldn't be happier. I love it here … Graceland saved my life.”

During my internship with the Office of General Council, Community of Christ, I was able to build lasting relationships with all seven members. All members were friendly, welc...

During my junior year I obtained a summer internship at Eli Lilly and Company, an American global pharmaceutical company. I spent my time in the Musculoskeletal division where...

Mariah Kliegl '16

November 10, 2014

Through her Graceland Experience, she has found a deep passion for capturing the world in words and in film, and she found a strong support system in the Graceland faculty, who have nurtured her passion.

Stephen Moore '16

September 23, 2014

Before coming to Graceland, Stephen Moore of Scottsdale, Arizona, didn’t see himself as the best student.

Kurt Van Kuiken '14

August 25, 2014

“Every single person in the athletic training major really just wants to see students succeed."

Christa Hill '15

August 20, 2014

“The professors are really nice and you can tell that they care about you and want to have a personal relationship with you, but they also want to challenge you.”

Tabitha Gonzalez '14

July 24, 2014

"Graceland has given me the confidence to follow my dreams and continues to make a difference in my life.”

April Smith '17

July 22, 2014

“The AG program was starting to really take off and I wanted to be a part of the growing system."

Montel Evans '15

July 22, 2014

"I rave about this program to my co-workers and other aspiring teachers."

Matt Binnicker, '99

January 22, 2014

Dr. Binnicker has written over 30 peer-reviewed articles, authored 4 book chapters, serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Clinical Microbiology, and has been invited to present his research at conferences around the world.

Nathaniel Myer, '10

December 13, 2013

It is Nate's experience with Graceland's successful Enactus team that he credits for his recent success.

Marissa Roberts, '13

October 23, 2013

Marissa Roberts is a triple threat: She can sing, she can dance, and she can act. She was a star in Lamoni as a Vocal Performance major, and now, only five months after graduating from Graceland, she’s landed work as a paid extra in Los Angeles.

Sofia Jaramillo, '14

October 16, 2013

Mexico City native Sofia Jaramillo’s college of choice had to have two things: a great tennis team and the opportunity to major in Visual Communication.

Justin Pontier, '15

October 9, 2013

Justin Pontier remembers being on the Graceland campus as a nine-year-old who had already caught the acting bug.

Karima Burns, '14

October 4, 2013

Karima Burns knew she wanted to go “somewhere small” for college, but had no idea that would mean moving halfway across the country to rural Iowa.

Tatiana Davis, '13

April 26, 2013

Tatiana Davis learned long ago that life is no fairy tale, but that hasn't stopped her from seeing the world through enchanted eyes.

Sophia Ringsdorf, '13

March 4, 2013

For most people, getting braces is less than a desirable experience. There's the pain, the maintenance, the expense, the physical appearance - the list of grievances goes on.

Antonia Davidson, '14

February 26, 2013

Antonia Davidson says that she found Graceland "by accident."

Karin Blythe, '08

February 5, 2013

When Karin Blythe '08 graduated from Graceland, she left Lamoni "on a high."

Caitlyn Barbour, '14

February 4, 2013

Caitlyn Barbour '14 is far from inexperienced.

Junbin Guo, '13

February 3, 2013

Junbin Guo is just one of many international students at Graceland University.

Daniel Vogelsang, '13

February 2, 2013

Daniel Vogelsang '13 says that he has always been an explorer. And since coming to Graceland, he has indulged the trait.

Patrick Minor, '13

February 1, 2013

Patrick Minor forgot how to play piano this year.

Jennifer Abraham, '11

January 31, 2013

For many students, it can be difficult to see how their classwork will one day benefit their lives.

Sarah Balik, '12

January 30, 2013

Ever since Sarah Balik '12 was little, she knew she wanted to be a doctor. However, during winter term of her sophomore year at Graceland, she encountered a conflict that would eventually change her mind.

Nathalie Baptiste, '10

January 29, 2013

Nathalie Baptiste '10 learned a lot of things at Graceland - and not just in the classroom.

Tyler Bridge, '08

January 28, 2013

While at Graceland, Social Sciences Division Chair Dr. Brain Smith kindled his interest when he spoke about the relationship between pharmaceutical companies and doctors.

Brittany Bennett, '11

January 27, 2013

In fall of 2011 Graceland added a Human Services major to their Bachelors of Arts programs. And Brittany Bennett knew this new degree would be perfect for her.

Morgan Bradford, '12

January 26, 2013

It was an accident that got Morgan Bradford '12 interested in Residence Life.

Colleen Brian, '11

January 25, 2013

It's not every day that your best friend asks you to spend a year with them in South Korea. But when Colleen Brian '11 began the application process for the World Service Corps, she asked Sally Norton '11 to sign up with her.

Rebecca Bullock, '09

January 23, 2013

Rebecca Bullock '09 has never been someone you would consider an underachiever. At Graceland, she had two majors, History with a non-Western emphasis and International Studies.

Ryanne Carlson, '11

January 22, 2013

Ryanne Miiller '11 Carlson came to Graceland because it was a place she'd heard wonderful things about. A third generation Gracelander, her parents and both sets of her grandparents attended "the Hill".

Alex Cash, '12

January 21, 2013

If you don't know Alex Cash '12 personally, you may know his work. In fact, it may even be in the palm of your hand.

Liz Deegan, '12

January 20, 2013

Culture Shock. It's not something you'd think a New Yorker would get. But Liz Deegan '12, hailing from New York state, received an ample dose of it when she first showed up in Lamoni.

Brandon Fletcher, '11

January 19, 2013

Brandon Fletcher '11 came to Graceland because of SPECTACULAR camp. "It's that simple," he says.

Abby Hernandez, '11

January 17, 2013

Abby Hernandez '11 has two big passions - theatre and community service. And through the Lamoni community, she's been able to experience both.

Tyler Jones, '09

January 16, 2013

Ever since Tyler Jones '09 was little, he wanted to come to Graceland. He jokes that this may be the result of a little parental "brain-washing"; and if this is the case, his parents did their job well.

Brittany Longsdorf, '10

January 15, 2013

Iowa sunsets, Swarm-Inn Super Tots and Cheville House's James Bond function. These were a few of Brittany Longsdorf's favorite things.

Cleuzia Navessee, '13

January 13, 2013

Cleuzia Navessee '13 originally came to the United States from the South African country of Mozambique because she wasn't keeping up with her school work.

Matthew Nii, '11

January 11, 2013

When the time came for Matthew Nii '11 to select a graduate program, he couldn't deny that Graceland gave him a taste for the personalized education a smaller university can provide.

Trent Ranney, '12

January 9, 2013

A year ago, Trent Ranney '12 says that the only thing he knew about paint was "how to spell it." But while traveling to Nationals with the Graceland Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) team, Trent handed out his resume to the franchise College Pro Painters.

Jessi Ruckman, '11

January 7, 2013

When Jessi Ruckman '11 ran for Aponivi House President (HP) at the end of her sophomore year at Graceland, she was just hoping for the chance to lead her house and provide others with help and support.

Ryan Sheehy, '10

January 5, 2013

Ryan Sheehy's research is cutting edge, with the potential to extend lives in the future. This research focuses on a group of drugs' potential as a treatment for brain cancer.

Paige Webberley, '12

January 4, 2013

Paige Webberley '12 says that Graceland has helped her step outside of her comfort zone and gain confidence.

Justin Wallace, '12

January 3, 2013

Justin Wallace '12 calls himself "a dude just trying to make it." And as he prepares for his graduation this May, the chances for this 'dude' look pretty favorable.

Derrick White, '14

January 2, 2013

When Derrick White's Graceland professor suggested that he enter a national songwriting competition, Derrick figured that it couldn't hurt to try.

June Wiley, '13

January 1, 2013

June Wiley '13 loves elephants. Period. And her internships reflect that passion. Whether it's the work she did at Riddle's Elephant and Wildlife Sanctuary in Arkansas or her recent work at the veterinary clinic at Gladys Porter Zoo in Texas, it's obvious that June has a passion for helping animals.

Emily Rose, '12

December 4, 2012

Emily Rose '12 isn't one for filling out applications. In high school, Emily knew exactly where she wanted to go to college. Graceland was the only university she troubled herself to apply to.

Julia Wilkerson, '12

December 3, 2012

When the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) club traveled to a national supercomputing conference in New Orleans, Julia Wilkerson '12 passed out her resume to a few potential employers