Alumni Success - Caleb W. Brian '08

Alumni Success - Caleb W. Brian '08

Caleb, ’08 graduated from Graceland’s Honors program with a Chemistry major and went on
to become a Senior Analytical Chemist for the multinational conglomerate corporation, 3M. 

Q: Why did you choose Graceland?
A: I struggled for a while between Michigan State and Graceland. It came down to my experience with Graceland recruiters at Community of Christ World Conference in 2004. They assured me that Graceland was a great place to get a good education. Now, living in Minnesota and working at 3M, I know it was the right choice.

Q: What “House” were you in?
A: One of my cousins strongly suggested Agape. Agape had some great upperclassmen who took us under their wing, and I was chaplain during my sophomore year. One of the horrors of living on the hall was an eating challenge where we had to eat eight ounces of horseradish sauce in only a few minutes. I finished one jar by myself while other guys backed out after only a spoonful or two. A few of the guys on the hall are still my best friends and we’ve done some traveling together.

Q: What’s the most important thing you learned at Graceland?
A: I think the most important thing I learned at Graceland was that life is meant to be lived in a community. When I traveled to Nicaragua with Outreach International and to Mississippi to help with Hurricane Katrina cleanup, as a student we learned what it meant to be a community in service. The countless hours I spent on the disc golf course after class built some fantastic friendships. Long nights in the chemistry lab or studying for exams helped me to explore difficult questions with some of the smartest people I know. Campus Ministries also provided an accepting place to explore my faith. My wife and I are looking for new ways to create these kinds of communities in the place we live now.

Q: What do you do now that you can link back to GU?
A: I came to Graceland knowing that I wanted to be a chemistry major. I am where I am today because of the guidance of Dr. Pratt and Dr. Mercer. They gave me the opportunities to explore in the lab and serve in leadership positions, which helped with summer internships and graduate school applications. These critical moments in undergraduate studies helped me land my job at 3M after graduate school.

I am a Senior Analytical Chemist for the Materials Resource Division of 3M. Our division creates many of the adhesives and other chemicals that other divisions will use in their businesses. As an analytical chemist, I use molecular spectroscopy to help organic chemists and chemical engineers within 3M understand the new materials they are creating.