From the Students: Christian University at Gardner-Webb
Gardner-Webb's Christian foundation is important to students
in unique ways. Hear from current students about what it means to them.
Jonathon Rhyne, Freshman Marketing/Journalism
“I know that on my bad days, I am loved by a bunch of people who I don’t even know… Here, people do care about you, and they don’t even have to know your name.” (More)
Hannah Ray, Sophomore English
“Everything falls under that umbrella of 'Why are we doing this?' and a Christian University has the responsibility to do it because they’re trying to glorify God in all that they’re doing.” (More)
Jeremiah Hamby, Senior Psychology
“It’s more than going to Church on Sunday; it’s living in a community of Christian believers in everyday life and being intentional, being vulnerable with them, and the atmosphere at Gardner-Webb has really shown me that…” (More)
Caitlyn Brotherton, Senior ASL
“That’s what college is all about: figuring out what you want to do and who you want to be, and when everyone around you is pointing you towards Christ, it’s a lot easier to be focused on him.” (More)
Kyeonta “Keon” Williams Jr.
Kyeonta Williams Jr. (’14) economics/finance major, French minor
“Gardner-Webb gave me the opportunity to become involved with Career Athletes (Athlete Network) during my freshman year, which led to obtaining a Top 10 Internship with Northwestern Mutual. The experience of playing collegiate football helped fuel a sense of leadership and team spirit, which is vital in corporate America. The curriculum of the Godbold School of Business helped mold me into a responsible professional.”
Football brought Kyeonta “Keon” Williams Jr. (’14) to Gardner-Webb in 2010 for a visit, but a business professor convinced him to stay.
“I was offered a full-scholarship to be a student-athlete,” the Runnin’ Bulldogs cornerback recalled. “I chose to attend Gardner-Webb shortly after hearing Dr. Anthony Negbenebor’s presentation during my official visit. Negbenebor (dean emeritus and professor of economics and international business in Godbold School of Business) discussed how the institution intertwines faith and academics, which my family and I felt was a competitive advantage.”
Once he began his studies at GWU, Williams found Negebenebor’s statements to be true. Along with playing football, he learned business concepts crucial to his career and participated in a variety of campus organizations, including the Student Government Association, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Students in Free Enterprise (Enactus) and French Club.
“Gardner-Webb gave me the opportunity to become involved with Career Athletes (Athlete Network) during my freshman year, which led to obtaining a Top 10 Internship with Northwestern Mutual,” Williams offered. “The experience of playing collegiate football helped fuel a sense of leadership and team spirit, which is vital in corporate America. The curriculum of the Godbold School of Business helped mold me into a responsible professional. Most importantly, my experience at the Godbold School of Business gave me a sense of moral discernment and ethical awareness that is needed for a career in an industry plagued by conflicts of interest.”
He was impressed with the caliber of the GWU faculty and their constant pursuit of knowledge. Negbenebor stood out because of his teaching style.
“He went above and beyond my expectations. He integrated the three main cognitive learning styles into our course study which helped me tremendously: visual, auditory, and kinesthetic,” Williams observed. “As a result, I was able to learn and retain complex theories and concepts that are beneficial for me today. For instance, Dr. Negbenebor would ask ‘What is economics?’ at the beginning of every lecture, and the class would answer ‘Economics is the study of how you and I allocate scarce resources given certain restrictions to maximize our wants and needs.’”
In his job as an investment adviser representative, Williams creates and implements investment strategies for retail investors. He also had an opportunity to attend the China Europe International Business School’s (CEIBS) 2015 Shanghai boot camp, where nearly 70 participants from around the world heard lectures from well-known professors, visited the offices of multinational companies and engaged in various career-development activities. During his experience in China and since receiving his degree, he has come to appreciate the value of having the faculty of the Godbold School of Business share their real-world experiences.
“The faculty is accessible and hands-on with their approach given the University’s focused class size. It is important for an individual to get to know the story of who’s leading their journey through higher education,” Williams suggested. “Many of our faculty have served in executive roles and conducted business efforts around the world. Globalization is the prime focus of business now, so it is important to have insight pertaining to other parts of the world. The diversity within the faculty gives students the opportunity to collect first-hand accounts about the nature of business and the interconnectedness of emerging markets and Europe with the U.S.”