Friday, May 29, 2015

Nikki Kalenges '75

Nikki KNikki Kalenges '75 is a sales associate with Howard Hanna Real Estate Services. Nikki, a specialist in residential sales, brings years of experience to the Howard Hanna team. She loves working with people and especially Malone University families and alumni.

Nikki may be reached at

Friday, May 22, 2015

Allegra Waldron '02

Allegra WaldronAllegra Waldron '02 is the owner/consultant of Maple Run Management Solutions and Practice Manager at Maple Run Veterinary Clinic LLC in Mt. Gilead.

What is your advice for working in a secular world?
I am blessed to work for a Christian boss, however I have co-workers that are not Christians. I strive for the same thing in my work place as I do in everyday life, to be the best witness for Christ that I can be. I was raised to preach the Gospel always, and if necessary use words.

What’s the greatest thing Malone prepared you for?
My road to the profession I have come to love was a rocky one. When I was at Malone I thought I had the future all figured out. How wrong I was. God had a plan for me that I never expected. I am learning to trust His plan and His timing. I got such a diverse education at Malone that my degree still prepared me for almost anything. Malone also prepared me to be able to stand as a Christian in a fallen world.

What’s the best advice you could give about life after graduation?
Remember that God is always in control. Even when you feel like things are completely out of control and you aren't sure what direction to turn, remember He knows what's next. Also, remember to trust in His timing. It is perfect. His plan and timing has always been perfect.

What skill should recent grads hone?
Networking---Learn how to use the connections you have and how to make new ones.

How did you find your first job?
Networking, before it was given the name.

Elizabeth "Liz" Barkan '03

Liz Barkan for blogLiz Barkan '03, pictured with her daughter, is the Band Director at Fairless Local Schools and Fine Arts Department Chair. Here is #MyAlumAdvice from Liz for the Class of 2015:

What is your advice for working in a secular world?
If you live according to Jesus' teaching, it is easy to be an example for Christ - even if you can't use words. I saw a quote once that said, "Your life might be the only Bible someone reads."

What’s the best advice you could give about life after graduation?
Continue to search for God in every experience, friendly encounter, and situation. Malone may offer you a "bubble of comfort" but it also offers a pillar of strength that cannot be taken away from you.

What skill should recent grads hone?
The ability to show your skills with humility, grace, and integrity.

How did you find your first job?
Through the education department, I was placed in a great student teaching assignment. While there, I utilized Career Development to hone my resume and interview skills. By the grace of God, a position opened up at the school I was student teaching and I was able to earn the position.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Corey Easterday '11 and Megan Tomkins




Corey Easterday ’11 and Megan Tomkins on September 26, 2014. Corey is the missional outreach pastor at River Tree Lake and the director of Current of Ohio. The couple lives in Canton.

Brylee Lynn Rodgers

Baby Brylee Lynn Rogers


A daughter, Brylee Lynn, to Jeremy ’07 and Kara (Keener) Rodgers ’07 on February 28, 2015. Brylee joins two big brothers, Bryson and Brexton. Jeremy and Kara teach for New Philadelphia City Schools.

Mirabel and Madelyn Scalzo

Baby Scalzo Twins

Twin daughters, Mirabel and Madelyn, to Tiffani and Joe Scalzo ’01 on March 5, 2015. Joe is a sportswriter for the Youngstown Vindicator.

Logan Crannell Naylor

Logan Naylor


A son, Logan Crannell, on February 4, 2015, to Kevin and Heather (Riggar) Naylor ’08. He joins big sister Kyla. The family lives in Simpsonville, SC.

Landon Letner

Landon Letner

A son, Landon, to Kurt '04 and Megan (Dodd) Letner '04, on September 30, 2014. Kurt is a supervisor with Swagelok. Landon joins big sisters Caelyn and Emily. The family lives in Wadsworth.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Heather Craig '08

Heather ConleyHeather Craig '08 teaches at Marlington Local Schools and is the founder and executive director of Love the Children Ministries, a nonprofit organization she started in 2004 to serve families in the city of Canton.

What is your advice for working in a secular world?
I remember being concerned about not being able to share Jesus with my students. Shortly after I had a classroom of my own I learned that every choice I make and every reaction I have shares Jesus with my students. When I build relationships with my students and fight for their hearts, Jesus is given the space to move freely in my room. Don’t be afraid to show your faith - it is a huge part of who you are and how you live!

What’s the greatest thing Malone prepared you for?
My time at Malone was incredible! I was prepared to write and execute lessons as well as step into a classroom of students. I knew what to expect for the most part and how to be flexible and handle unexpected things as well. Malone also helped me launch Love the Children Ministries. God gave the vision and Malone stood beside me and put me in contact with wonderful support people and taught me how to make it a reality.

What’s the best advice you could give about life after graduation?
Life after graduation can be hard, everyone finds careers or searches for one, and families begin to grow. Really consider the question, “What is my purpose here?” and serve God in the process of seeking the answer. In many ways graduation is a fresh start - embrace it and decide how you will impact the world for Christ, and honor the call placed on your life.

What skill should recent grads hone?
Networking and communication are incredibly important skills; finding great positions can happen from excellent networking and communication skills.

How did you find your first job?
I taught in a nearby district's remedial summer school program. The principal felt that I should be in a classroom on a full-time basis so he made phone calls to local principals on my behalf. A week later I had an interview for a part time position in Marlington Local Schools. After one year I was offered a full-time classroom position at Lexington Elementary. I not only love what I do, I love where I get to do it every day. (It is all about networking!)

Michael Oster '99

021515-oster-02Michael Oster '99 argued cases before the Ohio Supreme Court as an attorney. Now he is a judge for the Court of Common Pleas in Butler County, Ohio. Here is his #MyAlumAdvice for the Class of 2015:

During my time at Malone I learned a great many lessons, but the number one thing was always to glorify God in all things you do. I try to always remember that as I serve as a Judge and be guided by the words in Micah 6:8 "And what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God."

Andrew Berg '06, '13

Andrew BErgAndrew Berg earned two degrees at Malone - a bachelor degree in youth ministry and a master degree in theological studies. He is the Worship Leader for Rivertree Christian Church in Massillon and oversees all worship and tech leaders for the Rivertree campuses.

What's the greatest thing Malone prepared you for?
Malone gave me a solid Biblical worldview and taught me to walk closely with God - while these are the bottom of the iceberg that no one may see outwardly, they are the 90% that will determine what the tip of the iceberg (top 10%) looks like that the world will see.

What’s the best advice you could give about life after graduation?
Realize that you don’t know everything, and that it may not all be easy to start out. Be patient, seek Jesus, and give Him time to develop you and direct your path.

How did you find your first job?
I prayed for God to open and close doors. Any “open” door I applied for and pursued - in the end, He closed all but one door, and I had peace about it…so I walked in.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Dayna Yurkovich '07

Dayna Dayna Yurkovich '07 is the Event Manager at Shannon English Marketing and a member of the Malone Young Alumni Community Board of Directors.

What is your advice for working in a secular world?
Regardless of where you work, just do your best in every project. Employers will see your dedication in the small things and give you more responsibility down the road. Just live by basic biblical principles.

What’s the greatest thing Malone prepared you for?
I had amazing guidance from staff and professors about the importance of networking and building relationships. This trained me early on about professionalism and has played a huge role in where I am today.

What’s the best advice you could give about life after graduation?
Don't be so concerned about finding THE job, just find A job. Once you gain the experience, it will qualify you to find THE job later in your career. You learn more about yourself and what kind of job you really want in each experience you have.

What skill should recent grads hone?
Polish. Being polished in all aspects of professionalism in your future career will make you stand out among the rest.

How did you find your first job?
Networking and hard work is how I have come across all of my employment opportunities!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Deron Boring '01, J.D.

Deron Boring '01, J.D., is attorney at law for Deron M. Boring Law Office. He is a member of the Malone Alumni Executive Board and an adjunct professor in the School of Business.

What is your advice for working in a secular world?
"For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does." 2 Corinthians 10:3

Be confident and unwavering in your faith and your convictions.  Don’t be afraid to live your life out loud as a Christian but your actions, words, your work ethic, and how you live your life should do the majority of the talking for you. While I freely talk about my faith, there are times where it may not be appropriate. How I work, how I act, how I speak, and the love and compassion that I can show towards others is never inappropriate. It’s a tough world out there, standing up for what God commanded us to do can be costly.  Be firm in your faith!

What’s the greatest thing Malone prepared you for?
How to work hard and put my best foot forward in all I do. The faculty at Malone pushed me and made me develop critical thinking skills that have served me well in my education, my career, my teaching and my life.  The administration I worked with showed me how to be a caring, compassionate and undeniably Christian leader in the world and workplace.

What’s the best advice you could give about life after graduation?
Don’t stop learning.  Embrace new opportunities.  Stay connected to Malone.  Come back and visit for Homecoming.

What skill should recent grads hone?
Make sure you know how to communicate and write effectively.  I spend all day talking to people and/or writing. Conversations either in person or via the telephone are my only chance at making a good first impression on a new client.  The most important part of that is listening! I need to listen to my clients and then be able to talk about their concerns.  I need to speak to them with clarity, confidence, and compassion for whatever they may be facing. The ability to write clearly, concisely, and without error is just as important.  Your written work is a reflection of you, your education, your work ethic, and your attention to detail.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Alisa (Barkan) Grass '06

Alisa (Barkan) Grass '06 was promoted to Supervisor of an Intake/Assessment Unit in the Children Services Division of the Stark County Jobs and Family Services agency. Alisa has over seven years experience in child welfare and has worked in Intake/Assessment, including experience in the sexual abuse unit, and as a Wendy's Wonderful Kids Recruiter in the Adoption & Family Resources Program Area.  Alisa graduated with a masters degree in social work from the University of Akron in 2015.


Saint Wesonga '08

Saint Wesonga '08
Software Engineer, Microsoft
Seattle, Washington

In the last year of my graduate program in computer science, one of my colleagues was  intrigued by the possibility of working for Amazon. It was his dream job and he worked extremely hard to prepare for interviews with them. Driven by my own uncertainty about my career path and  my friend's unceasing exultation over the prospect of a job at Amazon, I decided to investigate software engineering jobs at Amazon. I submitted my resume and was pleasantly surprised when they reached out to me for an interview at their Seattle office. Although I hadn't interviewed much at that point, my confidence in my abilities was still high since I had performed well in school. It was a rude awakening to find that I could barely even stumble through the whole of the first technical question that came my way. Needless to say, I was (unsurprisingly) not offered a position at Amazon.

However, I learned important lessons through this experience, all of which I would like to share with you as you prepare to graduate. First, surround yourself with friends that aim high in life and that challenge you. I had not really considered what I could do with my potential until my friend started working to realize his dream of a software engineering career in the Pacific North West. His keenness to pursue his dream spurred me into thinking about which path I would take.

Second, be willing to take risks. Although I had incorrectly assessed my skill level for the interviews, I was still a bit nervous about the non-technical aspects of the interview with Amazon. However, I still proceeded to sign up for it and although I did not receive a job offer after the interview, I had learned a lot about the interview process and about how unprepared I was because I took the risk of pursuing it. This leads me to the third point: never assume that you do not need to prepare for tasks you feel confident about. It might have been a while since you have exercised the skill in question, or you may be required to apply it in a new, unique, or unexpected way. It cannot hurt you to brush up on your skills.

A few months after my experience of interviewing at Amazon, I submitted my resume at a Microsoft recruiting event and was glad to receive an invitation to interview with them. Fortunately, I had prepared myself for these interviews since my experience at Amazon had informed me about how much more preparation I needed. I subsequently received a job offer from Microsoft and I thank God that He allowed me to learn from my earlier failure. So the fourth point to you would be to learn from your mistakes and not let them define who you are or hold you back.

As you graduate and head out into the world, it is important to realize that learning is a life-long undertaking and that you are beginning a new phase of this journey of learning. With this in mind, one of the most important reminders as you set out is that our lives are about Christ's Kingdom first. He instructs us to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and that all other things shall be given unto us. This tenet of our faith should be a steady guide, a north-star, as you navigate the oceans of life. When deciding which job offer to accept for those that receive multiple, remember Christ's Kingdom and seek His glory in your decision. When waiting patiently for an offer of employment that does not seem to be materializing, remember that Christ's kingdom is about more than just our careers and how epic they could be. When contemplating switching careers later in life, remember Christ's kingdom first.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Ty Billie '14

Ty Billie '14 graduated with a bachelor's degree in business administration with a minor in finance. He is a graduate student at Malone studying to earn an MBA.

Due to a red-shirt freshman year and an injury shortened junior year, Ty has 2 seasons of (football) eligibility left and looks forward to participating in the sport he's grown to love.

Ty also works as an intern at Northwestern Mutual and hopes to continue his career as a certified financial planner.

"Malone is a special place where like-minded people can share their faith and learn from professors who care. Should you have interest, concern, or questions about your financial situation please don't hesitate to call - I am here to help."