Homecoming King: Jonathan Juarez
Jonathan Juarez is a Qdoba-loving extrovert from Salina, Texas majoring in youth and family ministry. Juarez was announced as Oklahoma Christian’s 2016 Homecoming King yesterday afternoon.
Juarez was attending a funeral of a friend’s family member and was unable to attend the homecoming ceremony.
“Earlier this week, once I knew when the funeral was going to be, I decided to go,” Juarez said. “I wanted to be there for the family. I let the Homecoming executives know and they asked if there was anyone that wanted to fill in for me and I couldn’t really think of anybody at first.”
Juarez said one of his friends suggested letting Tate Plumb walk in his place, and Juarez couldn’t think of a better stand-in.
“Tate is one of those kids whose laughter and smile is very influential,” Juarez said. “I called his father, Brian, the youth minister at Memorial, and asked if Tate would fill in for me and Tate was more than happy to do so, which speaks volumes to who he is.”
Juarez said he was driving while the Homecoming ceremony was taking place, so he found about winning homecoming king through a call from Tate.
“Tate told me we won and I responded, ‘That’s awesome, we did it,’” Juarez said. “He kept telling me ‘No, you won,’ but I could not have done it without him. It was special to get to share that with Tate. It’s a great memory to have for when I look back on my senior year.”
Known to his peers as ‘Monk,’ Juarez serves as an assistant resident director for Wilson Hall, president of social service club Chi Lambda Phi and a youth intern at Memorial Road Church of Christ.
Juarez said his favorite part of being a student at Oklahoma Christian is the close bond between professors and students.
“We always joke about OC being home but to me OC is family,” Juarez said. “The professors are intentional in getting to know their students in a one-on-one basis. I’ve really enjoyed that aspect of this university.”
Juarez said before deciding to attend Oklahoma Christian he needed to make a choice of whether he wanted to go into ministry or become a teacher.
“One of my best friends and fellow classmates, Brooks Stephenson, mentioned he was looking at Oklahoma Christian and I decided to visit with him,” Juarez said. “Immediately I fell in love with the place and I was convinced this was just where I needed to be.”
Juarez said both Dudley Chancey and Jeff McMillon have served as mentors to him during his time at Oklahoma Christian.
“Dudley is my advisor and professor of a lot of my youth ministry classes,” Juarez said. “He’s been great. Every week since my sophomore year we’ve met to shared our lives and pray together.”
Juarez said McMillon has been influential on his spiritual walk, and he knows he can rely on him to help with decision-making because of his wisdom and insight.
Juarez said his advice to students is to be very intentional about getting to really know people.
“In every situation, in everything you do, whether it’s with clubs or in your classes, take the time to get to know the people around you,” Juarez said. “Ask their names and get to know their stories.”
Juarez said there are many events he has enjoyed in his time at Oklahoma Christian but his favorite three are Earn Your Wings, Homecoming and Spring Sing.
“I’ve loved being a part of these events, I have a lot of fond memories from them,” Juarez said. “You share laughter, jokes and good memories. Any activity where you are able to connect with other people those have been the ones that stand out to me.”
Juarez said he hopes he has impacted Oklahoma Christian by spreading joy in the lives of others.
“My passion is spending time and connecting with people, specifically people who are at a very crucial time in their lives,” Juarez said. “For me, I really enjoy getting to hang out and have conversations. I’m very extroverted, so I love growing in relationships with people.”
Homecoming Queen: Abby deSteiguer
Abby deSteiguer is a left-handed, cat-loving, psychology major with a minor in communication studies from Edmond, OK.
deSteiguer is a member of the social service club Gamma Rho, secretary of Psi Chi and president of Alpha Chi. She is also assisting U!Shine with its Healthy Brain, Healthy Mind lecture program. Yesterday, deSteiguer added another title to her repertoire when she won Oklahoma Christian University’s 2016 Homecoming Queen.
Outside of school, deSteiguer said she loves to travel and experience different cultures. This led her to study abroad her sophomore year and go on a mission trip this past summer to Ghana with Memorial Road Church of Christ.
Beyond traveling, deSteiguer enjoys playing ping-pong and guitar, as well as reading and spending time with her family and friends.
“The people are my favorite thing about OC,” deSteiguer said. “The great friendships and relationships I’ve made here I know are going to last me a lifetime.”
Before attending Oklahoma Christian University, deSteiguer said she looked at other colleges but growing up around Oklahoma Christian, she knew she would feel like she was missing out if she decided not to attend.
“I know how great this university is,” deSteiguer said. “I wanted it to be a part of my story.”
deSteiguer said her advice to the student body is to make the most of their college experience by taking every opportunity to meet as many people as possible.
One of the most influential people deSteiguer said she has met on campus is Dean of Spiritual Life Jeff McMillon.
“He’s been like a mentor and has really invested in me,” deSteiguer said. “I can call him a good friend and go to him when I need advice, knowing he’s going to know the right thing to say.”
deSteiguer said being a part of a social service club helped her get involved, and studying abroad helped instill in her the desire to see the world. She also said her favorite Bible verses are Hebrews 11:1 and Romans 8:38-39.
“Hebrews 11:1 is important to me because of the word ‘hope,’” deSteiguer said. “Without hope what do we have? That’s what my faith is about, placing my hope that there is something greater at the end of this life. Romans 8:38-39 is a favorite because it is so powerful and I truly believe love conquers all.”
Outside of Bible verses, deSteiguer said she finds guidance in the people she surrounds herself with.
“The people who have had the greatest impact on my time at Oklahoma Christian are my parents and friends,” deSteiguer said. “My parents lead by example and show me what it means to be a good person and care about others. My friends who have really been there for me loved me and made me laugh. Family and friends really shaped me, because they also make life better when it’s hard.”
deSteiguer said she feels honored to represent the university as homecoming queen.
“I hope they see me as compassionate and loving,” deSteiguer said. “That is important to me. That’s what I want people to see me as.”