Centennial Class Profiles
Hometown: Emmaus, Pa.
Campus Activities: Residence Life, member of the Messiah College Collaboratory for Strategic Partnerships and Applied Research
As an active member of the Messiah College engineering department, Andy Derr has kept himself busy with a variety of experiences during his time at Messiah. He joined the Collaboratory as a first-year student, working on a biodiesel system to take to the Democratic Republic of Congo. During the summer of his junior year, Derr traveled to the Congo to conduct research. He also has had the opportunity to work in a professional lab as part of the engineering department’s Integrated Project Curriculum.
Derr recalls countless memorable experiences at Messiah, but his favorites have been “the unplanned ones,” he says, adding that living in a community of Christians has given him many opportunities to engage in spontaneous conversations that are unique to the Messiah College experience.
His most meaningful experience at Messiah, says Derr, has been his tenure as a resident assistant in Miller Residence and Fry Apartments, where working for two years with resident director Michael Warari and group of resident assistants “has provided numerous opportunities for our tightly knit staff to challenge each other and to grow in our Christian faith.”
With his time at Messiah quickly coming to an end, Derr says that he will most miss living in an apartment complex filled with fellow students and close friends. He hopes the class of 2010 can live up to the reputation of the past 100 years of Messiah graduates; a reputation not only of strong academics, but also of fine Christian character.
Messiah’s academic programs have challenged Derr to work hard and to set his standards high. He comments, “The education that I’ve received at Messiah College has well prepared me to take the next steps in my life intellectually, culturally, and spiritually.”
When asked what his hope is for the future of Messiah College, Derr says he just hopes future students can have the same experience he has had. He said, “The small classes and faculty members who were willing to take time out of their schedules to have conversations on an individual basis are invaluable in education.”