From enjoying Valentine’s Day “dates” with residents, to Christmas caroling during the holiday season, Messiah College students have taken a vested interest in Messiah Lifeways, and residents have reciprocated that desire to build relationships. ’80 business administration alumnus Curtis D. Stutzman currently serves as Messiah Lifeways’ president and CEO. Before accepting this position, Stutzman worked as a sales representative for a wholesaler, a financial planner, a banker, and a church administrator. Relative to his versatile career choices, Stutzman says: “God can use your unique experiences in life in ways you couldn’t have imagined.”
As the CEO of Messiah Lifeways, Stutzman and his team are currently focusing on three aspects of growing Messiah Lifeways, including strengthening the core business/ministry on their Messiah Village and Mount Joy Country Homes campuses, growing their community-based services to address the needs of those "aging in place" in their homes in the broader community, and working to improve Messiah Lifeways’ team member engagement to match the organizational values. All of those activities help support the organization’s mission as a ministry “that responsibly enhances the lives of older adults with Christ-like love.”
That responsibility to show the love of Christ to everyone stemmed from the attitude Stutzman formed during his time at Messiah College, where he had the opportunity to marry his undergraduate education with a Christian/biblical perspective. He says, “I see the amalgamation of my experiences at Messiah as having the greatest effect in my growth from beginning to end there.”
Stutzman values the lasting relationships he formed during his time at Messiah College; he met his wife during his time at Messiah, and keeps in regular contact with several friends—twenty-five years after graduation. He says, “It seems like we can pick up in our relationship where we left off, no matter how long between contacts. It’s been fun being in each other’s weddings, and now in attending the weddings of each other’s children.”
Because he enjoyed such a positive experience at Messiah College as a business administration major, Stutzman advocates choosing said major. He says, “If you’re not certain about what you want to do, but want to make sure you’ll have some options available for work when you graduate, consider business administration as a major…this major allows for numerous concentrations to add as your goals begin to develop.” According to Stutzman, taking courses such as Child Development and Marriage and Family also helped him succeed in life, as he and his wife drew from principles they learned in these courses as they raised their family.
Above all, Stutzman emphasizes the important of following God’s plan for your life, and “remaining flexible, and choosing a college that fits who you are as a person, supports your goals for the future, and feels right when you visit.”