Fate.

I have lived in four different cities in the past year: Marquette, MI; Beulah, MI; Vermillion, SD; and Gunnison, CO. Each of these cities holds a piece of my heart, a large chunk of my being. I’ve been formed by each of these places. My path has led me to each of these places for different reasons – some of which were crystal clear, some I probably will never know. Nonetheless, I’m happy to call each place home.

This summer I found my path leading me to this tiny little mountain town after saying “I am done with small town living” for the entirety of the past year. I happened upon this magical place after my dear friend Mandi suggested I apply for an internship here. Well the rest is history. Before I knew it I was in Gunnison.

And I couldn’t be happier.

I’ve learned more in two short months than I have in a very long time. I’ve made some amazing friends. I have found supporters, leaders, mentors, and guides. I’ve landed a full time professional job – my first full time professional job.

I am just 23 years old. I’m halfway through my masters program. I’ve had this internship for two months. And look at where I am. So much has come from being in this tiny little mountain town. So many doors have opened.

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staff golf cart photo shoots

I’ve always been a believer in “everything happens for a reason” and “where you’re meant to be is where you’ll end up” but it’s never rang more true for me than today.

A colleague and I had a conversation this evening about my fit here at Western and how my internship this summer was meant to be. I was supposed to come to Gunnison and am supposed to be working for Residence Life and Conference Services. It was my fate, a God sign, an alignment of the stars…my destiny. I have a specific purpose for being here. Everything happens for a reason, and being here is meant to be.

So whether you believe in fate, destiny, alignment of stars, or whatever…I believe I’m absolutely without a doubt meant to be where I’m at now.

I’m meant to be serving the Western campus, Gunnison community, and myself. I know that there is work to be done and waves to be made here, and I can feel it in my bones that I am supposed to be right where I am now – working with the people I am working with, living in this beautiful mountain town, and taking it one step at a time.

Everything happens for a reason. So, celebrate; life is fine!

-Joel

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