Here at Southeastern University’s Ohio Network Campus, we are pleased to announce our first master’s degree graduate! Alma Lovins just finished her Master of Arts in Ministerial Leadership (MAML) here with us at SEU Ohio, and in honor of her, we took some time in our weekly chapel to acknowledge her. With that, I got the chance to talk with Alma and ask her a few questions.

Me: Tell me about your family.

Alma: My husband’s name is Josh and we have been married for 11 years. I’m his high school sweetheart. We have two children together; Joshua-Brayden is eight years old and Brya Evie is six years old. Both of our kiddos are miracle babies; despite each of them having special needs, they are healthy and we are thankful for them.

M: What do you currently do?

A: I am currently a Realtor with Coldwell Banker King Thompson. I am also a licensed social worker in the state of Ohio. I serve in my local church, Faith City Church, and volunteer in the community when I am able to. I actively advocate for kids with special needs; those with cerebral palsy and learning differences.

M: What does your future look like to you?

A: My future looks full. My family is my first ministry, outside of God, and they keep me busy. I do plan to go back to school for my doctoral degree to teach and write books. Leadership development is where my heart is. My future, in and out of the body of Christ, is filled with vision to make disciples and build leaders, starting with my family first.

M: What was the biggest thing you’ve learned through the MAML program about yourself and God’s plan for you?

A: Throughout the entire year program, I learned more about myself than anything. Each assignment I completed peeled back a new layer to expose the elements that made up my root system. It was great to have my professors right there to help me as the Holy Spirit extracted and replanted. The classes challenged me and exposed the areas in my heart that needed special attention. Behind my determination to complete the program, I discovered a girl in relentless pursuit to be known by her Father and to live in his image. In this, I discovered my purpose and God’s plan for me. My purpose is to receive and experience God’s love. His plan is for me to know him. Leadership starts from the inside and works its way out. Serving outweighs titles and talents. This program provided a paradigm shift in what I thought leadership was.  My vision and plans must align with his Word so that I am positioned properly to lead his people. The MAML program helped reposition me to align with Christ’s leadership model and the Holy Spirit quickly adjusted me to correctly serve those I lead. I rediscovered the glory in making ministry to God top priority and the people God allows me to lead will benefit from the shift, as we head in the right direction. I am forever grateful for my professors who have seen my heart beyond a computer screen, took notice, and seized the opportunity to polish a hidden gem in the kingdom.

M: What drew you to SEU Ohio Online for your masters?

A: God told me it was time to go back to school. I asked Him what for, and He said leadership. I had spoken to Mary Harmison about a year before I applied and God reminded me of her. So I Googled the school and everything that was offered in the program was everything that was in my heart.

M: What’s next for you?

A: Serving at my local church. There is blessing in that, and God wants me to be formed in that family.

Congratulations, Alma! All of us here at SEU Ohio are so proud of you and cannot wait to see where God takes you!

Abigail Stout, SEU Ohio Student Leader