Deep and Wide

From the Spring 2010 issue of Relationships magazine.

When Jordan Anderson enrolled at Alabama's Auburn University in the fall of 2006, he dove in head first to three substantial time commitments. Without sacrificing the integrity of his studies in biomedical science, he also jumped into a full schedule of swim team practices and meets along with Auburn Young Life's Quest leadership training. Learning how to balance his time and energy, Anderson began to see how his interests were — and are — braided together. "Swimming is this bigger picture of things that I'm learning. It's a journey," he said. "In ministry, it's kind of the same. You meet all these neat kids. Sometimes it's kind of grueling, because you don't know what to say, you don't know how to deal with their problems, you don't think you're cut out for it. But then you realize that you're learning through it, through all the relationships that you make."

So, as a Young Life leader he poured into kids during his sophomore and junior years, fostering friendships that he still maintains. "The mark of someone who wants to grow, mature and be their own person," he said, "is someone who takes information from people who are more mature, more experienced and older than they are."

Heeding his own advice, under the guidance of one of his academic advisors, Anderson applied for a prestigious national scholarship before the fall of his final year at Auburn and was elected as one of just 32 National Rhodes Scholars.

In September 2010, he will leave the United States for the first time, to pursue a master's degree in Health Science at the University of Oxford in England. He hopes to equip himself with an education that will allow him to provide medical aid to people in developing nations.

Anderson is a multi-threat, demonstrating the academic, extracurricular, relational and leadership skills that made him a strong candidate for the Rhodes Scholarship this year. His commitment to his studies and sports only complement his commitment to Young Life — to knowing and loving kids, sharing with them the deep and wide love of Christ.