A place to belong

When Quincy Livchak ’18 chose Malone, she was searching for a place to belong and she hoped a collegiate swim program would fill that need. What she actually found in the Malone community far exceeded her expectations. 

“Coach Russ Hunt is the best, and is a large part of the reason I enjoy swimming so much,” Livchak said. “He encourages us to be engaged in all aspects of Malone and recognizes that we are more than athletes. He bonds us on relationships and models support and respect both in the pool and outside of competition.” 

In fact, Livchak felt so strongly as a first-year student that swimming was her community that she initially resisted participation in her Gen 100: The College Experience course, which is part of the bigger College Experience Program for first-year students. But not for long. 

“I grew up in a university-minded household because both of my parents work in that setting,” she said, “and the longer I spent in my Gen 100 class, the more my eyes were opened to what my college experience could accomplish in my life if I allowed the process to happen.” 

Over time, Livchak found herself enjoying the class so much that she applied for (and received) a Course Assistant position in the program. 

“The class prompted me to think more broadly about the biblical purpose for community, and its impact on me made me want to support new first-year students the way I had been supported,” she said. 

Livchak, an education double-major (Early Childhood and Intervention Specialist), is already able to see where this leadership experience is preparing her for a career in education. 

“I am beginning to understand how exhausting, but meaningfully exhausting, it can be to fully invest in the lives of students, and the importance of investing myself fully in those I teach,” she said. “Malone is shaping me to understand that I’m not preparing for an 8-4 job, but why it is so critical to pray for my students at the beginning of the day and go the extra mile and help them succeed.” 

Without the help of academic scholarships, this Dean’s List scholar’s Malone experience would not be possible. 

“While scholarship opportunities were available through my high school, most of that funding only supported my first year of college,” Livchak said. “I am grateful that my academic scholarship allows me to continue at Malone because I am certain that the positive Christian influence I get from faculty and staff wouldn’t be duplicated in a state school environment.”