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EU Alumni Perspective: Julie (Graham) Higgins

Name: Julie (Graham) Higgins

Graduation Year: 1985

Major: Business Education

Current Position: Partner, Higgins Business Consulting

City and State: Ozark, MO

 

Tell us about your career and what you do now.

I love entrepreneurship. By age 40, I had started and sold 3 businesses in which locals referred to me a serial entrepreneur. God totally blessed me with the ability to strategize, innovate, build teams and launch businesses. He also put amazing mentors in my path who shared their wisdom. I’m so grateful! My last venture was starting the nonprofit, I Pour Life, a social development organization that focuses on foster youth development and marginalized families in Ethiopia. For 12 years I led I Pour Life gaining state and National recognition. In August 2021, I passed the torch on to a new leader. While enjoying semi-retirement, I received a call asking if I would step back in business. This led to my most recent business, Higgins Business Consulting. My partner and I, put teams of experts together to provide solutions for small to mid-size companies. We also provide professional leadership coaching to executives and contract with the government.

 

What is your favorite memory from Evangel?

There are too many favorites to list. My deepest friendships came from Evangel, and these were cultivated at the cafeteria, spiritual emphasis week, chapel, fall and spring harvest parties, dorm/floor parties and much more.

 

How did Evangel help you identify/develop your calling?

Evangel provided the foundation I needed to step into a bolder relationship with Christ. The professors and staff were great mentors to me and invested in my life in an insurmountable way. Let’s just say I was in President Spences office quite a bit. It was at Evangel that I gained the confidence and boldness to believe in my calling as a business owner and entrepreneur.

 

How did your experience at Evangel prepare you for life after graduation?

Not only were the professors seasoned with careers, they too had a heart for teaching. They shared in the classroom their knowledge and experience of being in the workforce. Their stories and experience inspired me as well as understanding how to live a life for Christ in the workplace.

 

What advice would you give a current student preparing for the workforce?

Take time with your professors and learn from their work experience. Theory is good but practical experience is key. Also, learn to verbally communicate, this will be the key to your professional growth and success.

 

What would you look for if you were in a position to hire new graduates from Evangel?

At I Pour Life, I was blessed with many Evangel interns and hired several upon their graduation. I’d look for individuals who are willing to work hard, have a teachable/learning spirit, and adaptable. Whatever I’m doing is at a pretty fast pace, so they have to be willing to keep up.