be_ixf;ym_202404 d_15; ct_50

EU Alumni Perspective: Kari Earwood

Name: Kari Earwood, formerly Kari Nemeth

Graduation Year: 2001

Major: Communications Studies, emphasis on Public Relations and Advertising

Minor: Business Marketing

Current Position: Homemaker, Recording Artist

City and State: Hermitage, Missouri

 

Tell us about your career and what you do now.

I am a full-time homemaker and mother to seven sons ages 6 to 19. I spend my days cooking meals from scratch, homeschooling all of them, managing every part of my home, and managing their youth sports schedules and other events. Since everyone knows what lazy bums stay-at-home moms are, they are aptly able to surmise I had lots of extra time to write this article (thanks, Babe). Furthermore, they will know where all that time came from to work on the lyrics, music and production of my debut album, Peace of Mind; the reason for this spotlight, woot woot!

Before my life slowed to a crawl raising seven young men, I actually worked as an admissions counselor for Evangel University. If you’re reading this, graduated from EU and I helped you get in the door, tips are more than encouraged. Admittedly, having a Communications degree with an emphasis in Public Relations and Advertising taught me valuable skills to help promote our school.

What is your favorite memory from Evangel?

There is more than one! My best memories at Evangel all center around singing. I sang on many worship teams during chapel services and had the honor to be a part of the traveling group Frontline. It didn’t hurt that my overly handsome husband, Philip, went on tour too. These experiences gave me the opportunity to learn from very talented musicians and vocalists as well as travel all over the country. We led worship at churches and camps and because we didn’t have smartphones way-back-when, we were able to go sightseeing along the way! Harvestfest and Springfling were always events I looked forward to. We had so much talent in our student body and those events gave us such a great opportunity to be exposed to different performances that we never expected. I also acted in the play, Taming of the Shrew, directed by David Smith. It was an unforgettable cast (just don’t ask me who they were) and experience for me.

How did Evangel help you identify/develop your calling?

My calling, right now, is to raise these young men of mine. Is there a higher calling than training up the next generation of world-changers? Other than pizza delivery, I can’t think of one. Seriously though, I have known since I was young that I have a calling on my life to bring a message of hope to the world through my music. This year I took that first step in fulfilling another dream of mine by releasing my very first album of original music. The best part is that it is for sale and you can buy it!

Careers come and go but the most meaningful things in my life began at Evangel University. I’m grateful for my husband, Philip, whom I met there. Traveling with Frontline was just the beginning of my adventures on the road. We have traveled all over the country since then and lived in places from Maine to Alabama to Alaska. My experience at Evangel University also prepared me for this new venture more than I knew. I gained confidence and honed my musical abilities like only the experience of repetition can do in performing arts.

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

Right now young people (and not-so-young) may think they know exactly what they want their future to look like. Or, perhaps, they have no idea how the next step will look and cannot fathom seeing past today. How does one enter the real world? Doors open and doors close. This is a fact in life. The only thing one can do today is to prepare themselves with the knowledge they have now and not worry about tomorrow. So BE PRESENT! Tomorrow will worry about itself. Evangel is providing the stepping stones for a bright and successful future. Enjoy this step. Focus on being the best person one can be today and the future will provide the right doors. When found, all one has to do is knock.

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

Talent, experience, and head knowledge are important, but they are not the most important things I would consider if I were hiring. A good work ethic, showing up on time, being ready to learn and able to take criticism without falling apart, a positive attitude, owning up to mistakes with honesty. These are the qualities I would be looking for.

Also, people who like my music jump to the top of my list. You can listen to it now at www.karijoymusic.com.