Evangel Profile

Leah Eltiste: Environmental Science major and art enthusiast

April 29, 2013

Leah Eltiste will tell you she’s both right- and left-brained.

A junior Environmental Science major with an affinity for art, Leah is embracing both of her loves here at Evangel.

Along with her science courses, the girl from the tiny town of Peru, Nebraska, serves as the public relations coordinator for Evangel’s literary magazine, Epiphany; hikes with the Outdoor Adventure Club; and enjoys going downtown to visit Springfield’s First Friday Art Walks.

Leah is also an EU Host, and she says her own campus visit proved instrumental in influencing her choice of college.

“I highly recommend taking advantage of all the recruitment activities any campus has to offer,” she says. “That’s how you get a feel for the city and the students.”

Why did you choose to attend Evangel?

One of the big factors weighing my decision when I made my final decision to come to Evangel was how amazing my visit day was. The girl I stayed with for Bed & Breakfast made me feel right at home. While on campus, I got to meet a bunch of her friends, and everyone was incredibly nice and welcoming. After that, I couldn’t imagine going anywhere else, I already felt like I belonged at Evangel.

How did you decide on your major?

I spent my first two semesters here as an undecided major, taking Frameworks and art classes. Then, halfway through my second semester, I started to think about what I really wanted to do with my life. My academic adviser and I discussed my interests and goals, and it came down to me choosing between an Art or a Science major. I visited the Science Department and talked with an adviser about the Environmental Science program. When I left his office, I couldn’t have been happier. I felt like I had just made a very adult decision in choosing a major, and it has been a perfect fit.

What makes the environment at Evangel special?

Evangel is exceptional in so many ways. The professors in every department that I’ve been in have been extremely understanding and encouraging on both an academic and a spiritual level. Most of my professors began recognizing me on a first-name basis after only a few weeks of class, which is definitely something you don’t get on a larger campus.

What is the best thing about Department of Natural and Applied Sciences?

The professors. The Sci-Tech professors are all incredibly knowledgeable in their fields of study and have stories from experience that makes learning more interesting. Also, the lab assistants and tutor staff are indispensable – they are an incredible resource.

What’s your favorite extracurricular activity you have been involved in?

One of the best things I have done at Evangel so far is participate in the King Lear production last spring. Spending hours every day at practices helped me make some really close friendships with my fellow cast members. I also learned a lot about Shakespeare and the intricacies of putting on a full-length production.

What are your goals for after Evangel?

I really don’t know yet. I feel like the opportunities are endless. I may join the Peace Corps, do mission work, or simply get a job at as a park ranger. Who knows where God will take me?

Why should a prospective student choose Evangel?

Evangel is not only a small, close-knit, highly academic campus, it is Christ-centered. Evangel has Christian professors that integrate faith into the classroom.

How has living on campus added to your college experience?

The same students who I have classes with I see at lunch, at the gym and in the Joust. Living on a small campus creates a really close-knit community environment, which makes it really easy to make friends. Also, the girls on my floor and my RA have been amazing examples of godly women and constant sources of encouragement for me.