10 Under 10

Ten Who Are Making a Difference

Travel the Internet with the terms “millennial” and “stereotype” as your guide, and the message becomes pretty clear: The cohort born between 1980 and 2003 is perceived as entitled, lazy and high maintenance.

To get to know the Hope grads celebrated through the “10 Under 10 Awards” program is to learn otherwise. They are engaged, hard-working and thoroughly committed to service beyond self.

And it’s not that the college is hard-pressed to find recipients for the awards, people who are:

  • emerging leaders making significant contributions by living out their calling;
  • engaged in the local or global community through professional and/or volunteer involvement; and
  • serving as an outstanding young role model for current and future students and alumni by showcasing the attributes of a graduate anchored in Hope.

In fact, the Alumni Association Board of Directors began the “10 Under 10” program last year because there were so many young grads leading (as per Hope’s mission) “lives of leadership and service in a global society” that honoring just one or two or even three annually wasn’t enough.

Recognized during the college’s Oct. 11-13 One Big Weekend: Homecoming and Family Weekend, this year’s award recipients spent time on campus with faculty and students participating in a panel discussion reflecting on their educational and professional journeys. Then they celebrated at CityFlats Hotel at the 10 Under 10 Soirée with family, friends and other members of the Hope community.

Kristin Dittenhafer-Reed

’09Kristin Dittenhafer-Reed

Holland, Michigan
Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry Researcher

“Not only did I receive an excellent liberal arts education as a student at Hope College, but I also experienced for the first time a connection with a Christian community, and realized the importance of critically evaluating my worldview. As a faculty member in the Department of Chemistry, I strive to provide the same high quality, transformative experience to current Hope College students by modeling Hope’s mission.”

Adam Maley

’13Adam Maley

Brighton, Massachusetts
Postdoctoral Fellow and Disease Diagnostics Researcher

“The mentorship I received, both inside and outside the classroom, from numerous professors during my Hope education was so impactful. Many of these professors put their students’ needs above their own. My Hope experience has given me the desire to follow a similar path of teaching and mentorship at a primarily undergraduate university or college.”

Lindsey Ferguson Hanson

’09Lindsey Ferguson Hanson

New York, New York
Dancer and Actress

“As I work in and out of NYC, I strive to maintain Hope’s vision of being a leader in my community, bringing hope and positive change to those around me. I’m here to make a difference in my community—pressing on to be the hands and feet of Christ–backstage, in the audition room, on the subway, in Times Square, or on my neighborhood block.”

Rachel Bakken Romero

’09Rachel Bakken Romero

Lakewood, Colorado
Energy Engineer

“Hope provided me with a well-rounded education including excellent writing and an understanding of cultural topics, and more. This has been invaluable for the variety of work that I have done. Hope prepared me to be not only a professional worker, but a leader in my community… Hope made me confident in communicating my faith to others and how to live out my calling in a way that was faithful.”

Andreana Rosnik

’13Andreana Rosnik

San Fransico, California
Artist and Computational Scientist

“My liberal arts education at Hope showed me how academic excellence and ethical values can not only coexist, but also lead to innovation and impact. Seeing so many individuals go on to pursue vocations helping others not only demonstrates Christian values in action, but also that one can be professionally successful while working for a greater good.”

Christine Washington Michel

’09 Christine Washington Michel

Jacksonville, Florida
Attorney and Law Office Owner

“Academically, Hope gave me more opportunities to explore what I wanted to do long term. Spiritually, Hope gave me ownership of my faith. No longer was church and Christianity something my parents made me participate in, but it was my own and I blossomed by going to the Gathering and chapel and eventually found a closely knit group of believers to help me grow beyond what I could have imagined.”

Diego Romero

’09Diego Romero

Lakewood, Colorado
Elementary School Principal

“The education I received from Hope has impacted many students of mine. Many of them have now graduated from high school and are now pursuing their college degree. Throughout my career, I have supported students in both academics and social-emotional needs. I have supported them in having grit in order to graduate from high school and reach their full potential.”

Allison Garza Wicker

’10Allison Garza Wicker

Amman, Jordan
Humanitarian Aid International Consultant and Information Analyst

“I joined Hope College because of the mission statement — about impacting global leaders, preparing them to operate from the context of the historic Christian faith. Hope College developed my character further through rigorous liberal arts education that encouraged me to think outside of the box.”

Matt Rutter

’12Matt Rutter

Sylvania, Ohio
Company Founder, Church Planter and Microenterprise Training Curriculum Developer

“I am a completely different man as a result of my four years at Hope. I was taught how to pray, how to study Scripture, how to think, how to ask questions, how to write, how to present, how to work hard, how to repent, how to serve, how to laugh, how to endure, how to care, and how to love well. Whether in my role as a co-founder of our companies, my volunteering, or in our church plant, it is hard for me to imagine how any of this would have been possible without the formative years I was blessed with at Hope.”

Hillary Delhagen

’09Hillary Delhagen

Brooklyn, New York
Correctional Health Services Creative Arts Therapist

“I never pictured myself working in a correctional facility doing what I love. Hope taught me that we must recognize, embrace and celebrate the uniqueness of all people, regardless of their background and their past actions… The well-rounded education I was provided allows me the strength to work with such a challenging population where I can offer the same values Hope offered me; belonging, love, dignity, respect and growth.”