Connor Robert Charles Durochia is a Youth and Family Studies major. This interview was taken during his freshman year on the Rockland campus.
Where are you from? What is your hometown like?
I am from a small town called Hinesburg in the state of Vermont. It is near (30 minutes away) from the city of Burlington, probably one of the few places an outsider might recognize. My town is very rural. There are at least 10 farms in just my town. Life is quiet. Many people leave Hinesburg and go to other towns to “have fun.” However, Hinesburg is home to my high school which serves five neighboring towns. So, we have one of the biggest and best public high schools of Vermont.
What interested you about your major?
I was interested in Youth and Family Studies since it is the ministry major that I have had the most experience in. There are two reasons for this. One: my mom runs an in-home childcare. Since I was born, I have been living with about eight other kids with me on any given weekday. From a young age, I have learned how to interact with and be a mentor to children in a daily way. It is natural for me to be with children. Two: at my C&MA church, our youth group was dwindling as I progressed through high school. Instead of treating me like one of the other youth members, my pastor took me under his wing and had me help him lead and grow our youth group. It was during that time that my vision for youth grew and I grew in my faith as well.
I see a need for the gospel among teenagers of America. Many are lost, seeking the things of this world. More and more youth think they can make it on their own and don’t need Jesus. They need to know that there is more than drugs, sex, and fame. Jesus is greater and better than all those things.
How has your experience at Nyack been so far? What is your favorite part about Rockland campus?
Great! Before arriving here I was praying to find a solid group of friends. God answered this prayer right away. By the end of the first week I had already met many people and started a prayer group with six other guys. The Honors Program has also helped me engage with some awesome people and form solid relationships.
My favorite part about Rockland campus is Pardington. Chapel is just amazing. I love how the worship always leaves room for the Holy Spirit; it isn’t just rushed, song to song. I am really able to get real with God during Chapel because of the atmosphere that is created.
Why did you pick Nyack College? Was it your first choice?
I picked Nyack first and foremost because it is a Christian and Missionary Alliance School. I wanted to go to a school that would be speaking the Truth. Since I grew up in the Alliance, I believe in their views on God and the Bible. The C&MA is doing amazing things around the globe. I wanted to be a part of that and knew that going to Nyack College would give me access to those opportunities.
Nyack was also great because it is only 5 hours from my house, and is close to NYC without actually being in the city.
Nyack was my first choice over Gordon College. Those were the only two schools I was looking at. While Gordon was great, it could not compare to the sense of comfort I felt when visiting Nyack for the first time. Honestly what sealed the deal was the Chapel service I got to attend on my Nyack visit. There I knew that God was calling me to Nyack.
What is the hardest part about being away from home? What is something that you miss the most?
To be honest, I think my parents have been missing me more than I have been missing them. I don’t mean that in a bad way. It’s just that everyone at Nyack was so welcoming right from the beginning. Any fears that I came in with were gone by the second day. It was awesome. I do miss my family, but not in a way that I’d rather be home than here.
The hardest part about being away from home is not being able to be with my siblings. Many people find it surprising, but I consider my sister one of my best friends. She is someone who understands me deeply, gets my humor, enjoys similar food and drink as me, and is someone who I can hang out with during any part of the day. We can do basically anything together. My brother, on the other hand, was someone I’ve been intentionally trying to spend more quality time with. It’s hard to keep a strong connection with just text and calling.
How was your deeper life experience?
It was great! I loved the worship and energy. Felt like being at a weekend Christian camp like Berea or Young Life.
What did the speaker say that caught your attention?
Dr. Michael and Mrs. Lisa Plunket spoke with such truth and authority. It was an honor to hear them speak. Through them, God spoke to me. The line that stood out the most was: “Stop telling God your plans; Start looking for His.”
So often in prayer we ask God to be with us in our day. We pray that He would bless our plans. We desire for Him to make us successful in the things we want to do. But often, what we want to do isn’t exactly what He has planned for us. Because of this we need to seek His will. He has a plan for our lives. To experience all that God has for us we need to follow His plan. This was a wakeup call for me. Instead of coming to Nyack College and asking God to help me find good friends and do well in my classes, I need to be seeking all that He has in store for me. He has taken me to Nyack for a reason beyond my understanding. I need to seek that out.
What was your favorite part about Deeper Life?
Well, the worship was great– I can’t state that enough–but the prayer that came out of worship was even more powerful. Praying for one another at the end was amazing. There is power in numbers, especially in prayer. When asked to pray for one another it put us in a situation where we saw each other as brothers and sisters in Christ. That is how it should be. We are all here at Nyack, struggling through things, but all striving to seek God. When we prayed with one another, those statements were made true.