2010 Alumnus of the Year
We are pleased to announce Jackie Armstrong ('93) as 2010 Alumnus of the Year.
And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. These powerful words from Colossians 3:17 have carried Jackie Armstrong throughout her life – first through an unfortunate family situation then through life in the state foster care system where she lived in three Christian foster homes.
Following the loss of her mother, Jackie and her two siblings went to live with her grandmother and grandfather. Jackie’s grandparents, however, soon realized that they could not provide for the children and began seeking a Christian family that would take them in. A family from Shadow Mountain Community Church where Jackie’s grandmother attended agreed to take Jackie and her siblings under their care. It was through the witness of these Christian foster homes that Jackie became grounded in her faith.
Jackie looks back on her past with a grateful heart. “God leading me into Christian foster homes and grounding me spiritually is true evidence of how God has worked in my life,” she said. “It was when I was in junior high that I became a Christian. My foster families kept me connected with church where I continually attended Bible studies, youth group activities and Sunday school.” This local connection eventually brought Jackie to San Diego Christian College to study Physical Education. “At that time, I wanted to become a teacher and coach,” said Jackie.
When Jackie arrived at SDCC, she played on the women’s club soccer team. The next year, she would help launch the SDCC Women’s Volleyball Team’s inaugural season. Before coming to SDCC, Jackie had never played volleyball, but her athleticism allowed her to easily learn the sport. Jackie stated, “Coach Jon DePriest, along with all of the faculty and staff, were good examples of Godly character.”
During Jackie’s summer breaks, she worked at Hume Lake Christian Conference Center. “It was a way of taking care of myself — to have a place to stay,” Jackie said. By her fourth summer, Jackie became a counselor. “As a counselor, I loved working with youth. I now work with college students and Hume Lake sparked that interest in working with youth. I continually use this motto: Invest, Impact and Influence the lives of others.”
While at SDCC, Jackie dedicated time serving the Student Development and Faculty Offices, was always on the Dean’s List, and ultimately graduated with Honors. After graduation, Jackie became an integral part of the SDCC staff. Her roles included: Women’s Resident Director, Director of Residential Life, Sports Information Director, Assistant Volleyball coach, Assistant Women’s Soccer Coach and Associate Athletic Director.
According to her former coach, Dr. Jon DePriest, “Jackie is an energetic, focused, athletic Christian. Her amazing character and integrity shows to all who come to know her. Jackie has a heart for college students and a passion to help them develop into Godly adults. Her athletic talent, dedication, ministry heart, and consistent giving of her time led her to become the 2010 San Diego Christian College Alumna of the Year.”
In 2001, Jackie obtained her Masters of Education degree in College Student Affairs from Azusa Pacific University. She now serves as a Resident Hall Director and Housing Coordinator for Point Loma Nazarene University. According to Jackie, her work at PLNU has strengthened her passion for working with college aged women. Jackie also served as a volunteer board member on the Peninsula Women’s Soccer League and currently plays goalie for various indoor and outdoor soccer teams.
Jackie’s connection with SDCC still continues. She keeps in touch with faculty and staff members and returns each year to help with volleyball and basketball stats for SDCC’s athletic department. In her words, she “deeply cares about SDCC.”