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This is the fourth installment of my Mentors Blog Series. Today I honor Coach Vance Walberg. He is currently the Assistant Coach at UMASS, but he was the Varsity Boy’s Basketball Coach at Clovis West High School while I was in school there. He was also my PE Coach. I know it doesn’t seem like much, but a PE Coach CAN have a profound impact on someone. I was never a motivated PE student, but there was something about Walberg that motivated and inspired me. One thing you’ve got to know about me is that negative motivators have little-to-no affect on me. Walberg drew it out, he made you believe you could do anything and then you would do it. He was tough on his students, but in a positive way. He made the class come together, cheer each other on and he forced us to know all about Character Counts.

I remember him teaching us about TRRFCC (Terrific). This acronym is what enabled me to remember the 6 Pillars of Character Counts.

  • Trustworthiness
  • Respect
  • Responsibility
  • Fairness
  • Caring
  • Citizenship

If you dig up the dirt, you know he wasn’t perfect. But looking past anything negative, this guy I respect. He wrote a college recommendation for me to Pepperdine, where he later coached for two years. He was one of my mentors.

Past Mentor Blog Posts:
Andy Benton
Cheronn Foster
Jason Foster

Mentors: Andy Benton

February 20, 2012 — 5 Comments

When I was a freshman at Pepperdine University, my roommate and I were invited to attend a bible study on Sunday nights at the president’s home on campus. It was on those nights, in that invitation-only crowd of students I learned some life-lessons from a man-of-God. Andy Benton was one of my mentors and in this video, you can see why… he’s a man of prayer.

Thank you Andy for investing in students like me.

This post is a part of a series of posts on my life mentors.

Frau D Gone Home

February 25, 2011 — 2 Comments

The Summer of 2002 I went to Heidelberg, Germany for a semester abroad. It was an incredible experience. I discovered a lot about myself, lens through which I view the world and developed some great friendships. One person that was a big impact during those few months was Frau (Mary) Drehsel. I just found out that she passed away and I wanted to share the article from IP office at Pepperdine.

*the following information and picture was taken from the Pepperdine University International Programs Website*

It is with great sadness that we announce that Mary Drehsel passed away around midnight (February 21, 2011). Mary was Professor of German and Academic Coordinator of Pepperdine University’s Heidelberg International Program. She touched the hearts of all the students and colleagues who knew her and loved her. She leaves behind her husband Karl Drehsel and four children, Susanna, Miriam, Karli and Markus. We grieve with them and encourage everyone to keep them in your prayers in the days and weeks to come.

In the 1970s, Mary came to Germany as a missionary and especially worked with children at the Gemeinde Christi in Heidelberg. She became a teacher of German at Pepperdine University in 1981 and later Academic Coordinator of the Heidelberg International Program in the 1990s. Mary was a courageous woman who bravely fought cancer for more than 18 years, she was a Christian role model to us all, a loving mother to her children and an inspiring teacher. Throughout the years, Mary touched and inspired students who came to study in Heidelberg. The outpouring of messages – in the hundreds – that have reached us all in the past hours is a testimony to the Christian life she led.

The Heidelberg International Program was graced with Mary Drehsel’s presence for almost 30 years and will never be the same without her. A memorial service will be held in Elkins on March 11, 2011 at 3pm.

The Drehsel family has many financial needs during this time. If you would like to contribute to the Drehsel Family Assistance Fund, we will make sure that all proceeds go directly to assist their needs. Please make checks to Pepperdine University; specify that the funds go to the Drehsel Family Assistance Fund and send to:

Pepperdine University

C/o Advancement and Gift Records
24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90263

You may also give to this fund online by going to:

Designate Seaver College; in memory of Mary Drehsel and specify that the gift is for The Drehsel Family Assistance Fund.


The Lost Poem

April 20, 2010 — Leave a comment

I recently found this poem. I wrote it about 7 or 8 years ago. I wonder what inspired it? I honestly don’t have a clue.

Men, Women, Children of God.
Listen to the voices that cry out and sob.
Have you heard their cries?
Have you seen their lives?
Have you fed their bodies?
Or been an instrument of God’s light?
If your answer is no, as I suspect
What are you waiting for, Jesus to come Back?
What will it take for you to step out?
A traumatic experience would work no doubt.
God calls you Now, He makes his claim.
You will help his people with the riches He has put in your name.

Stop lying to yourself,
Stop abusing God’s wealth,
There’s a reason you have what you have.
There’s a reason it’s in God’s plan.
Stop hating, stop hate.
Start love, don’t wait!
There’s so much to be done.
It’s your job He’s chosen YOU for this one.
Stop crying in selfishness,
Stop dying for nothingness.
You know what you have to do.
God has come specifically to you!

– Micah J. Foster –