News & Resources


2018 David C. Mahan Fellow - Jessica Callen

Feb 26, 2018

2018 marks the second year for Au Sable’s newest fellowship, the David C. Mahan Fellowship. This named award celebrates the life and legacy of former Associate Executive Director of the Au Sable Institute, Dr. Dave Mahan. During his 31 years of service at the Institute, Dave became known for his warmth, humor, and relational skills that made hundreds of friends for the Institute. The David C. Mahan Fellowship awards US $2000 towards tuition for 2 courses at Au Sable for a student who shows the ability to advance the work of creation care through creative and caring relational collaborations with others, a trait that was the hallmark of Dave Mahan’s work.

This year, the David C. Mahan Fellowship goes to Jessica Callen of Biola University, California. Jessica is an Environmental Science major with a minor in Biblical Studies who will be entering her 3rd year at Biola, this fall. This summer, she will be studying Lake Ecology and Management and Environmental Chemistry at the Great Lakes campus during Summer Session II. At her home campus, Jessica is a leader in environmental stewardship, not only is she the Organic Garden Manager at the school, and Professor’s Assistant for the Botany Lab, but Jessica also co-founded and leads the Biola Environmental Stewardship Team (B.E.S.T.).

“Jessica’s work ethic, respectful attitude, and helpfulness are inspiring to other students. Her excitement for environmental science is contagious and she exhibits a passion for life and learning that is inspiring to others,” shared Dr. Wendy Billock, Associate Professor of Biology at Biola.

Once she graduates, Jessica has aspirations to start a non-profit that helps the environment and also the people who live within it. In this career path, she will be able to draw on her education from Biola, experience leading creation care groups, and her passion for sustainable agriculture.

“This summer I’m looking forward to being in a Christian environmental community at Au Sable and being able to study God’s creation through Lake Ecology and Management as well as Environmental Chemistry,” Jessica explained. “I love that Au Sable is a school with field-based teaching where I get to have hands-on experience with what I’m learning and be able to explore a new environment that I’ve never been to before. Ever since I started attending Biola University and studying environmental science, I’ve been wanting to study at Au Sable in the summer and surround myself with people who are as passionate about exploring and learning about God’s creation as I am. Through the David C. Mahan Fellowship, I am now able to attend Au Sable this summer and I’m so excited to be a part of this amazing learning community.”

Congratulations Jessica! Your enthusiasm, commitment to doing good work and building community, exemplifies the legacy of Dr. Dave Mahan at Au Sable and has earned you the 2018 David C. Mahan Fellowship. We look forward to having you join our community this summer!