Kara Kauffman - Sociology


Originally from Alaska, Kara Kauffman is now putting down roots in Beaver County, PA. With a love for the past, Kara started at Geneva as a history major. Over spring break, she went on a Quest Trip to Aliquippa, PA. This service-learning trip allowed her to serve with various organizations and learn how people were actively engaging in the local community. Although Kara had a passion for history, she decided to change her major to sociology. Her new major not only aligned with her extracurricular community service but also provided her the opportunity to learn about community development from an academic standpoint.

Carrying this passion for community and restoration, Kara has found innumerable ways to integrate and bring what she has learned in the classroom to the larger community. Besides Quest Trips, she also serves at the local Good News Club (GNC), a kids club devoted to sharing the gospel of Christ in the public school system. She also attends Fairview Church where she is a youth leader, building relationships with the junior and senior high students there. In addition, over the summer, Kara interned and now works part-time at Stray Cat Studios in Beaver Falls, a local business devoted to bringing restoration and hope through beauty. On campus, she plays the tenor sax in Marching Band and for a couple of semesters, was the GNC coordinator in Geneva College’s Center for Student Engagement Office.

Her calling for community development reaches far beyond Beaver County. During her junior year, Kara studied abroad through Geneva’s Semester in Scotland Program.  She absolutely loved traveling and experiencing history in context, always with a perspective of what God had been doing through history in Scotland and what God was doing presently in the city in which she lived.  However, Kara’s favorite aspect of the trip was building relationships with the people there.

“Getting to spend time with people of all different ages was super powerful,” Kara recalls. “We always talk about the body of Christ transcending age, gender, and race, but it was amazing to actually live it out on a daily basis.”

As a college student, it would be easy for Kara to look away from the needs of others, but she chooses to follow God’s calling, looking outside of herself to the needs of the larger community.  “Geneva has given me the opportunity to go way beyond this campus,” states Kara.  Whether she’s learning about Aliquippa, spending time with inmates at the local jail, serving in Beaver Falls, visiting Pittsburgh, or traveling in Europe, Kara is thankful for the opportunities that God has provided to integrate into various communities and can’t wait to see where God leads her as she puts down roots in the Beaver County area.

“Through my major, I’m being exposed to more injustices than I want to admit are going on around me, making me feel so inadequate, but this is the place I want to be,” Kara states.  “I am inadequate; this is why I need to rely on God, and being at a school that seeks God first has been monumental for me now and as I go forth to fight injustice in the future.”

After she graduates, Kara desires to fight injustice in the world.  In an atmosphere of dependence on God, Kara has hope as she seeks to bring healing to the brokenhearted and awareness to others about the world’s many injustices.  She strives to have a vision of justice in every aspect of life.  Although she is not sure in what capacity she will accomplish this calling, she is excited to get started.

-Olivia Forton ‘19