When applying for college, Kaylee Kirby had one thing in mind…playing tennis. Growing up thirty minutes away in Elbert County, Emmanuel College wasn’t on Kaylee’s radar until she began talks with Head Tennis Coach Kethan Darbar. After taking a visit to Emmanuel, Kaylee began to realize her dream college was closer to home than she once thought.
“I found out that Coach Darbar had already tried to contact me while he was at King (University), and I never received his email,” Kaylee said. “It was such a God thing, he offered and I signed with Emmanuel right away.”
After playing Tennis last season Kaylee decided not to play this year, instead focusing on other interests including becoming a Student Admissions Counselor. She also began pursuing her love for photography, taking photos for Sports Information Director, Ryan Rosbury.
A Digital Media Production major, Kaylee is minoring in Digital Media Production and has a passion for cameras, videography and post production.
“I love it,” Kaylee said. “I really didn’t start getting into it until the end of high school but it’s something I like to do. I think why I’m so passionate about that, videography and editing is that you can portray something however you want to.”
This is Kaylee’s second year at EC, however she is considered a junior because she dual-enrolled at Athens Technical College during her senior year of high school.
She believes her time at Emmanuel has helped prepare for a successful future, however not all of what she’s learned at EC has been in a classroom setting.
“In high school the professors were so different,” Kaylee said. “Teachers would go to work and do their jobs, but here the professors I’ve had all care so much. I know we’re at a private institution, but it goes beyond that. I feel like it’s easy to scope out if something is not authentic, and a lot of the professors here are just passionate about what they do. I think learning about different types of personalities and the different types of passions people have has been my favorite thing. I think that’s going to teach me the most about life and where I’m going.”
As a student counselor, it’s Kaylee’s job to share her Emmanuel experience with prospective students and their parents, an aspect of the job she enjoys.
“I remember in high school Mac (Mackenzie Dye) contacting me,” Kaylee said. “Now it’s easier to relate because I know what it’s like to be on the other end of the phone.”
Kaylee thought she would get involved in Student Life and help plan campus activities, but God had a different plan for her that he revealed to her through a vision over a year ago.
“He showed me this vision of me praying over applications,” Kaylee said. “I didn’t think about it until last week after I already had the job with Admissions and was doing applications every day. He’s so fulfilling even when I’m not thinking.”
From this experience, Kaylee has learned one important lesson about the power of God.
“It has nothing to do with doing, but has everything to do with being,” Kaylee said. “If we can just be and listen to Him and be aware of Him all day long, we’re going to be in tune with Him and will end up in the place He wants us to be.”
Through sharing her story, Kaylee hopes to counsel prospective students when deciding what college is right for them, knowing that if they choose Emmanuel it’s because that’s where God wants them to be.
At Emmanuel, faculty and staff members have the freedom to share their faith with students however to Kaylee, a professor can impact a student’s life more through what they do rather than what they say.
“When it comes to impacting students what I’ve learned is it’s not about prayer before class, it’s about being it,” Kaylee said. “If we become the living word, if we become love that’s where it would stem from.”
What would her advice be for students looking at Emmanuel College?
“Even if you don’t know someone, you know them,” Kaylee said. “You have your group, but you can venture outside of your group and find your family. It’s not like a university where you see ten people that you don’t know every day. Emmanuel College is one big family. “