Brandon went to college in 1997 and never left. His dad became a Christian in college while studying chemistry, and then a campus minister, so campus ministry is in his blood. He has 2 degrees in business from UTD and has worked on the side in business consulting for most of his career. He enjoys reading and racquetball and running, but mostly just spending time with people–especially college students! He has a booming laugh and sometimes gets creepy texts while in the Student Union that say, “I know you’re here somewhere–I heard you laughing.”
Mandy graduated from UT Dallas with a Bachelors in Economics and Finance and from Amberton University with a Masters in Human Relations and Business. She was involved in starting FOCUS at UTD while she was a student there. This is where her passion and love for campus ministry began. Mandy married Andrew in 2002 and they both are crazy about their labrador Harvey.
Born in Windsor, Ontario, Sirak lived in Canada until 2000, when he moved to the United States. The son of Ethiopian immigrants, his life has been anything but ordinary. Upon arriving at Collin College to study Nursing, the Lord introduced him to FOCUS and changed his life forever. Through authentic community, he gained a vision for what a campus could look like when the students make Jesus Lord of their lives. He earned two degrees in Sociology and immediately joined the FOCUS staff. He also teaches sociology as an adjunct professor at Richland College.
Despite attempts to hide his native accent, Laurence is actually British. After moving with his family to DFW at age 10, he attended UNT and graduated with a BBA in Business. Laurence played the role of resident nerd and board gamer while on staff at UTD for 5 years, before leading our team at SMU. When not talking about C. S. Lewis, Laurence is passionate about investing in students and equipping them to be outward focused. He is married to Sarah and they have a dog baby named Goliath.
Peter actually came to UTD from the rainy side of Washington State, but his family soon moved to California, which he now calls home since it’s a better fit for his sunny personality. Peter has served as a worship pastor in various communities for eight years, and as a Corefa for three. Peter may be known as the “jumping worship pastor,” but hopes his love for Jesus can be seen even more clearly through his actions off the stage. His dream is to own a dog, but he needs some residential stability before that can be achieved.
Sarah was just a small town girl, living in a lonely world. Then she took a 6-hour drive going anywhere (UTD). Now school’s out forever because she graduated with her B.S. in Psychology and Child Learning Development. During her internship, God took her deeper than her feet could ever wander and her faith was made stronger. She’s realized since then through her various life experiences that girls just want to have fun, so she feels called to be a campus missionary at UTD to help them not just keep chasing pavement and shake it off.
When Sandra’s not busy letting every girl in FOCUS borrow her clothes, she can be found watching CNN or mourning the death of Bruiser Woods. Sandra graduated from UNT with a degree in Integrative Studies, concentrating in Journalism, Spanish, and Sociology. Sandra loved being involved in FOCUS as a student because it was through this ministry she was introduced to Jesus. Different people in her life encouraged and challenged her to do the apprenticeship last year, so she trusted God when he called her to join the Dallas staff. She is so excited for what God has in store in the coming years!
Eduardo is a man with the fiery Latino spice of 100 men combined, especially for the things of God. A recent graduate from UTD with a BS in Biology, Eduardo has loved being involved in FOCUS, where he has been able to experience an authentic community and gain tools for ministry and equipping those around him. He is so excited for what God has in store through the apprenticeship and the work that He is doing on our campuses!
Dawn recently graduated from UTD where she studied Healthcare Studies on the Pre-Dental track. During her gap year from dental school, she decided to do the FOCUS Apprenticeship as a way to invest in herself spiritually and into the community that made her collegiate experience so memorable and meaningful. When she’s not re-watching Shrek for the 373628845th time or avoiding the grocery store, she enjoys reading books and spending time with friends. Dawn is excited to be a part of the SMU plant and can’t wait to see what God will do on that campus.