Alumni Profiles: Where Are They Now?

Zipline catches up with alumni of DiscoveryBound and the A/U Ranches: Emily Martin, Rob and Nadine Terrell, and Tim Steckler.

Emily Martin

Emily Martin

Emily’s first summer at the A/U Ranches was in 2008. She loved being in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains so much that she returned several times, mainly part of the mountain programs as an Explorers and Mountaineers staff member. “I think I have peaked Mt. Huron like 10 times by now!” says Emily, who also was part of waterfront and theater at the A/U Ranches.  

Emily is also a graduate of the DiscoveryBound (DB) National Leadership Council (NLC) 2016 West class, where she met several amazing people. Her favorite part of the program was going to Grenada to teach swim lessons for her service trip.

In addition, Emily loved attending DB Outreach events in Southern California because of the atmosphere of love and all the fun activities. But that’s not the only place she enjoyed connecting with DiscoveryBound friends. “Hands down, my favorite place to do DB activities is in Buena Vista, CO, and anyone who has the opportunity to be there should be full of so much gratitude,” she says.

Over the last few years, Emily has gotten into biking and yoga, which she did in San Luis Obispo, CA, while completing her industrial engineering degree at California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly). She graduated cum laude in June. “It was so much fun to take classes outside of my major (like ballet and poetry writing) and discover how much I love doing so many things that are not usually expected when someone thinks of what a typical engineer is like.”  

Emily has also been involved with Society of Women Engineers (SWE), working with kids of all ages to encourage them to pursue STEM when they are older, as well as with companies to help college-age women get jobs in their field. She also served on the officer board for the past two years as scholarship director and then as meetings director.

For a little over a year, Emily has been working for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and recently moved to Pasadena to start full time as a process improvement engineer. She says she recently finished managing a project that will save JPL half a million dollars a year. 

“I’m really passionate about what I do there and am so excited to finally work in-person,” Emily says. “When I’m not working, you can usually find me taking walks with my chameleon, being creative either with paint or yarn, or refurbishing old furniture.

“I’m really lucky to have been so involved with Adventure Unlimited programs as a teenager,” she adds, “because it set such a strong foundation for me as a young adult.”

Nadine, Remington and Rob Terrell

Rob & Nadine Terrell

Rob has been at the A/U Ranches for as long as he can remember. “I think I was one of the youngest Explorers my first year,” he says, and he has been part of the mountain programs from Sky Valley through Round-Up. He dabbled in waterfront and rafting, but his heart will ever be on the mountain. 

“I looked up to my counselors and admired how they were able to gracefully convince us to hike on and enjoy it!” Rob says. “I always came home metaphysically recharged with a new outlook on life.” Rob went on to be a staff member at the A/U Ranches for the Explorers and Challengers programs. He even stepped into the camp director and strength coach positions. “Any excuse I can get to come back, I always jump on it!” 

Rob has just transitioned from being the head strength and conditioning coach at Principia College to being the sports information director and football coach at the Principia School. “I love being a facilitator of growth,” he says. “Coaching has always been a passion of mine.” Having the opportunity to make a difference in others’ lives is what drives Rob, and he is looking forward to seeing familiar faces at Principia School.

Nadine found Adventure Unlimited her junior year while attending Principia College. She was on staff for three years, working in Mosaics and white water kayaking, and each year was better than the last. “There is something about camp that just puts Christian Science into a perfect light,” Nadine says. “With every action or activity, pure joy and love is expressed.”

Nadine is the director of athletics communications at Principia College. Sports of all kinds are her passion, and being able to support in this role has been a big blessing, she says. Watching athletes compete, knowing all they do to get on the field, has always been inspiring.

Nadine and Rob are brand-new parents to a bouncing baby boy! Remington, born during the Covid shelter-in-place order, turned one in June and is the world to the Terrells. “We know that this last year was tough for many families, but having the time to be with Remi full time for a whole year was such a blessing,” Nadine says. “He is already exploring, and every day is a new adventure. We can’t wait to introduce him to the Ranches!”

Tim Steckler

Tim Steckler

When Tim was a part of the DiscoveryBound (DB) National Leadership Council (NLC), there was a moment on his class trip in 2012 to Peru to work with a local school community when he decided service work around the world was something he wanted to pursue. This, alongside the skills he learned to practice servant leadership and the amazing friendships he made, still continue to influence Tim’s life and work today.

After graduating from NLC in 2014, Tim earned his bachelor’s degree at Principia College in political science in 2018 and went on to earn his master’s of education at Harvard University, concentrating in international education policy.

Tim is an applied theater educator and facilitator who works with groups around the world to unpack issues they face and explore opportunities to overcome these challenges. He has led workshops with refugee youth in Palestine and Jordan; used theater as a means of exchange between students in the United States and Nepal, Iraq, and elsewhere; and during the pandemic he brought together groups online to utilize theater as a training tool for allyship with marginalized communities following the murder of George Floyd in 2020. 

Tim also enjoyed co-facilitating a theater workshop at Principia College in May 2021 with fellow NLC classmates Niklas Peschke (2014) and Elle Miller (2014) alongside Principia graduate Jocelyne Jam, exploring how to foster an anti-racist Principia community with students and college alumni.

Tim is currently based out of Brooklyn, New York, continuing to find ways to use theater as a dialogue and peacebuilding tool, and looks forward to the many adventures ahead!

Where are you now? Let us know! Email [email protected].

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