A long history with Drew finds her back on campus as a student
Waters, originally from Philadelphia, grew up in Madison. As a teenager, she worked part-time at Drew’s food services, attended concerts, and hung out with local friends on campus.
“I was always very comfortable at Drew,” said Waters. “I appreciated the diversity. Drew students make Madison interesting.”
Today, Waters is a Patient Aligned Care Team (PACT) social worker at the East Orange VA Medical Center in New Jersey, a position she has held for the past 12 years. “It’s really my pleasure to serve veterans in this way, it’s awesome,” she said. “I experience my work as aligned with God’s plans and purpose. It has me on this purpose and journey.”
While she loves her work, Waters began questioning her ability to make the impact she wanted at her current position. She is especially concerned for the surviving Vietnam veterans who may be trying to cope with the circumstances they faced during the war.
Grappling over an endless workload and how to fully incorporate spirituality in whole health, Waters recalls hearing God voice the words “chaplain services.”
Waters, who lives across the street from the Drew campus, pondered God’s message. “I knew I needed an MDiv, so looking out my front window and seeing Drew, I said ‘I bet Drew U has an MDiv program.’”
In the better part of a month, Waters applied and was accepted into Drew’s MDiv program and hasn’t looked back.
“What stands out is the grace that has been extended,” said Waters of her time at the Theological School. “Unmerited, unearned, one-way love and acceptance has been extended to me in abundance. When I think I can’t, they think I can.”
Upon completion of her MDiv, Waters plans to continue at East Orange VA Medical Center in the chaplaincy department. “This is my journey in an act of faithfulness.”