Everyone who calls Northwest Nazarene University their alma mater has special memories of chapel and the opportunities for spiritual growth presented at NNU. For the past 20 years, Rev. Gene Schandorff has blessed the NNU community with his dedication as University chaplain while coining the phrase “let’s come to chapel.”
Prior to coming to NNU, Gene served as youth minister at Ventura and Anaheim First Church of the Nazarene in Calif. He also pastored Long Beach Bixby Knolls Church of the Nazarene and Arcata Church of the Nazarene.
In 1992, NNU’s then President Gordon Wetmore invited Gene to come to the University. During his time here he has been instrumental in shaping the spiritual development component of a student’s NNU experience, which manifested itself in mission trips, ministry groups, wing teams and leadership retreats, to name a few.
Gene’s impact on students lasts beyond the college years as well. For alumna Andrea Hubbard, Gene was so influential during her student years that she asked him to officiate her wedding in August 2009. “Gene had always been a source of encouragement during my time at NNU, not only because his chapel messages always spoke to my heart, but also because I knew I could ask him the hard questions without feeling uncomfortable.”
…seeking the ‘Jesus Way’ is both my challenge and my joy.
Outside of preaching, Gene enjoys hiking, camping and bicycle touring. Gene has been married to LaRita for 39 years; together they have two children and five grandchildren.
At this point in my spiritual journey,” Gene said, “I believe that the most important thing I can do is to be truly Christian…seeking the ‘Jesus Way’ is both my challenge and my joy.”
Chaplain Schandorff’s 20 years at NNU were celebrated earlier this month during chapel. Students, faculty and staff enjoyed cake with Gene and presented him with a small gift. In response to the recognition, Gene said, “I am thankful for the 20 years NNU has given me.”
NNU Vice President for Spiritual and Leadership Development Fred Fullerton said, “Over two decades Gene has ministered effectively to multiple generations of students at NNU. His chapel messages and influence continue to challenge our thinking and call the campus community to a deeper walk with Christ.”