Kristin Brouwer is the new director of discipleship here at Northwestern. She describes herself as a “passionate follower of Jesus, who loves a good coffee, good conversation, and hiking.” She is also a dog mom to a 5-year-old Maltese named Bonhoeffer.
Brouwer was a student at NW and was an Elementary Education major with a middle school coaching endorsement who graduated in 2004. Prior to working at NW worked a couple jobs that centered around youth. Before NW, she previously worked at Trinity Reformed Church in Orange City and as a teacher at Pella Christian Middle School. She also coached track, basketball and volleyball at the high school and college level. She started seminary in 2008 and completed in 2020 and walked for graduation in 2021. She was ordained as a pastor of word and sacrament in 2020 by the Reformed Church in America. She serves as a host mom to Sierra Tumbleson who states, “Kristin has been one of the most impactful people to me since I’ve been at NW.” She also goes on to say Kristin is the kind of person who asks if you need anything and actually means it and Kristin has always been a positive role model to Sierra for the past four years and is a woman blessed by God. Sierra enjoys having Kristin as her host mom because they have become great friends. Her house has always been a safe and relaxing place for Sierra to stay on breaks or when she was sick and needed somewhere to crash. According to Sierra, Kristin doesn’t do it because she is my ‘host mom,’ but because she is a wonderful person who is loving and caring to everyone. The label ‘host mom’ is just what initially brought us together.”
When asked about how much campus has changed, she stated that since her time as a student was a long time ago, things on campus have indeed changed. One such example of that is when she was a student there was chapel 4 times a week. Not only that, but Hospers was also a girl’s dorm and 2 of the houses she lived in no longer exist. According to Kristin, “There are many people, housing, and buildings that have changed but the core of who Northwestern is and their desire to make passionate, courageous, and faithful Christ followers has not changed.”“She has blessed our department by creating opportunities for our students to discuss challenging biblical and theological issues in spaces that are welcoming and supportive of Christian growth,” Dr. Mead said.
When asked about how much campus has changed, she stated that since her time as a student was a long time ago, things on campus have indeed changed. One such example of that is when she was a student there was chapel four times a week. Not only that, but Hospers was also a girl’s dorm and two of the houses she lived in no longer exist. According to Brouwer, “There are many people, housing and buildings that have changed, but the core of what NW is and their desire to make passionate, courageous and faithful Christ followers has not changed.”
As the director of discipleship, Brouwer oversees and facilitates the variety of small group and prayer ministries all over campus. She does this by equipping 10 paid student staff as well as training 35 volunteer student leaders. She also provides pastoral care, connects students with mentors, connects local churches with ministry efforts and supports students in worldwide service-learning efforts. Brouwer also works alongside Mark DeYounge. “Kristin is a wonderful shepherd, her resilience, steady strength and zeal for seeing people fuller and freer in Jesus is contagious and inspiring,” said DeYounge. He also stated she’s been a gift and blessing to work with, even though it has only been a handful of months.