Baylor Math Stories: Brooke Bonadies

March 20, 2021

Dear Mathematics Department donors,

I cannot thank you enough for your generosity in donating to the Department of Mathematics. Your contributions have made an enormous impact on my life. I’d like to share my personal story of how I chose to come to Baylor and my experience here in hopes that you will realize the significance of your donations to me.

I grew up in Tolland, Connecticut and am from a family of six. I knew my parents were going to help me financially with college to a certain extent, and I had it all planned out. Baylor proved to be too large of a sum. So, on May 1, I chose UConn. It was the logical, safe option. It wasn’t until June after graduating from high school that I decided to take the financial risk of going to Baylor. I had prayed so much, and sometimes it takes making the wrong decision first to realize what you are meant to do. I felt called to take the risk even though Baylor did not have my desired major—civil engineering, and I had only toured once on Dia Del Oso over a year ago! This decision made no sense to my parents. It was completely faith-led.

I moved to Texas very nervous but determined to work hard to reverse the projected debt. I started out majoring in Pre-engineering, as planned, but switched to Business Fellows with concentrations in Math and MIS. Math has always been a love of mine, and it felt good to major in something I was confident in. Freshman year, I took 18 and 17 hours respectively while maintaining a 20-hour a week job at Magnolia, a 4.0 GPA, and training by myself to recover from an ACL tear and walk on to Baylor’s Cross Country and Track team. But the financial support from the math department really served as a source of encouragement for me in this hard time.

Sophomore year, I made the cross country and track team after training 10 months by myself, but I knew I needed to maintain a job. I picked up grading for the math department and met and worked with many amazing math professors. These include Dr. Hunziker, Dr. Meddaugh, Dr. Hunter, Dr. Herden, and Dr. Nam. This job really gave me energy and excitement, as I was able to brush up on old math skills and feel like I was helping a professor. I really wanted to do a great job for them, especially because the department was funding scholarships for me, lightening my burden.

Junior and senior year, I have maintained status as a grader and picked up another job as an archivist assistant at Caroll Library while competing and traveling for Baylor cross country and track. Every summer, I have interned full time at Travelers Insurance or AT&T Headquarters. This has caused me to have very loaded academic semesters in order to avoid taking summer classes, freeing up my ability to work full-time. I am very grateful for Baylor’s mathematics department for giving me the skills and knowledge to excel in these opportunities as well.

I let you know all of these details in hopes that you know that I have worked as hard as possible to succeed financially, and your scholarships lifted a MASSIVE burden from my shoulders. I sincerely cannot thank you enough. I want you to know that I will have no debt coming out of college. And this makes emotional to write. Yes, I have worked very hard, but donations were just so gracious, so how can I not try my very best to make the most of them? You can be assured that your money has gone towards the education of a person who truly takes every penny seriously and to heart.

In response to your generous gift, I am so encouraged to become a donor myself after having worked full time for a few years. I am projected to start July 2021 as an IT consultant for Ernst & Young in Dallas, and I cannot wait to put my best effort forth. So, thank you for inspiring me to succeed with your donations and for showing me Christ-like generosity. It means the world. As this time comes to a close, I cannot believe that I will be debt-free. And I cannot express enough gratitude to you for making this a possibility. Thank you so, SO much.


- Brooke Bonadies