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Character Quote
I reckon him a Christian indeed who is not ashamed of the Gospel, nor a shame to it.
Matthew Henry

2013 Staff [Photo]


Lauren DunnTop ^

Lauren Dunn [Photo] DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS - Lauren cherishes her memories of being an AIC student, assistant teacher, and teacher, and has thoroughly enjoyed her time on staff. As a 2009 homeschool graduate, she is grateful for the many ways she has been blessed through home education. Last December, Lauren graduated from a distance-learning college program with a bachelor's degree in communications, a degree she has since been working to put to use through freelance writing. Lauren enjoys spending time with her family, reading, and experimenting with new recipes - though her family hopes some of her experiments are never repeated.

Cade HiebschTop ^

Cade Hiebsch [Photo]STAGE LEADER - Cade follows a long tradition of Hiebsch involvement in AIC and has served as an actor, assistant teacher, or teacher since 2005. He is a favorite among fellow teachers and students alike and is excited to be coming on board for his first year as a staff member. He looks forward to putting his contagious enthusiasm to good use on stage as he leads hundreds of eager children in learning songs and memory verses.

Chandler HiebschTop ^

Chandler Hiebsch [Photo]GRAPHIC DESIGNER - Chandler has been involved with AIC since its first year in one way or another. She has served as a teacher, materials coordinator, piano player, prayer partner, song-writer, curriculum writer, drama writer/actress, and stage assistant teaching songs and verses.

She is a 2005 homeschool graduate, a 2009 Manhattan Christian College graduate, and she earned her Bachelors of Science in Nursing from Wichita State in 2011. She currently works as a pediatric nurse, and loves taking care of “her” little ones at the hospital. She'd much rather see your kids at AIC though, than at her day job :). Chandler is newly engaged, and is excited to be getting married this August to her best friend, Luke Lear!

Cori ThonenTop ^

Cori Thonen [Photo] MATERIALS SUPERVISOR - Cori is a 2005 homeschool graduate and has served AIC in the past as a supporting actress, assistant teacher, and teacher. This year, her position on staff includes organizing the materials needed for AIC and editing the teacher's curriculum. Cori's interests include tutoring, gardening, and photography. She has also received training in the emergency medical field. She loves being near her husband, reading, dancing, and being outdoors - mainly hiking, fishing, canoeing, or being with her dogs.

Isaac ThonenTop ^

Isaac Thonen [Photo] DRAMA DIRECTOR - Isaac is a homeschool graduate who has been involved with AIC since 2008 as a teacher, actor, assistant drama director, and director. He enjoys children and has helped with several children's activities, including being a dance instructor. He works as a concrete finisher and is pursuing a degree in Business Administration. He is fond of reading, watching movies and documentaries, driving, walking, and relaxing with his wife.

Natalie WickhamTop ^

Natalie Wickham [Photo] AIC DIRECTOR - Natalie was part of the core group of young people that dreamed and prayed and planned and finally saw AIC become a reality. She was homeschooled from 4th grade through college and has a passion for equipping and challenging upcoming generations of homeschoolers to be godly leaders in the world. Natalie is also the author of Pajama School - stories from the life of a homeschool graduate, co-author of Born to Deliver, and producer of Journey to Self Publishing - 12 steps to successfully publish your book.

In addition to her involvement in the homeschool sphere, Natalie operates her own business as an Independent Music Teacher, where she maintains a studio of around 30 piano students, and runs Music Matters Blog. She is blessed to reside at home with her parents and three of her younger siblings and loves spending time with them - studying the Bible, discussing current issues, playing games, and learning and growing together.

"Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore" Psalm 16:11.

Luke WisnerTop ^

Luke Wisner [Photo] CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER - I see knowing Jesus Christ as the most important thing in life. My utmost desire is to grow to know Him more and have the joy of making Him known to others.

"He must increase and I must decrease" John 3:30.

Brandon and Nellie WittTop ^

Brandon Witt [Photo]CURRICULUM COORDINATOR and TEACHER TRAINER - This will be Brandon's third year being involved with AIC. Though new to the workings of AIC and the homeschool community, Brandon is passionate about the Gospel and God's design for parents being the primary disciplers of their children. Impacting the lives of the teachers with the Word of God and training them to be disciplemakers not only during AIC but for the rest of their lives is incredibly exciting to him. He graduated from Central Christian College in McPherson, Kansas in 2007 with a BSM in ministry. He has worked five years in camp ministry and a short time at a group home for troubled teenagers.

Brandon is a licensed plumber and pastor-in-training whose desire is to raise a godly family and love Christ's Church for the glory of God. He believes one of the greatest ways to impact the world around him is to strive to love his wife as Christ loved the Church and train up children in the way of the Lord. When not working Brandon enjoys being outdoors, playing ultimate Frisbee, discipling, and reading his endless supply of books. Brandon's prayer for the AIC team, teachers, and students this year is that they would see Jesus as more precious and valuable than ever before and would give their lives more fully to knowing Him and making Him known throughout the whole world.

"…that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead" Philippians 3:10-11.

AIC Advisory Committee

AIC would not be possible without the dedication and investment of many young people who serve on our advisory committee, helping with everything from brainstorming, to writing, to drama stage assistance, to materials help, to student counseling, to coordinating facilities, and more! Here is a rundown of the amazingly talented 2013 Advisory Committee:

ALLISON DETRICK -

IAN FLETCHER -

ANNA FLORA -

BETHANY GORMAN - Bethany Gorman is the oldest of 5 children, all of whom are adopted. Her father, Jeffrey Gorman, is serving as the current TPA president. She has been involved in AIC since 2001 as a student, staff assistant, drama character, assistant teacher, or teacher. She saw a great need for a special class serving the 3-5 year olds, because many of the TPA board members had young children and were unable to run convention while caring for them. So, in 2009 the first "small" class began! It was an amazing blessing to so many parents, and Bethany loved teaching that class. Last year Bethany was on a yearlong mission trip teaching English in Taiwan, so she did what she could to help online and through prayer. This year she is extremely excited to be coming back to serve as the teacher to the class of little ones again. She has a passion for children, and loves travel. She has been on mission trips to Russia, Mexico, Taiwan and Thailand, and has traveled to several other countries. She is currently working on getting her BA in Education, and is teaching English to S Korean students online.

AIDEN HAMILTON -

ABIGAIL MCFARLAND -

HANNAH MCFARLAND -

JEREMIAH MCFARLAND -

CORINN SCHANTZ -

AMY SHELDEN - "Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it." (Luke 18:16, 17) Adventures in Character is a big part of Amy's life. For the past four years, Amy has enjoyed participating in the AIC program and has felt God's call on her life to share the Gospel with children. A two-time student in 2003 and 2004, she returned to the program as an assistant teacher during 2008's "Westward." Amy enjoyed the teaching aspect of the program, but felt that she could better use her gifts in the drama. In 2009's "Escape" and 2010's "Disappearance," she transformed herself into an evil slave driver and a cocky detective. She believes that portraying specific character traits has helped her to identify faults in her own character, and, with God's help alone, change them. Besides loving to participate in the AIC program, Amy also enjoys piano performance, reading classic literature, organizing, singing, and hanging out with her four sisters.

STEPHANIE SHELDEN - Stephanie has enjoyed Adventures in Character since she was a student in 2003 and 2004. For the past two years, she has enjoyed teaching and acting in the program. In 2009's "Escape," Stephanie landed a principal role in the drama and loved the close relationships that developed as a result. During 2010's "Disappearance," Stephanie performed on stage and off, acting in a minor role and teaching a large, vibrant class of children. She found that teaching taught her a lot about herself, especially that she liked to teach. Along with participating in AIC, Stephanie is an accomplished cellist in the Wichita Youth Symphony and singer in the Wichita Community Children's Choir. She also enjoys art, physical fitness, and hanging out with her loving family. One of her favorite Bible verses is Romans 15:1-3: "We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. For Christ did not please himself, but as it is written, 'The reproaches of those who reproached you fell on me'."

JOSEPH WICKHAM - Joey has survived fourteen years of life as the only boy in a family with five older sisters. He is excited to be taking on a bigger role with Adventures in Character this year after attending as a student for eight years and serving last year as an assistant teacher. He is assisting in the drama department with props and set building. Joey appreciates the opportunity to be involved in this ministry with the rest of his family and many of his friends. He enjoys playing cello in the Wichita Youth Symphony program (even if it does mean getting up early on Saturday mornings!) and has been taking piano lessons from his sister, Natalie, since the ripe old age of two. As soon as he's checked practicing off his list, Joey likes to spend time outside playing a variety of different sports, especially football and Frisbee. He loves playing a part in showing children the awesome power of Jesus Christ.

NAOMI WICKHAM - AIC has been a part of Naomi's life ever since it started in 1999 and she continued to participate every year after that until age eleven. Since then she has been an assistant teacher, actress, music assistant, and in 2010 took on the responsibility (with two other co-laborers) of creating the first original soundtrack for the AIC drama. Naomi has come to realize that the will of God is not just His life calling for her, but that He desires for her to live each day for Him and do everything she does to give Him glory. Over the last several years she has been striving to implement this into her life as she watches little children, writes, studies, gives speeches, composes, plays the piano, works on various design projects, spends time with her sisters and brother…and on occasion when trying to answer as intelligently as possible when people ask her why she's not "in school." She loves being homeschooled and has reaped the wonderful benefits of it all her life!

NOELLE WICKHAM - Since graduating in 2009, Noelle has continued to serve families through child-care, enjoying the time spent with children of all ages and personalities. She also enjoys playing piano, baking sweets, reading as much as possible, and spending time with family and friends, whether it's talking, playing games, or just having fun together. Noelle has had the opportunity to be involved in AIC from the beginning: as a student, assistant teacher and teacher, and each year has had its own new experiences and fun memories. Although helping in a different capacity this year, Noelle is excited to see the way God will work His will and glory in every part of the adventure that is a part of a new year of Adventures in Character.

CHERYL KAYE WISNER - Cheryl Kaye loves people - which is a good thing when you’re number eight of ten kids! She also loves the elderly (especially cute ones!) and children. She stays with an elderly couple a few days a week helping them out, and yes, they are adorable. She is very thankful for the opportunity to express her love for children through various church activities, nieces and nephews, and through AIC. This will be her third year helping with AIC and is she is super excited to be used wherever she is needed, all for the glory of God. A few other interests include being with family and friends, laughing, writing, piano, drama, politics, playing Balderdash and Quelf, and most of all growing to be more like Jesus, her one and only gracious Savior. "So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him, rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness" Colossians 2:6-7.

JEDIDIAH WISNER -