Jamie Grimes dreamed of becoming an artist. Growing up, she was always drawing and working on art projects. “I never knew what I wanted to do. I just knew I wanted to be an artist,” she said.
As the years passed, Grimes started to feel conflicted about her future. She was unsure if she should keep art as a hobby or pursue it as a career. “Even though I loved art, I wasn’t sure if that was what I was meant to do,” Grimes said. “I felt very confused about which direction I should take. So, I prayed that the Lord would lead me down the correct path.”
Her prayers were answered when she was assigned a project in high school to shadow a professional in the field of her choice. Grimes’ aunt, who works as a speech pathologist, offered her an opportunity.
Grimes got a behind-the-scenes look of what a speech pathologist does. After learning about the responsibilities, she wanted to learn more about the profession. “A speech pathologist has the opportunity of working with so many different kinds of people. It is an opportunity to use the gifts that God gave me to help others,” she said.
When it came time to choose a program of study, she knew communication disorders with a minor in art was the right choice. “It was a wonderful combination. The professors in both of those programs are so amazing. I was so blessed to have faculty that really cared about my well-being and wanted to see me thrive,” Grimes said.
The Journey to BJU
As a legacy student, Grimes heard many stories about BJU throughout her childhood. “My parents are alumni. They met and fell in love there. They told me that the kind of friendships and connections that you make at Bob Jones last a lifetime,” she said.
While her parents encouraged her to attend any college she wanted, Grimes decided that BJU was the right place for her. “I always knew this was the right place for me. Not only because of my parents, but because of the atmosphere at Bob Jones. You are in a community of like-minded people. A place where you feel loved and accepted,” she said.
While at BJU, Grimes took advantage of every opportunity that God placed in her life. She invested her time into learning from her classes, meeting new people and participating in intramural sports.
“Before you go to college, everyone tells you that you will have to say no to a lot of things. You will have to say no to friends and opportunities to prioritize your studies. But I believe we need to learn how to say yes. Saying yes can be even more important than saying no sometimes. You never want to shut down an opportunity that God has for you,” Grimes said.
During her freshman year, Grimes joined the Lady Bruins volleyball team. “Being a part of a team is one of the best decisions you can make. Everyone is working towards one common goal. Your teammates become like your sisters,” said Grimes, who played at the intercollegiate level for three years.
Balancing a full course load and the time commitment of playing a sport initially caught Grimes off guard. “It was definitely something I struggled with for a while. I had to learn a lot about time management. In between practice, classes and schoolwork, it was a lot to handle.
“I believe God gave me the strength to manage all of my responsibilities with grace. He was my strength and my refuge. Whenever I needed Him, He was always there.”
Her Next Steps
Grimes is looking forward to the future by making plans to further her education. “I was recently accepted into graduate school. After I finish my master’s, I would also love to work towards a doctorate degree,” Grimes said.
“Education is such a beautiful gift that God gives to us. It is a gift that gives us the opportunity to learn skills that can help others. I think education is something that we can take for granted sometimes. Not everyone has access to an education.”
While Grimes is ready to close this chapter in her life, she will never forget what BJU taught her.
“As cheesy as it might sound, the biggest lesson that BJU taught me was to Learn, Love, Lead. As I go out into the world, I will never stop learning, l will always do my best to love others, and I will lead people to Christ,” she said.