How Christa found her calling in business

When she arrived at Penn College in 2015, Christa Watson knew who she was.

She was a pastor’s kid. She was a graduate from a Christian school in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Now she was pursuing a baking and pastry arts degree that would lead to a career in the hospitality industry. 

“Then I hit college,” she says, “and everything changed.”

As it dawned on Christa that no one would make her go to church on Sundays, she considered sleeping in. Her faith had been so strongly connected with her dad’s role in the church. Now what?

“I slowly realized that I was at critical crossroads in my walk with God,” Christa remembers. “I had never realized the need for my faith to be my own.”

At the same time, Christa struggled to find enjoyment or inspiration in her baking classes. She was bored. She began to doubt that her path would lead to a fulfilling career. Suddenly, everything that she had known about herself seemed to be up for grabs.

One Sunday, Christa and her roommate decided to try out some local churches, and they landed at City Alliance, a church committed to loving college students at both Penn and Lycoming Colleges. Soon she joined a small group, began to help plan and shop for the church’s monthly dinners, and befriended now former CCO staff members Nate and Bekka Morgan.  

Christa then switched her major to business management and discovered that a “secular” job could become a calling. Her summer internship at a sales and marketing company became a revelation.

“This small taste of the business world fueled a passion deep inside of me that I did not know that I had,” Christa says. “God began to show me that I can be a light for Him, even in a small office building in Harrisburg.”

This February, Christa will attend her third Jubilee conference, this time with CCO and City Alliance Church staff member Brandon Rathbun. All the while, she is gathering ideas for living out her faith in whatever small or large offices she finds herself in after college. 

“I would like to love others through management and choose grace over dictating requirements,” she says. “Through my work ethic and attitude, I want to be that manager that people come to, ask for help, and confide in.” 

Now a senior and nearing the end of her time at college and City Alliance, this is who Christa is: someone who wants to love others as God loves her. In every part of her life, she is looking for practical ways to do just that.