Student Feature: Natalie Kabazzi
Student Stories

Student Feature: Natalie Kabazzi

Natalie Kabazzi

June 28, 2024

You may recognize this C7 student from The Excel College Podcast! (For those of you that are new to Excel, our classes are numbered by cohort, so "C7" is Cohort 7.) Natalie Kabazzi is originally from Northern Virginia, and moved here in the Fall of 2022. A former student of Classical Conversations, Natalie noticed the similar vision and heart of education in Excel College when she visited and knew in her heart that this is where she wanted to continue her education. Coming from a strong family-oriented home, the community was a huge reason she fell in love with the college and the people. 

“I love being surrounded by people who are just as on fire for the Lord as I am,” Natalie said. “Excel is a community where iron sharpens iron and no one is left behind. I’ve never connected with people outside of my family like I have with those within the Excel community.”

Since moving here, Natalie has increasingly become more involved in life here at Excel, and actually carries out her practicum in Community and Program Development with Excel College. What exactly does Community and Program Development look like with Excel? 

“[For] community development, I am the house captain (similar to an R.A.) of the Gray House, one of the three women’s homes currently on campus. That job is by far one of my favorites. I love that I get to be a servant leader and a friend at the same time! When it comes to program development, I am also a teaching assistant and grader for the Core, an Arts and Activities teacher with the Excel Academy, and a Classical Conversations Challenge I director. Day to day, my practicum looks like grading assignments, reading books, planning lessons, leading house meetings, answering questions, going to meetings, and receiving mentorship from other amazing leaders.” 

Directing a Challenge program for Classical Conversations at 20 years old is a huge accomplishment, and one in which Natalie excels. Challenge directing involves tutoring middle or high school aged students on six subjects once a week, keeping in touch with parents, and coordinating events for the students.

In her almost two years at Excel, Natalie has seen the Lord at work in herself and those around her. “Learning to hear from the Lord, and that everyone hears Him differently, was huge! People here have real relationships with God - it isn’t just about following the rules to get into heaven.” Now, she says, she isn’t afraid to get to know Him, and knows that He actually desires to get to know her as a friend, and cares about all the little things - like her favorite color (It’s pink, by the way!).

One of Natalie’s dreams is to have a healthy marriage and family, and she’s found that one step towards that is diving into discipleship. In fact, her favorite part of her practicum is the discipleship aspect of being a House Captain! “This, I feel, is very important when it comes to building a life. As a woman who would like to be a mother one day, I realize that parenting is intertwined with discipleship. As a Christian parent, it's important to ‘train up a child in the way he should go’ not just through words, but also through deeds. 

“Since coming here, I’ve learned that leadership and discipleship are heavily based on action. Oftentimes, people notice what you do much more than what you say, thus, a good leader has a life that is worth copying.” Natalie hopes to continue learning all she can about discipleship and community during her time at Excel!

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