Alumni Hero–Elisha Kossove

October 2021

“InterVarsity helped me grow in my faith so much... I wanted to keep doing that for other people. And I just love InterVarsity!” ~Elisha Kossove

The InterVarsity Alumni Association is thrilled to recognize Elisha Kossove (Penn State Harrisburg, 2019) as our next Alumni Hero! This honor is bestowed on alumni who demonstrate a personal commitment to accelerating InterVarsity’s mission on campus through giving, advocacy, prayer, and service.

Since his days as a student at Penn State Harrisburg, Elisha has consistently demonstrated one vital characteristic: a simple willingness to help with a felt need. Whether in worship leading, in discipleship, or as chapter president, Elisha was willing to invest his skills to further ministry on campus.

These last two years as a volunteer with his alma mater, Elisha has continued to do that one simple thing: seek out need and invest himself. When the fall conference worship band was short a guitarist, Elisha offered his musical skills. When the chapter needed funding for an event, he gladly donated. And when a global pandemic upset normal rhythms while their campus staff was on sabbatical, Elisha offered guidance and encouragement as the chapter transitioned their ministry online.

Liz Berg, Elisha’s supervising staff, shared a story illustrating the far-reaching impact of this willingness. In the fall of 2020, Liz needed someone to lead a student apprenticeship cohort. Elisha, of course, was more than willing to step in. During one meeting, a student shared her nervousness about making invitations to her friends to join a one-week Bible study. Elisha responded by empowering her to take the risk; encouraging her to lean on her partner and offering up space for a debrief of the experience after the group met. She and her partner made their invitations, and one year later this “one-week Bible study” now has 20 people exploring the Bible every week, many of whom don’t yet know Jesus.

Liz continued, “Elisha embodies a holistic picture of how an alumnus can give back. Not just monetarily or by praying from time to time but by taking the whole chapter under his wing and saying, ‘I really want to see God continue to work at Penn State Harrisburg and I want to be a part of that.’”

When asked what encouragement he would offer other alumni considering a volunteer role, Elisha said, “Just do it! … Volunteer according to your strengths. Many campuses need volunteers… they’ll use you.”

Ultimately, it isn’t the event, the skillset needed, or even the measurable outcome that makes a hero. It’s simply the willingness to offer help where help is needed. Thank you, Elisha, for your willingness to serve Jesus through Penn State Harrisburg and InterVarsity. We are proud to name you as an Alumni Hero!

Would you like to nominate someone to be an Alumni Hero? Click here to nominate the hero you know!

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