Not Brothers, Just Twins: How Cousins Came to Experience Strong Community at Grace
May 19, 2004, Max Boruvka was born at 5:19 p.m. in Akron, Ohio. Just five hours later, in Rochester, New York, along came his cousin, Bennett Utter. A year and a half later, the Utter family moved 10 miles down the road from Boruvka’s house, and the cousins have been friends ever since. From extreme sports as kids to youth group as teenagers, the “twin cousins” have not known life without the other — and their college experience is no exception.
Boruvka and Utter could tell story after story of their elementary school days together. “We did just about every extreme sport together,” said Boruvka. “From mountain biking to soccer, longboarding to basketball and skiing to rip sticking — you name it, we’ve probably tried it.”
And they’re sure to throw in a story or two about “Maximum Shots,” Boruvka’s trick shot YouTube channel where the duo would attempt trick shots with everything from basketballs to airsoft guns.
Now freshmen at Grace, Boruvka and Utter enjoy participating in the newly established Grace Outdoors club, a group that encourages students to enjoy God’s creation through mountain biking, skiing, canoeing, hiking and camping outings while cultivating a strong community.
Even when the group isn’t holding events, the twin cousins are finding ways to adventure on their own. Whether it be competing on the ultimate frisbee team, longboarding in The Village or strumming a tune at open mic night, Boruvka and Utter have quickly found Grace to be home away from home.
“When I began the college search, I always got the advice, ‘Go to a place that feels most like home,’” said Boruvka. ”And Grace felt like home because of the biking trails, the lake and most importantly, the people.”
For Boruvka, the four hours it takes to get home from Grace was longer than he had hoped for, but after an extensive search evaluating schools of all kinds, he knew Grace was the right place for him. He committed in November of his senior year, completely unaware that Utter would follow in his footsteps.
“I was planning on going to a public university with the hope of saving some money,” said Utter. “But the summer after my senior year, I felt a nudge from the Lord to go somewhere I could grow in my faith and my education.”
That’s when he began to consider Grace. Racing the clock to get a spot for the fall semester, Utter decided on Grace in mid-July without stepping foot on campus.
The cousins are both teachers-in-training: Boruvka studying elementary education and Utter pursuing math education. Suffice to say, the twin cousins are thriving in their studies, the Christian community, and the opportunities to be outdoors.
“Thriving at Grace is all about being involved in a strong community and having friends you can talk to,” said Utter, noting the Bible study they’ve been enjoying with several other guys on campus.
“I’d have to agree,” Boruvka quickly chimed in. “The strong community is the best part of Grace.”
To learn more about what our Christian community looks like, read this blog!