Andrew Spencer, a Texas native, attended high school in rural Michigan where he graduated with a small class of 160 students. Early on, Andrew did not have a support system to enable him to thrive in his academic career and was discouraged by voices telling him that his future would be confined to the farm town. He wanted a life where he could make a different type of impact on the world and knew it was possible.
After high school, when Andrew discovered an opportunity to work with at-risk teens at a Boarding School, he immediately packed his belongings and moved to Richmond, Indiana. This was a pivotal decision that introduced him to a group of people who believed that circumstances do not define people. This experience ultimately led him to pursue college at Purdue University. Today, Andrew can proudly say that he graduated from Purdue University in December 2019 with a Major in Organizational Leadership, a Minor in Design and Innovation, and a Certificate in Entrepreneurship, met his wife, bought a house, had a son, and started his post-grad career at Ascend through Orr Fellowship.
Andrew learned about Orr through an Orr Fellowship presentation at Purdue and knew that this opportunity would align with his passion for entrepreneurship. Through Orr Fellowship’s network and continued learning, it seemed like a guaranteed way to continue investing in himself and start down the path of entrepreneurship.
Approaching his first year anniversary as an Orr Fellow, Andrew has been highly involved with the Diversity & Inclusion Team. This has given him the opportunity to learn new perspectives from a group that advocates for themselves and others. Andrew only wishes that he had this opportunity earlier in life. He appreciates that through Orr Fellowship he can connect with Fellows on personal experiences, such as what it means to be black in America.
He shared the importance of maintaining a sense of possibility in your head and in your heart. There is no better example of someone who is living those words today than Andrew. He continues to stay in a place of humility while realizing the unique value-add that he can bring to Ascend and Orr Fellowship.
He ended the conversation with a piece of advice, “Live to dream and live to grow. When you get there there is always more.” We can’t wait to see what else is in store for Andrew!
Thank you so much for sharing #yOrrStory!
Still figuring out #yOrrStory? Don’t miss out on the opportunity to apply your previous experiences and see where they take you! Apply to Orr Fellowship for the ultimate 2-year post-graduate experience that continues to provide young professionals with the tools, experiences, and jobs that they need to spell out a truly successful career.