Sterling College announces commencement speaker

Sterling College announces commencement speaker
Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Paul Brandes ’11, chaplain and associate vice president for student life and church relations, will be the speaker for the 2021 Sterling College Commencement ceremony. The ceremony will honor the Class of 2020 and the Class of 2021 and will take place on Saturday, May 15, at 9:45 a.m. on East Cooper Lawn on the Sterling College campus. 

Brandes has served as Sterling’s chaplain since 2019 and now oversees the diversity committee, church relations and the Freeman Lecture Series in addition to continuing to oversee the work of spiritual life on campus. He previously served as the executive pastor for Christ Community Church’s Brookside campus in Kansas City, Mo. 

“Graduating from college is an incredible accomplishment, and a commencement ceremony is an incredible opportunity to honor those who have worked so hard to achieve that goal. I could not be more excited to serve as commencement speaker at my alma mater. This past year has been difficult, and my aim is to craft a speech that speaks to our unique moment and the challenges these classes have navigated to be able to cross the stage to celebrate their accomplishments,” said Brandes.

Brandes holds a master of divinity in Pastoral Studies from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and a bachelor’s degree in Religion and Philosophy from Sterling College. Brandes and his wife, Ashley (Earle) ’09 have three sons, Bevyn, Owen and Ethan.

Sterling College is a Christ-centered, four-year college located in Sterling, Kansas, with a mission to develop creative and thoughtful leaders who understand a maturing Christian faith. For more information, visit