Just call him Maupin.
Ian Maupin, freshman economics and philosophy double major, prefers to go by his last name.
“It connects me to home,” he said. “It connects me to my family, which is something that I think our culture has lost. We know everyone by our first names, so it’s sort of this piece of etiquette. It used to be you didn’t call anyone by their first name unless you were really good friends.”
Hailing from St. Louis, Maupin is a long way from home. He learned about Union through his involvement in Impact 360, a dual enrollment program connected to the university.
When he visited during Scholar’s Weekend, he said he was impressed with the strong academics and Christian focus of the university evident in every academic subject.
“They talked not just about Christian learning, but learning Christianly,” he said.
After studying economics and philosophy here, Maupin hopes to go on to earn his masters and teach economics. He plans on using his knowledge of philosophy to focus on the theoretical aspect of economics.
Although he is freshman class treasurer and a member of the debate team, his favorite part of Union has been the Honors Program, thanks to his seminar professor, Scott Huelin, and the thought-provoking books required for the class. He especially liked The Abolition of Man by C.S. Lewis, one of his favorite authors and theologians.
A voracious reader, he especially enjoys the Ender’s Game books, a science-fiction series about a boy, Ender Wiggin, who is tricked into wiping out an alien race, then seeks to restore it with the one remaining pupa.
“What really is great about it is just the way that [Wiggin] is able to come in and bring such healing to this family,” he said. “It’s really about his relationship with this one family on this planet and how he’s about to heal them and their broken relationships as well as just the vision for the species which is very different from our own.”
Union has given Maupin a similar missional outlook. Through discussions with students and faculty, he has learned the value of Christian relationships and how to live as an “alien” Christian.
“Rod Dreher has this thing he calls the ‘Benedict Option,’ which is a call Christians to re-evaluate how they live in the world and return to a semi-monastic sort of lifestyle in some way or another,” he said. “He doesn’t give specific ways to do that, but he talks about how we need to really rethink how we live in the world…I’ve just learned a good bit about that.”