Jerry Clum first visited Cornerstone University, which he knew as Grand Rapids Baptist Bible College, in the 1960s when his grandfather would let him tag along to evening classes. Jerry’s grandfather, Victor Clum, attended Wealthy Street Baptist College when it was just a Bible institute with a few classrooms in downtown Grand Rapids.
“I know he attended classes there and was instrumental in getting the school started,” says Jerry. “A few years later, I think between 1949 to 1951, his daughter—my aunt Marjorie Clum—also attended there.”
After returning from Vietnam, Jerry enrolled at CU during August 1969, making him the third generation to attend the school. During his time there, he met his wife, Nancy (Cobb), who was also studying at the college. Not long after, the young couple married. But, the family legacy of attending CU didn’t end with them.
Almost 50 years later, not only did Jerry’s son, Shane Clum (B.A. ’00), receive his Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from CU, but his granddaughter, Makayla Clum (B.A. ’19), is currently in her third year, studying elementary education and running for the school’s track team.
Makayla didn’t discover the extent of her family’s relationship to the school until after she signed with the track team. Signing made her not only the fifth generation on the Clum’s side to attend the college, but also the fourth generation on her mother Angela (Phebus) Clum’s side.
“It’s really cool to know that my great-great grandpa could’ve been someone who helped start this school. I love it here,” says Makayla.
Looking back at how God’s brought his family to CU, Jerry says the school has influenced them to live for God and to serve Him. It makes him proud to have watched so many generations of his family attend the same Christian college.
About the Clums
Jerry Clum (CU ’69-71) is a third-generation Cornerstone student who attended for two years. The 70-year-old resides in McBain, Mich., with his wife, Nancy, where he’s currently enjoying partial retirement.
Makayla Clum (B.A. ’19), granddaughter of Jerry Clum, is a fifth-generation Cornerstone student. She runs track and is currently studying elementary education.
Shane Clum (B.A. ’00), son of Jerry Clum, is a fourth-generation Cornerstone student. He studied business administration, works with Tree-Lok, LLC and resides in Rockford, Mich., with his family.