Youth pastor’s skills at play in new RSC role


The Sunflower

Six months ago Brian Potillo was a youth pastor at Valley Center. He had about 10 teenagers in his group who he taught the gospel to every week. Now Potillo has taken a job as the Rhatigan Student Center as the Manager of Facilities and Setup Crew.

Potillo said part of his new job is to supervise the building managers, who are students, to get rooms ready for events in various places such as the RSC, Marcus Welcome Center and the CAC Theater. He said that this part of his job is just like his old one, where he still gets to work with students, but in a different capacity.

“I love being here, and I enjoy working with students,” Potillo said. “The ones I work with are obviously older than the ones I use to have in my group, who were mostly high school students, but I still enjoy it.”

After serving 15 years in youth ministry, and Potillo said he would often tease people that this was his way of reliving teenage years.

“I did not grow up in a church, and when I was a teenager, I wasn’t a Christian,” said Potillo. “At that time, it wasn’t anything my friends and I were into, but it was only when I met my wife, where I started being active in my faith. I started attending church and realized what I missed out on in youth groups.”

With his youngest son graduating high school this year, Potillo felt that it was time for a career change, but he had no idea what he wanted to change to. He said he would often talk to his wife about wanting to work at a university, where he could still work with students but who were just a little bit older.

Potillo said one day he simply stumbled across a job opening for his current position online, and read it to his wife.

“She said the job was worth checking out, since I thought that’s where I’d like to go,” Potillo said. “And what better campus to go to then Wichita State, where I met my wife? So, I came out here for an interview and one thing lead to another. I got the job.”

He thinks what caught their was his knowledge of media while he was in youth ministry.

He said he often worked with projectors and sound systems, but used them in a different way than they were used here.

“In the past six months I definitely got a lot of technological knowledge, and learning to work on the fly,” said Potillo. “It’s been also very interesting to see how many events come through here. It doesn’t seem like that busy of a place, but at times it’s very busy. Problems may also suddenly arise, which helps keeps us on our toes, but learning on fly to fix problems is definitely part of the job.”

His resignation from youth ministry came earlier than he thought. Potillo’s initial plan was to resign in May, about the time his son would graduate from high school, but the opportunity came early and he decided to take it.

Despite an early resignation, Potillo continued to work part-time at his old job up until January, where they found someone to replace his position. He still volunteers there every Wednesday night to help out his new replacement and continuing his passion of working with teenagers.

“I always joke around saying God has a sense of humor, and if you tell him your plans, he’ll laugh at you and change them,” Potillo said. “I like my job here, being a Shocker and working with a good bunch of people.”