Written by Sophie Thibodeaux // Photo by Macy Cox
As students at Harding grow and evolve in their spiritual and professional journey, many find themselves taking up unexpected projects they never would have imagined before.
Junior Bible and Ministry major Courtney Eby is the founder of The Brek Boss, a small business start-up that encourages meaningful and intentional conversations while enjoying delicious baked goods and treats.
During her sophomore year, Eby said she decided to add a business minor and met with different professors in the College of Business Administration to find her passion and where God was leading her. Knowing she didn’t want to work in a church, Eby wanted to find a way to fuse business and ministry together in a meaningful way. She discovered this through baking and cooking.
“I love cooking,” Eby said. “Anything in the kitchen, that’s my thing.”
It was important to Eby that bringing people together and establishing heartfelt connections was at the heart of her business.
“The most important thing in bringing people together for a conversation and relationship is food,” Eby said. “You meet at a table, you have a conversation, and I really want that.”
After talking to a few of her friends about a potential plan, she originally thought it best to save her business for after college. After more consideration, she realized the present was the most advantageous opportunity.
Courtney and her friend, senior marketing major Abbi Reece, created their vision, took it to the Waldron Center and asked what needed to be done to make it happen.
“I worked really closely with the Waldron Center with Dr. [Jon] Wood, Caleb Young and Mike Oliver, and I was there hours and hours on end every single week, very passionate about this vision of creating The Brek Boss,” Eby said.
Reece credited Eby as being the brains behind the business.
“I mainly helped her with design ideas and such,” Reece said.
The first launch of their business was at Kilts and Coffee, an event put on last semester by Beats and Eats and Arts and Life. Heather Kemper, director of Alumni and Parent Relations, reached out to her and asked if she wanted a booth at the event.
“I made eight dozen rolls, and I only had six left by the end of it,” Eby said. “The most important thing about that was meeting people”.
Young, an assistant in the Waldron Center, said he enjoys seeing people from different majors take advantage of the Waldron Center.
“They come here, they get plugged into the Waldron Center and they do Christmas and spring markets and pop-up shops,” Young said. “It’s been cool to see how a lot of the student entrepreneurs come from the most random departments: Bible majors, history majors and really all over the map, and that’s been really cool to see.”
Eby continues to work at events and pop-up shops at locations such as the Soda Jerk and the Waldron Center. She alternates and tests different flavors for cinnamon rolls and other treats to have a variety of choices, continuing to find her place in the community and bringing people together through food.