FlipSide Face

FlipSide Face

by Emily BeckmannStaff Writer

Junior Nels Dovre, a music education major originally from Huxley, Iowa, recently returned to the U.S. after volunteering full-time for a year as part of a seven-person missionary team in Denmark through the Danish organization Indre Mission.

“I lived out of my giant backpack and guitar case and got paid $85 a month,” Dovre said. “The whole experience was a wonderful lesson in necessity. I grew to love the country and people there. It was an experience that has truly changed me.”

Dovre had many different missionary experiences while in Denmark.

“We traveled to a different area every week, staying either with a family or in a boarding school,” Dovre said. “This experience living inside the Danish culture truly shaped my experience and allowed me to have many deep relationships.”

Senior Erik Lickiss, Dovre’s roommate, was not surprised when Dovre decided to take the trip to Denmark.

“Nels is a one-of-a-kind man,” Lickiss said. “Sure he has dreads and an obscenely loud voice and cough, but Nels is a true man of God. He is a man of confidence, advice, trust and honor, someone who everyone needs to meet and get to know.”

Dovre’s love for music played a large role during the mission trip. Dovre and his team performed approximately 12 electric concerts each week as well as spoke in several different classrooms.

“Our first week in Denmark we recorded the CD we would be selling for the rest of our tour,” Dovre said. “Being in the studio while dealing with jet lag, culture shock and a new profound feeling of separation from loved ones was quite the experience.”

Whether playing one of the seven instruments that he knows how to play or sharing his vocal performance skills, Dovre has always been drawn to music.

“Music has a unique power for profound communication,” Dovre said. “I have appreciated and understood this since early childhood.”

Dovre took with him many experiences from Denmark, but one aspect that stood out to him were the relationships that he created. Therefore, he offers the following advice:

“If your relationships are in the dumps, you’re in the dumps,” Dovre said. “The greatest achievement you can have in life is to care for those with whom you spend time. You don’t need an education, experience abroad or a diploma to do this. You just have to decide to put energy into someone other than yourself.”