Why did you major in Religious Studies?
I've always been interested in the effect of art and music, as well as architecture and costuming, on the religious experience.
What was your senior thesis?
"Confronting Gender Exclusion in the Catholic Church with Iconography of the Virgin Mary" - With this essay I investigated how religions, even the most deeply rooted beliefs and traditions, are subject to their living visual culture.
Where are you today, and how has your degree in Religious Studies shaped your future path?
I'm currently an MFA graduate student at the University of Kansas with a focus in Printmaking. My senior essay focused on contemporary artists working in iconographic traditions who effect real change in their communities through art. Religious Studies at Stanford helped give me the historical, theoretical, and courageous backbone I needed to pursue a studio art practice for myself and my communities.
Why should students today consider Religious Studies today?
Studying religion is one lens with which to study people, systems, language, the body, economies, architecture, art, music, and more. Students can expect challenge to their assumptions, as well as a thrilling ability to understand contemporary practice and beliefs in ancient contexts.