“At Juniata, the religious studies professors bring unique perspectives and areas of expertise. They offer more fascinating courses than I could possibly fit into my schedule.”
—Emily Parker ’18
Religious Studies and Spanish/Hispanic Cultures
A Distinct Experience
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Juniata provides opportunities for undergraduate research in biblical studies, Eastern religions, and many other topics, to help you grasp the history and methods of the academic study of religion. Students even conduct research on religion and technology.
In addition to a basic grounding in faith, history, and cultural values, explore ways to better understand how religion affects the modern world. Professor Susan Prill leads annual trips to Hindu temples and the Sikh Gurdwara near Pittsburgh, and Professor Braxton takes his Bring Out Your Dead class on a field trip to the preparation room of a local funeral home to get a closer look at the processes of death in America.
Juniata organizes its religion courses to serve students who are curious about spirituality yet may or may not subscribe to an organized religion or denomination.
Our recent graduates are employed by the Institute of International Education, the French Ministry of Education, the American Council for International Education, and several private and public secondary schools. They land careers in industry, education, government, and public interest. Others are attending graduate school at places like Georgetown University and Rochester Institute of Technology. Several have been awarded Fulbright Fellowships to study or work abroad.
- Stephanie Finamore ‘14
- is pursuing a master’s of divinity degree at Louisville Seminary in Louisville, Ky.
- Katie Shoemaker ‘16
- is currently enrolled at Penn State University’s Schoolof Medicine.
- Britnee Shope ‘17
- is employed as a mental health technician at Universal Community Behavioral Health in Three Springs, Pa.
- Becca Strohm ‘13
- is employed through the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, where she instructs K-12 students in restoring Portland’s watersheds with Green Team, in Portland, Ore.
- Shayna Yeates ‘15
- is employed as a research analyst for Dispute Dynamics in Philadelphia. Shayna researches and consults on legal strategies, jury selection, jury dynamics, and related topics.
In the Religious Studies department, 100 percent of faculty have earned Ph.D.s, and they serve, first and foremost, as professors. But, they also have widely varied experience. One speaks and writes Hindi, Punjabi, and Sanskrit. Another is a member of the Catholic Biblical Association.
“I love studying religion at Juniata because the individualized attention of my professors helps me gain different perspectives on any subject.”
—Matthew Colabella ’18
Field Trips: From mortuaries to Indian temples, Juniata students accompany faculty to a variety of religion-associated sites and gain understanding along the way.
Add the study of religion to another POE: For a secondary emphasis in religion, take a minimum of six religion courses. At least two of these courses must be at the 300 or 400 level and at least two must be in non-western religious traditions.
Student Organization: Students can also join the Religious Studies Club, which hosts movie nights and an annual excursion.
Undergraduate Research: Conduct research in a topic of your choosing with the guidance of a faculty member. Then, present at conferences—like Juniata’s Liberal Arts Symposium, the National Conferences for Undergraduates, or seminars/workshops specific to religious studies. Recent examples: Adam Caraballo ’15, Brittni Devlin ’15, Emily Krause ’15, Shannon Manley ’15, and Forest Miller ’15, “Assessment of Violent Religious Videos, Secular Violent Videos, and Secular Non-Violent Videos by Christians and Non-Christians;” Kenyatta Thompson ’14, “Death Anxiety in Relation to Religiosity.”