Congratulations to our graduate alumni

Congratulations to two of our graduate alumni who recently finished their Ph.D.s!

 Dr. Ryan Strickler graduated from Macquarie University in Australia. His dissertation was titled “Coping with Crisis: Invasion, Defeat, and Apocalyptic Discourse in Seventh-Century Byzantium”. He now serves as a fixed-term lecturer in Classics and Ancient History at the University of Queensland.

 Dr. Megan Leverage earned her PhD in American Religious History from Florida State University. Her dissertation was titled “‘Sacred Reality’: Transhumanism in American Religious History”. She is currently working as a full-time lecturer in the Comparative Cultural Studies Department at Northern Arizona University.

Congratulations to both! We look forward to seeing their future research and hearing more about their teaching!

Kudos to Dr. Wilson

Brian C. Wilson has written a new book scheduled to be released in August. “John E. Fetzer and the Quest for the New Age,” is being published by Wayne State University Press as part of the Great Lakes Books Series. The book follows the spiritual sojourn of Fetzer, a Michigan business tycoon born in 1901 who lived most of his life in Kalamazoo. Fetzer parlayed his first radio station into extensive holdings in broadcasting and other enterprises. Dr. Wilson's previous books include “Dr. John Harvey Kellogg and the Religion of Biologic Living” and “Yankees in Michigan.”

Congratulations!

Congratulations to Dr. Covell, department chair, on being awarded the University's highest award for service. Dr. Covell has served as department chair for seven years and before that was the founding director of the Soga Japan Center. The award will be given at this year's Convocation to be held on Sept. 14 at 11 a.m. in the Bernhard Center.

Alumni news

Congratulations to Charlie Bouverette who is the well-deserved recipient of the departmental Teaching Effectiveness and Graduate Student Leadership and Service Awards. In the fall, Charlie will be attending University of Minnesota’s School of Social Work to pursue a second master’s degree in clinical social work specializing in American Indian reservation populations. Charlie is one of five recipients who were selected to receive full tuition in conjunction with the Diversity of Views and Experiences (DOVE) Fellowship at University of Minnesota. She was also awarded supplemental fellowships including Graduate Council Teaching Fellowship, Graduate School Summer Fellowship and Clinical Scholars Award for her work in minority health.

The 2019 Japanese Religion and Culture Study Abroad Seminar

The 2019 Japanese Religion and Culture Study Abroad Seminar is on again! See the attached flyer for more info or contact Dr. Covell if you want to go or know someone who might be interested. We take students from other schools who want a unique experience in Japan. If you have friends or family studying elsewhere, bring them with you! This year we split the program into two halves to make more affordable options. The first half is the original two-week three-credit hour course that centers around the home base Zojoji in downtown Tokyo. The second part includes Kyoto, Hiroshima and Miyajima.

4 + 1 Program with Kalamazoo College

The Department of Comparative Religion is pleased to announce the creation of a 4+1 graduate program with the Department of Religion at Kalamazoo College. Under the program students majoring in religion at Kalamazoo College will be able to transfer up to 12 credit hours of work towards their master's degree in comparative religion. The first students to take advantage of the program will begin their graduate studies at WMU in 2018. For questions, please contact the graduate advisor Dr. Brian Wilson.

Study religion at WMU

Do you want to know more about religion, the role and significance of religion in societies and the ways in which academics think about and analyze religion? Areas of study in Western Michigan University's Department of Comparative Religion provide knowledge and skills relevant to many careers and professions.

There are few things more important to study today than religion

Don't take our word for it, just listen to the US Secretary of State John Kerry: "I often say that if I headed back to college today, I would major in comparative religions rather than political science." This is a great read.

Scholarships available

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