Essays about the disconnect between white Christians and the struggles of marginalized people, and prejudiced standards of beauty, won the 2018 Eddy Mabry Diversity Award.
New faces in religion department
New to the religion department in 2016-17 are instructor Emily Kahm and faculty assistant Christina Sanders-Ring.
Kahm joins Augustana after two years as director of faith formation for a Dubuque, Iowa, Catholic church and (concurrently) five years of doctoral work in religions and theological studies at Iliff School of Theology and the University of Denver.
“If all goes well, on February 24 I will finally earn the title of doctor!” she said.
Kahm considers herself to be a practical theologian studying lived religion, particularly religious sexuality education and religious education in Catholic contexts. She is currently working on a project involving young adult women who were reared Catholic and how their sex education experience affects their current relationship decisions.
She is impressed by Augustana students, who are “conscientious, curious, discerning, and kind” and have demonstrated enthusiasm for learning more about “the long-standing questions that religiosity tries to address”.
Kahm spends her free time knitting, crocheting, and watching video game Let’s-Plays; she and her spouse live with two pet bunnies, Exodus and Calliope, and their new dog, Bosco.
Sanders-Ring replaces long-time Old Main secretary Linda Anderson who retired in December. The post is her first full-time “grown-up job” since returning to college as a full-time non-traditional student in 2011.
She has a bachelor’s in English from Western Illinois University QC and is working toward a graduate degree in instructional design. She feels great about the transition into Augustana culture and her new job, and she’s very fond of “her” faculty members, describing them as “brilliant, accessible, personable and humble.”
Her free time is generally occupied by Quad Cities area community theatre projects, behind the scenes as a stage manager or assistant director for a local Shakespeare/verse troupe or—more recently—acting, taking ensemble roles in "Love’s Labour’s Lost" and "Flowers for Algernon," and the role of Truvy Jones in "Steel Magnolias."
She lives in Rock Island with her husband Aaron, their teenage kids, and a couple of grouchy old men (disguised as a dog and a cat).