Many opportunities – take it from Secretary of State John F. Kerry:
“If I went back to college today, I think I would probably major in comparative religion, because that’s how integrated it is in everything that we are working on and deciding and thinking about today” – Secretary of State John Kerry, August 7, 2013
Where can I go with a Comparative Religion Major?
Comparative Religion Majors are globalists, with specific expertise as historians, ethicists, analysts of specific world regions and/or international comparativists, depending on their choice of concentration of courses in our program.
- Discussion of skills of Religion Majors and their applicability to jobs from the American Academy of Religion
- The current popularity of Study of Religion programs from a recent article, Newsweek Religious Studies
Interdisciplinary: Comparative Religion is the academic study of the significant ways in which religion and culture shape our world in history and today, including:
Global studies – Africa, America, Asia, Europe, Middle East
Cultural studies – art, architecture, literature, history, performing arts
Social studies – identity, community, conflict, peace
Behavioral studies – values, practices, ethical decision-making
The double-major option: Several of our Majors are double-majors with fields in the Sciences and Social Sciences. The skills Comparative Religion Majors master are vital:
- Being a Major in a Humanities discipline is synonymous with excellence in reading comprehension; accuracy and persuasion in oral and written communication; expertise in information literacy and research; skilled use of technology to perform, critically analyze, and present research and information; experience and leadership in project planning and teamwork.
- Being a Comparative Religion Major is, in addition to the Humanities skills, synonymous with excellence in knowing and analyzing global cultures and issues to meaningfully contribute to global solutions, understanding and managing diversity in the workplace, and engaging in ethical behavior and ethical decision-making at work and at home.
Scholarships and Grants
- Harriet Gilbert Davis Scholarship at Drew. Endowed in 1990 by her daughter, Catherine Davis Bridwell C’67, and Mrs. Davis’s family to be awarded to a woman with need, majoring in religion. Nomination by the Chair of the Religion department. (Note: Current Baldwin Honors, Civic or Governor’s School Scholars are not eligible.)
- Roothbert Fund Scholarships. Based in New York City. “Scholarships may only be applied to study at an accredited institution based in the United States [Drew is accredited]. The Fund seeks candidates who are `motivated by spiritual values’, and works to foster fellowship among them. . . .While the Fund does not emphasize any particular form of religious practice or worship, it seeks to provide support to persons motivated by spiritual values. The Fund has awarded grants to persons entering a wide range of careers. However, preference will be given to those who can satisfy high scholastic requirements and are considering careers in education.”
- The Herbert Scoville Jr. Peace Fellowship, “established in 1987, is a highly-competitive national fellowship program that provides college graduates with the opportunity to gain a Washington perspective on key issues of peace and security. Twice yearly, the Fellowship’s Board of Directors selects a group of outstanding individuals to spend six to nine months in Washington. Supported by a salary, the fellows serve as full-time junior staff members at the participating organization of their choice. The program also arranges meetings for the fellows with policy experts.” The competition is open to seniors.
- Other prestigious awards – Information on the Fulbright Scholarship, Mellon Fellowship, Goldwater Scholarship, Marshall Scholarship, Rhodes Scholarship, Beinecke Brothers Scholarship and others is on a webpage put together by Professor Louis Hamilton, Student Scholarships and Grants Coordinator, and former SSG Coordinator Professor Erik Anderson, here.
Overseas Study Opportunities
- American Institute of Indian Studies – Language study in India for summer, fall semester, or academic year; some languages and programs do not require prior study of the language, but some do; check details on the website. Current flyers for AIIS Language Study in India may be accessed here. (Click on Download Details for Summer Programs, Academic Year Programs, and/or One Semester Programs.)
- Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship – The Gilman Scholarship Program offers awards for undergraduate study abroad and was established by the International Academic Opportunity Act of 2000. This scholarship provides awards for U.S. undergraduate students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two-year or four-year college or university to participate in study abroad programs worldwide.
- Boren Scholarship Awards for International Study – Boren Scholarships provide American undergraduate students with the resources and encouragement they need to acquire skills and experiences in areas of the world critical to the future security of our nation, in exchange for their commitment to seek work in the federal government.
- Critical Language Scholarship Program – A program of United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program will offer intensive summer language institutes overseas in thirteen critical need foreign languages. NEWS FLASH! Congratulations to Eliza Mauhs-Pugh (’13) for winning a Critical Language Program scholarship to study Arabic in Tangier! Read her excellent blog here.
- Freeman-ASIA provides scholarships for U.S. undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia.
- American Medical Association Ethics Group Internship Program, Chicago
- The Asia Society, New York City
- Drew University Sayles Internship Award – for funding
- DrewLink Internship and Job Database
- The Elie Wiesel Foundation Prize in Ethics Essay Contest – Open to full-time Juniors and Seniors; cash prize, internship and publication opportunities
- Huffpost – many positions in NYC, such as the intro-level Community Apprentice Program
- Humanity in Action Fellowship – “Humanity in Action Fellowship programs will take place in the summer of 2014 in Amsterdam, Berlin, Copenhagen, Paris and Warsaw. The 2014 program dates for participants from the United States are May 26 – June 30, 2014. Intensive and demanding, the Humanity in Action Fellowship programs bring together international groups of college students and recent graduates to explore national histories of discrimination and resistance, as well as examples of issues affecting different minority groups today.”
- Idealist – online listing of diverse internship opportunities
- Metropolitan Museum of Art (including the Cloisters Museum), New York City
- The Newark Museum, Newark NJ
- The Pluralism Project, Harvard University
- Public Religion Research Institute, Washington, D.C.
- Rubin Museum of Art, New York City. NEWS FLASH! Comp Rel Minor Lina Estrada is currently (2014) performing an internship at the Rubin
- Tanenbaum, New York City. Internships in a variety of fields, including Workplace, Education, Health Care, and Conflict Resolution
- US Commission on International Religious Freedom, Washington, DC. “The Commission was created by the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 to monitor the status of freedom of thought, conscience, and religion or belief abroad, as defined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and related international instruments, and to give independent policy recommendations to the President, Secretary of State, and Congress.”
- WATER Internships – Feminists in Religion, Silver Spring MD
Fields in Which Our Majors Are Currently Employed:
Drew Liberal Arts trains students in critical thinking and skills that are widely applicable, providing students with many choices
- Arts (Examples: majors who are engaged in Theatre – Performance and Management and Photography)
- Business (Examples: Two of our female majors own their own businesses, Dolma Fair Trade and Organic Body Sculpting; in addition, one major just earned her M.B.A. and is Consulting; one major is a Project Manager for a pharmaceutical company)
- Communications (Talk to Michael Bressman C’06, in Drew’s Communications Dept.!)
- Counseling (Examples: majors who are performing School Counseling)
- Development-Institutional (Talk to John Holden C’98, Director of Alumni/ae Giving in Drew’s University Advancement Office!)
- Development-International (Example: a major who was a Presidential Intern at University of Cairo and now a Program Manager with an international development company)
- Education/Teaching (Example: NEWS FLASH! Read Prof. Tim Marquis‘s – CLA 2000 – just published, acclaimed study of Paul, Transient Apostle: Paul, Travel and the Rhetoric of Empire, Yale Univ Press 2013)
- Ethical Leadership (Example: a major who continued his education at our own Drew Theological School)
- Event Planning/Management (Examples: a major who is performing Event Planning at Clinton Global Initiatives in NYC; a major who is the Event Coordinator for The Grouber Foundation at Yale University)
- Humanitarian Aid & Human Rights (Examples: majors who are directors or program coordinators at Physicians for Human Rights; Satellite Sentinel Project; Harvard Humanitarian Initiative; Friends of Africa International; Habitat for Humanity)
- Human Resources (Example: a major who works in HR at an architectural firm)
- Journalism (Example: a major who is Editor of an online journal)
- Law (Example: a major who is a paralegal)
- Public Relations (Example: a major who is the Development and Finance Officer of a non-profit organization)
- Retail Sales Specialist/Store Supervisor (Examples: majors employed in technology, women’s apparel, bookstore)
- Social Work (Example: a major who is performing family counseling)
- Teaching (Examples: majors who teach at Secondary, University, Special Education levels) – one of our majors has participated in the Teach for America program
- Several of our current Majors and Minors are going into Medicine.
- Current majors know that if they are interested in any of these fields we will put them in touch with these graduates.