The mission of The Center for Religion and Global Citizenry is to increase UW-Madison students’ religious literacy and their facility for communicating across boundaries of faith so that they may function effectively as citizens of a religiously diverse world.
The Center was established in August of 2017 after the closing of the Lubar Institute for the Study of Abrahamic Religions in June of 2016. We hope to grow to become the hub for discussion of religious pluralism on the UW-Madison Campus and in the greater Madison community. With several different programs functioning in cooperation, the Center serves the undergraduate and graduate student population as well as faculty, staff, and community members.
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The Interfaith Fellows Program
The Interfaith Fellows Program trains up to 25 undergraduate students to become more knowledgeable about different religious traditions and more skilled at communicating with people from other religious backgrounds. We want to equip our fellows so that they can play an important part in working out the mechanics of religious pluralism and interfaith discourse within civil society. We see our fellows becoming an interfaith avant-garde who might serve as leaders in an ever increasingly interconnected global world. We seek to provide them, and the other students whom they involve in campus interfaith events and programming, with the knowledge and skills to surmount the barriers of religious difference and to become interfaith leaders in whatever career trajectories the future might hold for them.
During their yearlong fellowship the fellows will:
- Honor their fellow students’ religious background, culture, and values, and respect their otherness.
- Approach different religious traditions both intellectually and experientially.
- Explore, interpret, and understand different religious ideas, acts, and practices towards social justice.
- Become more self-aware of their own religious beliefs and values.
- Gain awareness of major religious traditions and their crucial role in global developments.
- Identify additional opportunities for interfaith engagement that would help sustain the CRGC’s efforts towards more interfaith awareness and collaboration on campus.
- Coordinate on-campus events to bring interfaith conversations to the wider public.
- Write about their experiences in the group or in other interfaith contexts in blog posts.
The deadline to apply for the 2020-2021 fellowship program has now passed. The 2021-2022 application will open in April 2021.
“The CRGC fellowship helped me see the world from the viewpoint of someone other than myself—from the viewpoint of a Muslim, an atheist, a Jew, an agnostic, and so on. I was able to understand not only modern issues but day-to-day life as seen by other people and I think that’s really valuable in our world today, where many people are increasingly intolerant of others’ views.”
— Chloe Hattenhauer (2019-20)
“Growing up and learning about religion through textbooks, this experience has taught me that it truly is the people, families, and unique faces that make up the religions we read so much about. The fellowship has helped me realize we are so much more alike than different and has shown me firsthand the power of interfaith dialogue.”
— Hannah Silver (2019-20)
“This fellowship has helped me learn and reflect on myself immensely. I was able to make connections and have conversations with people of differing faith backgrounds that I probably wouldn’t have gotten to have in any other setting. Regardless of your faith background, this fellowship has a lot to give.”
– Ali Qureshi (2019-20)
“I am very grateful for being an interfaith fellow this year. I learnt many things like understanding how people my age view the world and how we share many values. The experience also opened my eyes to the many opportunities there are for interfaith collaborations that may have a positive impact on the world we live in.”
– Hassnaa Mohammed (2019-20)
The Interdisciplinary Religion Group
The Interdisciplinary Religion Group (IRG) is an informal working group of graduate students and faculty members whose interests involve the study of religion. Our hope is to provide a forum where participants can workshop research-in-progress, discuss theoretical and practical issues involved in the academic study of religion, and form connections across departments at UW-Madison. As our name suggests, we welcome participants from across the humanities and social sciences. The IRG aims to hold monthly meetings.
The Interfaith Network
The CRGC is closely collaborating with The Interfaith Network at UW-Madison to promote interreligious literacy and cooperation on campus. The Interfaith Network at UW-Madison is a Registered Student Organization under the Associated Students of Madison. This group aims to meet biweekly to discuss local, national, and/or international issues of interest to religious and non-religious students. The group is meant to serve as a bridge between the interfaith fellows and the wider campus community.
We are mourning the recent victims of police brutality George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, and the murder of Ahmaud Arbery, among countless others. We offer our prayers and outrage to all victims of racial injustice. …June 12, 2020
Dear Badgers, It has been an extraordinary time of unsettling events in our community, nation, and world. We know that your lives have been upended and many of the things you were looking forward to …March 24, 2020
The University of Wisconsin-Madison has suspended all in-person classes and events until April 10 due to our current public health emergency. The ongoing crisis effects our planned programming for spring semester, including our Interdisciplinary Religion …March 16, 2020
We are again in mourning, this time for the death of one Jewish worshiper and the injuries of several others at the hands of a white supremacist attacker. Chabad synagogue was observing the last day …May 6, 2019
The death of 49 worshippers at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand was an act of terrorism, a clear manifestation of religious and ideological intolerance. To specifically target a house of worship on a day …March 15, 2019
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