Senior Fellows 2022-2023
Hello! My name is Kristina Fiedler and I am from Chicago. I am currently a Junior at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, studying Environmental Science and German. I was raised as a Missouri Synod Lutheran with some Brazilian spiritual flares. In high school, I developed a passion for learning about other cultures, languages, and belief systems. Through my friends and teachers, I accumulated knowledge on Islam, Baha’i-ism, Agnosticism, Hinduism, and Buddhism. My exploration led me to reflect on my own faith. I now identify as Theist with an increasing interest in Buddhism as a philosophical guide. A theist believes in a higher power but does not ascribe to any particular religion or set of practices. As the pandemic comes to somewhat of an end, I am excited to meet new people and have conversations that can engage my curiosity. As a Fellow, I am eager to utilize and share my passions for research and discovery. I am most looking forward to the interfaith dialogue that I will take part in as a CRGC Fellow and I am excited to continue diversifying my spiritual horizons.
Hello! My name is Jaskiran Kaur Sandhu, and I am a rising junior majoring in Biology. I am from Madison, WI, and I am a Sikh. My faith has become a prominent aspect of my life because of my parents and family. Throughout elementary, middle, and high school, I would visit the Gurudwara (the Sikh temple) every week and attend Punjabi School, where I learned about Sikh history and the Punjabi/Gurmukhi language. Growing up as a Sikh, I realized over time how little is known about my religion. This became even more clear after the Oak Creek Sikh Temple shooting in 2012. From this tragedy, I learned how one’s ignorance can lead to harm, but also why spreading awareness and creating opportunities for interreligious dialogue can be so valuable. As a CRGC fellow, I am excited to meet students and learn about their different faiths while sharing knowledge about mine, have meaningful conversations about the role of religion in our lives, and create a space to discuss issues in our society such as the ignorance and misconceptions regarding different faiths.
Hello! My name is Jaime Wendt. I was raised and confirmed Catholic according to my family’s wishes, and I have returned to exploring and practicing the faith after lapsing. I’m a senior at UW-Madison studying Religious Studies and Criminal Justice. I previously attended the University of Minnesota right after graduating high school and had to leave without completing my degree. After a long break and a decade of working in finance, I decided I wanted to change careers and enrolled in the Badger Ready program at UW to finish my degree in a completely different field! As I started my time back at school, it became clear to me that being successful in school would mean engaging in self-forgiveness for mistakes I had previously made in my academic career. It then occurred to me that most people will need to access forgiveness throughout their lives, including people who have been or who are currently incarcerated. I look forward to researching what forgiveness means to different people, religions, and cultural traditions in my final year of school. I’m also looking forward to implementing a philosophy of forgiveness in my work after graduation!