Student Activities and Interviews

Exterior of Swartz Hall

Video: Honoring the Past, Embracing the Future: The Renewal of Swartz Hall

November 8, 2021
The renovation of Swartz Hall embodies Harvard Divinity School’s vision for a campus that is truly inclusive —a place where students from every imaginable tradition and background can come together in pursuit of humanity’s most fundamental questions and answers—both in classrooms worthy of their brilliance and in communal spaces that nurture the informal interactions from which new ideas and new relationships so often flow.... Read more about Video: Honoring the Past, Embracing the Future: The Renewal of Swartz Hall
Nadia Milad Issa

Modeling Multireligious Community: Nadia Milad Issa, MTS '22

November 4, 2021

Nadia Milad Issa (they/them) is a scholar-practitioner, dance educator, and an Iyalochá (fully initiated high priestess of Regla de Ocha-Ifá). A lifelong dancer, Nadia graduated from Hampshire College with an individualized degree in dance, anthropology, and Africana studies. They’ve continued fusing art and activism in their work at HDS, where they focus on Afrikan-derived traditions in the Afro-Caribbean diaspora, particularly Afro-Cuban and Afro-Brazilian traditions of Regla de Ocha-Ifá, Candomblé, and Umbanda.... Read more about Modeling Multireligious Community: Nadia Milad Issa, MTS '22

Cody Hooks

Modeling Multireligious Community: Cody Hooks, MDiv '22

November 4, 2021

The summer before starting at HDS, Cody Hooks (he/him) undertook a pilgrimage through northern New Mexico to visit LGBTQIA+ elders and gather up fragments of their collective history. Many had lived through the peak of AIDS and forged ways of caring for one another in the midst of devastation, “making lives of soulful abundance out of a sometimes impossible world.”... Read more about Modeling Multireligious Community: Cody Hooks, MDiv '22

Suzannah Omonuk

Modeling Multireligious Community: Suzannah Omonuk, MDiv '23

November 4, 2021

Soon after Suzannah Omonuk (she/her) began studying at HDS, she came across an application for a student grant funded by Harvard and the Legacy of Slavery Initiative, which examines Harvard’s connections to slavery through ongoing discussions, programming, and research. Omonuk learned about slavery as a child growing up in Uganda, but these lessons did not fully explain the aftermath seen and felt in the US and beyond. She began writing a poem, “The Story of Venus,” both to give voice to an enslaved young woman who worked on Harvard’s campus in the 1700s and to process her own experience as a young African woman in the United States. “I thought, what better way to do it than place myself in the shoes of another young Black woman who came to this country and who walked the streets of Harvard under completely different circumstances?”... Read more about Modeling Multireligious Community: Suzannah Omonuk, MDiv '23

Swati Chauhan

Modeling Multireligious Community: Swati Chauhan, MTS ’22

November 4, 2021

As an undergraduate at Ambedkar University Delhi in India, Swati Chauhan (she/her) started reading the many Ramayanas in a comparative literature class. At first, she approached the tradition strictly through a literary lens, focusing on character development and plot structure. When asked about its theological content, she saw this as outside her scope: “People would ask me questions like, ‘What do you think about Rama as a god?’ or ‘What do you think about the Ramayana’s appropriation by the ‘Hindu nationalists’?’ and I would say, ‘That’s not my thing.’”... Read more about Modeling Multireligious Community: Swati Chauhan, MTS ’22

Owen Yager, MTS '23

Humans of HDS: Finding Religion in the Natural World

October 22, 2021

“I didn’t grow up religious, but from a young age I’ve found whatever divine presence is out there in the American West’s nature. There are so many crises facing those natural expanses, though, from existential crises prompted by climate change to deep societal divisions rendering them inaccessible and unprotected. I want to be able to help heal a few of those problems.”—Owen Yager, MTS '23... Read more about Humans of HDS: Finding Religion in the Natural World

Harvard Gazette logo

Renewal of Building Reflects Evolution of Divinity School

October 7, 2021
When the renewed Swartz Hall finally reopened its doors this semester, it welcomed members of the HDS and Harvard communities separated since the start of the pandemic to a renewed building, one that reflects a changed (and changing) Divinity School.

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