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In Fall 2021, the Tufts University Chaplaincy piloted a new Interfaith Ambassador Program for undergraduate students.  This team of Interfaith Ambassadors works together to understand and engage religious diversity on campus, in their own communities, and in the world.  Ambassadors actively foster interfaith community with curiosity about the lived experiences of people with diverse religious, spiritual, and philosophical identities and create spaces to facilitate learning, dialogue and action related to these kinds of questions: What does it mean to live democratically with religious diversity? How do we bring our own personal values and practices into the work for social justice? What is the role of interfaith communities in becoming an anti-racist campus community?  How do religious and non-religious communities and individuals work together for the common good?  Ambassadors have the opportunity to learn more about their own beliefs; to explore what interfaith engagement means to them; and to deepen their understandings of civic engagement, justice, and peace in a pluralistic world. Ambassadors have the opportunity to participate in leadership development across campus and at conferences throughout the year. 

The Ambassador team is supervised by University Chaplaincy Elyse Nelson Winger and receives guidance and support from the whole Chaplaincy team.  Ambassadors work 6-8 hours per week.  Hours include weekly team meetings as well as scheduled hours for study, program development, and program leadership.  Students join planning teams for key signature events including Pax et Lux and the MLK Day of Community Action and also work alongside staff and faculty in the development of the new religious diversity and civic life program sponsored by Tisch College for Civic Life, the Religion Department, and the University Chaplaincy.   

 

Andrew Fellows

Andrew Fellows

Pronouns: he/him/his

Class Year: 2023

Major: International Relations, Middle Eastern Studies

Hometown: Newtown, PA

Interests/Extracurriculars: WMFO (Tufts radio), learning languages, bike rides, concerts!

Why are you excited to work with the Interfaith Ambassador team?: Our events and programs bring so much joy to Tufts and I love to expand our outreach! We all have deep interests outside of interfaith work which we use to broaden the Chaplaincy's horizons!

Ananya Modi

Ananya Modi

Pronouns: she/her/hers

Class Year: 2025

Major: Political Science, Spanish

Hometown: Mumbai, IN + New York, NY (since 2017)

Interests/Extracurriculars: Animals and nature, kathak, ballet, Tufts SAPAC, Teach in CORES, mango sticky rice, progressive politics

Why are you excited to work with the Interfaith Ambassador team?: I am excited to collaborate with the other ambassadors for meaningful projects and ideas, I am also eager to learn about how we can bridge existing divides between communities using religion and the love and understanding it fosters. I want to help build common ground through interfaith organizing and also host events at Tufts.

Ariel Kayton

Ariel Kayton

Pronouns: she/they

Class Year: 2023

Major: Religion

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA

Interests/Extracurriculars: COFFEE president, painting, visiting museums, live music, the beach!

Why are you excited to work with the Interfaith Ambassador team?: The IFA team is a wonderful space to learn and practice empathy and intentional listening amongst a group of incredible people. My peers in IFA each approach interfaith work in distinct and inspiring ways, and I am thrilled to continue to learn from them!

Jane Romp

Jane Romp

Pronouns: she/her/hers

Class Year: 2023

Major: Political Science, Civic Studies, and Sociology

Hometown: Des Moines, IA

Interests/Extracurriculars: Voting rights advocacy, mock trial, model united nations, cow-themed items, and concerts!

Why are you excited to work with the Interfaith Ambassador team?: I am so excited to see how each Interfaith Ambassador brings their own lived experiences and passions into our collaborations!

Emily Thompson

Emily Thompson

Pronouns: she/her/hers

Class Year: 2024

Major: Political Science, Religion

Hometown: Denton, MD

Interests/Extracurriculars: Journalism, field organizing, Protestant Students Association co-president; playing piano, baking with friends, reading.

Why are you excited to work with the Interfaith Ambassador team?: The Interfaith Community at Tufts has provided me so much space to make connections with other students, build community, learn, and grow. It is a wonderful space to share our passions and experiences while working towards a more just society.

Joseph Lim

Joseph Lim

Pronouns: he/hm/his

Class Year: 2023

Major: International Relations, Film and Media Studies

Hometown: Daegu, South Korea

Interests/Extracurriculars:

Why are you excited to work with the Interfaith Ambassador team?:

Lena Leavitt

Lena Leavitt

Pronouns: she/her/hers

Class Year: 2024

Major: Religion and History

Hometown: Sudbury, MA

Interests/Extracurriculars: Drawing, education, DJ for WMFO, visiting museums, taking long walks with friends

Why are you excited to work with the Interfaith Ambassador team?: Each member of the IFA team has their own unique experiences to bring to the table; at the same time, we are all bonded by a passion for interfaith and social justice work. I just can't wait to hear everyone's thoughts and stories!

Luna Doherty-Ryoke

Luna Doherty-Ryoke

Pronouns: she/her/hers

Class Year:

Major:

Hometown:

Interests/Extracurriculars:

Why are you excited to work with the Interfaith Ambassador team?:

Neha Ratnapuri

Neha Ratnapuri

Pronouns: she/her/hers

Class Year: 2023

Major: Psychology & Civic Studies

Hometown: Washington, D.C.

Interests/Extracurriculars: Music and Dance, Tufts Pulse, SAPAC, cooking, anything with friends 🙂

Why are you excited to work with the Interfaith Ambassador team?: I am excited to continue to expand my understandings of how faith, religion, and spirituality interact with culture, identity, power, and politics to inform individual and group values, interactions, and movements. I am really looking forward to building meaningful programming with a team of similarly passionate students and faculty that address these intersections!