As an incoming college student, Jamie searched for a place where he could pursue a variety of interests. He explains, “Luther was the only place where I could do everything I wanted.” Although he majored in biology and religion, he was also involved in music, SPOKES, and Students Helping Our Community (SHOC). “At Luther,” he said, “I didn’t have to compromise.”
Jamie’s first off-campus J-Term course was in Holden Village, Washington, where he studied environmental ethics with Jim Martin-Schramm. The month changed Jamie’s course of study from medicine to ethics and environmental policy. In the following years, Jamie chose two more J-Term courses, Green Germany and Human Dissection, which furthered his interest in environmental ethics. He says, “It cemented the notion that there are genuine people involved in any struggle.” Because of these courses, Jamie devoted himself to giving struggling people a voice. “My passion was no longer on the back-burner, but something that was concretely in front of me,” he says.
Working closely with religion professor, Jim Martin-Schramm, Jamie describes his work-study position as an academic administrative assistant as “both challenging and affirming.” He assisted Martin-Schramm with writing a book on Earth ethics. “I got an inside glimpse of the effort that is needed to publish a book, while also teaching, grading, meeting with students, and being involved in the community,” Jamie says.
Additionally, Jamie worked as a project manager in the Center for Sustainable Communities (CSC) for four years. He gained web and marketing skills and also learned the importance of time management. He recalls it as “one of the most formative experiences” for him at Luther, especially because it led to a full-time job with the CSC as the Energy and Waste Fellow after Jamie graduated.
After working at Luther’s Center for Sustainable Communities as the Energy and Waste Fellow for one year, Jamie now studies interreligious engagement and social ethics with a concentration on Earth ethics at Union Theological Seminary in New York City.