Winston-Salem City Wide Kwanzaa Umoja-Unity Award (for exemplifying the principle of Umoja: “to strive for and maintain unity”),awarded by the Winston-Salem Urban League and Triad Cultural Arts, Inc. December 26, 2014.
Alunmi Spotlight: Randy Paris, 2011
What are you doing today (professionally) and how did studying Religion prepare you for this?
I’m a Confidential Assistant at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, where I help a team focused on leveraging science, technology, and innovation for the public good. This includes work on everything from enhancing education delivery, to helping small business grow, to expanding human capacity in space.
Studying religion at Wake helped me succeed because it showed me the value of expanding my intellectual horizons – exploring tough questions, stretching my brain, and building empathy.
In your opinion, what are the benefits of studying Religion?
The Religion Department at Wake is an environment where students are freed from a lot of the strings that make other departments feel more like work than play. In the Religion Department, there’s much more space to dive into your passion – to grow how you’d like to grow.
What advice do you have for current Religion students?
Take Ritual studies. Explore Dr. Boyd’s Religion & Public Engagement program and be sure to read “Making Justice Our Business.”
How have other areas of your life been shaped by studying Religion?
The word religion utterly fails to encapsulate the full value of the intellectual experience offered by the department. I use what I learned in religion every day to help be a smarter individual, stronger professional, and better person.