Lake in the Hills, Ill.
Johnathon Augustine chose to become a religion major after taking The Gospels course taught by professor and Pastor Ross Larson. “I fell in love with this intellectual approach to religion,” Johnathon said. “After that, I started talking with the other professors, and decided this major was right for me.”
One of Johnathon’s favorite things about the Carthage Religion Department is its faculty. “They make the department and Carthage for me.”
“Do something you love. Just find a major that you really enjoy and get excited about going to class.”
“I plan to attend an ELCA seminary and seek ordination. After that I plan on earning a Ph.D. in religion. My end career goal is to be able to teach religion/theology at a college or university and be able to serve in a church.”
How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?
“I love all of the religion faculty. They all bring great things to the table, always challenging and expanding my learning. My favorite would have to be Pastor Ross Larson. He is a great teacher. I learned so much in The Gospels class, and he challenged me to do many things that benefited me immensely. He is willing to challenge students so that they can really grow and continue to learn. And he is always willing to talk to students.”
“My favorite class at Carthage has been Jesus and Socrates. It was taught by Prof. Maczka and Prof. Heitman. It was such a great class and was super interesting. I really learned how to study ancient texts of not only religion but also philosophy. The best part of the class was the discussion portion, hearing what everyone thought about and their particular ideas.”
“I’m President of Lutheran Student Movement and a member of Theta Alpha Kappa, the academic religion fraternity. LSM is a campus ministry organization with a focus on Lutheranism and TAK is an academic outlet for the study of religion.”
“Biblical Images of Christ with Dr. von Dehsen was the most challenging course I’ve taken. When I had ideas, Professor von Dehsen really challenged those and wanted me to be strong in those and have academic backing. It was a difficult course, but I really learned from it.”
Opportunities at Carthage
“Wonderful faculty, especially in the Religion Department.”
Favorite moments and memories at Carthage
“My favorite moments at Carthage are when I eat dinner in the Caf with Pastor Larson, sit down and talk with Prof. Maczka in Einstein’s, or spend time talking with Dr. Thomas Long in his office.”
Favorite spot on campus
“Down by the lake. It is so beautiful to watch the lake and the way the water constantly changes.”
Biggest surprise so far
“That I am a religion major. I changed from accounting/pre-law to religion and that’s a drastic change, but I love it.”
Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?
“It is a great major and department. All of the professors are wonderful. Try out all sorts of different classes. But more important than that, talk with your professors. That is where I learned the most.”