Dennis Saavedra Carquin-Hamichand is second year Master of Divinity student at Iliff School of Theology, focusing on Social Justice and Ethics. In his current professional role, Dennis is a career advisor at a community college in New York City. He works with a diverse immigrant population in providing them with employment assistance. In that work, he recognizes the need to fight for equity in our society because of the significant economic disparity Black people, People of Color, and Queer communities face in accessing essential resources for survival. In his work, he seeks to change the current culture that reduces oppressed groups to numbers, stripping them of their humanity. At Iliff, Dennis plans to use his time for identity re/formation, consciousness-raising, and discernment for his vocation. He knows he comes with a sexist and colonized mindset and wants to re/shape that mindset through intentional reflection and rigorous learning. In the one year he has spent at Iliff, he has found that it has the space and resources for him to develop his identity. As part of the ongoing learning process, Dennis will be doing his internship at St. Stephens Episcopal Church in Aurora- he is looking forward to this opportunity. As a student ambassador, Dennis plans to cultivate meaningful relationships that will help in his formation as a leader in his community. Community building is essential to social justice, which he knows can come through connections with many people at Iliff.
Lexi Jones is a third year Master of Divinity student at Iliff School of Theology. She currently works with youth and young adults in ministry contexts. Lexi grew up in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and still affiliates and serves within the church. This year, Lexi is doing her academic internship at Lutheran Campus Ministry at the University of Colorado, Boulder. This internship is providing her with many learning opportunities as she engages in the different areas of nontraditional ministry. She has enjoyed building relationships with college students and developing her leadership skills in this context. Lexi values being a part of the diverse, social justice oriented community at Iliff. Her educational experience is shaping her vocational formation as she prepares for rostered leadership in the ELCA. Lexi also enjoys building relationships and making connections with others in her role as a student ambassador.