By: Tara Celentano (2022 Clinical Mental Health Counseling)
Interdisciplinary Studies seniors presented their BA capstone projects to a revolving 52-member audience – a Zoom room full of family members and friends, partners, program alumnx, and Naropa faculty on May 5th.
The presentations ranged from films and slide shows to poetry, exploring a wide range of interdisciplinary topics and themes. Students introduced one another, providing intimate and warm-hearted biographical sketches for the audience, along with a sense of community and collaboration. That support translated into a collection of kind words typed into the chat box throughout the presentations. Still, amid pandemic, students embraced the continued interruption that relegated their productions to an online format.
I have been serving as the Graduate Assistant for the Interdisciplinary Studies department for the past two years and have been fortunate to share moments along the journey with many of these students. Witnessing while they eloquently shared their radical and necessary viewpoints, offering redirection from the impending failures of the mainstream into a more interconnected and compassionate future, I left filled with inspiration, hope, and appreciation.
Here are the 2021 INTD graduating seniors and their project titles:
Malena (Mo) Ordnung: The Body within the Body
Christina Kaplan: Ecofeminist Art Combats Toxic Masculinity
Kolyah Williams: Performance Poetry Gives Voice to Marginalized Peoples
Kyra Barnard: Decentering Whiteness: The Impacts of Colonization and Subhumanization in the Mainstream Vegan Movement
Hannah Gardner: Curricular Development with a Focus on Social Justice and Holistic Models
Montez Smith: Companion Plants and Room to Grow: Nature and Mentorship at the Educational Margins
Anna Guterman: Eco Linguistic Perspectives on Pratyabhijna and the Influence of Language on the Human-Nature Relationship
Having graduated, these students embark on a right of passage, offering a further testament to their resilience in the face of global interruption. My wish for them is that the friendships and the knowledge and values they’ve learned at Naropa University continue to haunt them – and inform them – in the most fulfilling ways in their future journeys.