College searches for chaplain
The College is in the process of conducting a search to hire a full- time campus chaplain who will serve as the dean for student spiritual and religious life.
As noted on the Student Affairs Division page of the College’s website, “This critically important position will bring experienced leadership and add meaningful support to enhance the work being done by the chaplains and the many active student religious groups.”
The College chaplaincy program serves to provide a safe space where all students can explore their own spirituality and, with the guidance of the chaplains, get to know people who share their faith and engage each other in conversation.
All four of the chaplains on the Hill are currently involved in other efforts with their churches and synagogues, so they are only on campus part-time and cannot dedicate all of their working hours toward developing the chaplaincy program on the Hill. Therefore, the College is looking for someone who is a “multi-faith minister who has knowledge and experience across the board and can develop the beginning of interfaith dialogue,” Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students James Terhune said. “She/he is responsible for working with the Colby community in developing the spiritual life within the Pugh Center and around campus.”
The current chaplains on the Hill are Alice Anderman, the Protestant chaplain, Father Daniel Baillargeon, a Catholic chaplain, Father Jack Dickinson, also a Catholic chaplain and Rachel Isaacs, the Jewish chaplain. Their offices are all located in Lorimer Chapel. “These four people are so dynamic and energetic,” Terhune said.
Anderman has been a minister for the United Church of Christ in Waterville for 35 years. “Our purpose is to get the message out that wherever you are in your spiritual journey, you can find your place,” Anderman said. “My personal goal is to see students connecting spirituality to whatever discipline.” To better get to know the students on the Hill, she has been involved with classes in the Religion Department and Art Department and with the Career Center. Anderman is also involved with students on a more personal level through weekly bible study discussions. Isaacs is equally involved with Jewish students through Hillel.
Terhune emphasized that, in addition to being an extremely good resource for current students, the chaplain would help enhance the College’s appeal to a diverse array of prospective students. Anderman believes that “Colby in itself affords you the opportunity to interact with diverse people and encourages civility, respect and growth, aspects that are really important when you graduate.” By having a full-time chaplain on campus, the College hopes to expand these opportunities and emphasize its devotion to fostering these spiritual values in those students who wish to take advantage of this new resource.