The Urban Fellows program is an opportunity for a select cohort of individuals to experience contextual learning by engaging in field practices, developing partnerships, initiating transforming ministries through research projects and participating in a weekly seminar. Applicants for this program should have a heart for the city and be willing to deeply engage in theological conversations.
How do I apply? - Interested students can apply to the Urban Fellows program as part of their admissions process to Wesley. Urban Fellows are required to be full-time Master of Divinity students taking a minimum of nine hours each semester. Applicants must submit an essay addressing the following questions:
Essays of 1,500 words or less must be received by February 1. Essays may be submitted by email to firstname.lastname@example.org, by fax at (202) 885-8585 or by mail to Admissions Office, Wesley Theological Seminary, 4500 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC, 20016. Finalists for the Urban Fellows program will be invited to interview with members of the Urban Ministry Faculty Committee.
CHRISTIAN BROWN is a 2014 graduate of Howard University’s Nursing Program and a recent recognized Urban Fellow. Her tenacity to serve in the urban setting was birthed from a summer journey to Cape-town South Africa as an educator during a missionary trip. As a Master of Divinity candidate, she acknowledges a call of passion and purpose with the mission of marrying both spirituality and health towards the greater good of all people. Unknown of her spiritual destination, she remains open in both heart and mind as she discovers the desire and plans that God has designed for her. While acknowledging the power of the church and its gospel, Christian particularly aspires to pursue active community reformation through parish ministry. In the future, she wishes to embark upon further cultural emersions of faith and spirituality through missionary work in various countries and diverse communities.
PATRICE GERIDEAU, a writer, actress and teaching artist, is a Christ addict and chocolate lover at the intersection of life, faith and the arts. She firmly believes in the power of the written, spoken, and performed word to transform lives. She also believes that a healed woman of God, living on purpose can change the landscape of her immediate, communal, and global surroundings. To that end, she seeks to share the message of God’s undying love, grace and mercy through the arts to inspire women to live healed and whole lives in Christ and to build sisterhood across the lines of diversity. Patrice holds two Bachelor of Arts degrees in Psychology and Journalism from the University of Georgia. She studied Poetry, Performance and Playwriting at New York University and dramatic writing in Cape Town, South Africa. Patrice is a graduate of the Honors Acting Conservatory at The Theatre Lab School of Dramatic Arts. She is enrolled in the Masters of Divinity program.
REBECCA GOLTRY is an Urban Fellow at Wesley Theological Seminary. Rebecca grew up in Wichita, Kansas and later attended Kansas State University earning a Bachelors of Science in Geography and minors in Urban Planning and American Ethnic Studies. Through her coursework and active participation in the Great Plains Conference of the United Methodist Church, Rebecca has developed a passion for urban ministries. Some of the greatest experiences Rebecca has had with Urban Ministries are; volunteering at the United Methodist Open Door, an urban pantry and shelter, as well as working for the Boys and Girls Club and Mountain T.O.P (Tennessee Outreach Project). Rebecca firmly believes that the greatest advocates for change new life within an urban setting are children and that is why Rebecca is thrilled to bring her skill set of working with underprivileged children to the Nation's Capital.
ASHLEY LAWTER was raised in Spartanburg, SC and attended Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville, TN where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Religion and Youth Ministry. During her time in Nashville she served as a mentor at Harvest Hands Community Development Corp where she worked with middle school and high school students in the Vine Hill community of South Nashville. In 2012, she served as service coordinator in Harrisburg, PA where she worked with local organizations in Harrisburg to coordinate mission trips for youth groups from all over the United States. In 2013, she served as Site Director in Sisseton, SD on the Lake Traverse Reservation where she oversaw the Lake Traverse Site and supervised work projects and children’s ministry programs in the community. Lawter is a second year Urban Fellow and M. Div student at Wesley Theological Seminary.
KELVIN MULEMBE is an exceptionally gifted faith-leader and nonprofit professional, with ten years of both practical and educational experience. He is an alumni of the University of Zambia where he graduated with a BA in Special Education & History and later with a Postgraduate Diploma in Human Rights Law. Kelvin discovered his call to a “theology for the Social gospel” while working for Children in Crisis (CIC), where he advocated for Child Rights, Child Protection and Psycosocial support for orphans and vulnerable children in Africa. He also worked in HIV/AIDS with the United Nations Development Program. Currently, he is an Immigration and Refugee Rights Fellow with Church World Service in Washington, DC. He is married to Katie a native of Cleveland, Ohio. Kelvin is the only one in the family stood by Lebron James when he ditched the Caveliers for the Miami Heat before returning as the prodigal son.
LATASKA MONIQUE NELSON is a native of Detroit, Michigan. She later relocated to Flint, Michigan where she met and married Armon Chadell Nelson the year of 1989. Armon and LaTaska Nelson are blessed to have three daughters. In 1995, LaTaska was employed with General Motors/ Flint Truck & Bus in Flint, MI. She worked for General Motors Spring Hill, TN for 12 years. LaTaska casually worked as a negotiator with Local 1853. She was licensed in 2001 as an Evangelist/Missionary in the Church of God in Christ. She is a Graduate of American Baptist College Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies/Church and Society. While at the American Baptist College, she was selected out of 295 persons to intern with Center for Community Change in Washington, D.C through the Generation Change program designed to train students to become Community Organizers. She served as the President of the Student Government Association (SGA). LaTaska Nelson has worked diligently in the church as well as the community. She is an anointed preacher and teacher. She enjoys miming, writing and spending time with her family.
LESLEY NEWMAN-SEWELL has a heart for helping people, especially women and children, build satisfying, successful and God-centered lives. She serves as Youth and Young Adult Minister at Wards Memorial United Methodist Church and the facilitator of a women’s group, W.A.R. (Women Anointed for Righteousness). Lesley graduated from McDaniel College in Westminster, MD with a B.A. in Business Administration and a Minor in Sociology. Currently, Lesley works as a Social Service Representative for the District of Columbia, where she daily addresses the needs of the residents of the District. Lesley is excited about her time as a Wesley Urban Fellow and how the program will aid in directing the path of her service to those she is being sent to serve.
CHAIM ABRAMOWITZ RODRIGUEZ (CJ) was born on the island of St. Thomas USVI, but spent the majority of his life in Puerto Rico. Prior to moving to Maryland in 2008, CJ was a science teacher for the Puerto Rico Board of Education. He holds a BA in Secondary Biology Education, a MEd in Curriculum and Instruction in Biology, and a MA in School Administration and Supervision from the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico. In addition, CJ is currently finishing up his Ed.D in science and Mathematics education at Morgan State University in Baltimore. While completing his doctoral studies, CJ felt, yet once again, his call into full-time ministry. He is currently a member in discernment for ordination with the Potomac Association of the United Church of Christ. In addition to his passion for Urban Ministry, he is a member of the GLBTQ Christian community who is committed to the much needed dialogue in favor of the unconditional inclusion of ALL persons into every facet of church and ministry life. He currently serves as part of the Spiritual formation team at the Community Church of Washington DC-UCC, a radically open and inclusive Christian community in South East DC, as well as on the Committee for Higher Education of the Potomac Association of the UCC. He looks forward to his time at Wesley Theological Seminary and the opportunity to participate in the Urban Fellows Program.
JAZMINE STEELE is a multimedia journalist from Detroit, Michigan where she spent five years covering arts and culture for the Michigan Citizen Newspaper. Her background includes community outreach and communications work with the State of Michigan Department of Civil Rights and other non-profit organizations. Steele is a third year Urban Fellow at Wesley Theological Seminary studying the intersection of faith, culture and media arts. Her life's vocation is dedicated to imagining creative spiritual formation in a postmodern society.
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