Laura Vang '15
Student Director for Conversations That Matter
Hometown: Memphis, TNRead the full interview
Ana Maria Dumitru is a third year student in the MDPhD program at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, currently pursuing her PhD in Biochemistry in the lab of Dr. Duane Compton of the Molecular and Cellular Biology Program. Born in Romania, Ana Maria spent most of her childhood in the suburbs of Atlanta, GA. She inched her way north by attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill for college. Graduating in 2010 with a BS in Biology, Ana Maria spent a year working as a research technician at the UNC Center for Alcohol Studies before making the big leap north to begin her studies at Geisel. When she isn’t in lab, Ana Maria enjoys exploring the different activities the Upper Valley has to offer including kayaking, skiing, skating on Occum Pond, and hiking, but more than anything else, she enjoys spending time getting to know other people. A closet sociologist, Ana Maria hopes to gain a better understanding of how people come to establish their beliefs, and how this affects both their day-to-day life and their long-term career trajectory. As the Berthold Fellow this year, Ana Maria is working on promoting discussions about faith and vocations across the various campuses at Dartmouth. She also hopes to create opportunities for medical students and undergraduates with pre-med plans to be exposed to religious-based conversations about suffering with patients in the hospital.
Rich Lopez is currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences. Born and raised in New Jersey, Rich also attended college there at Princeton University. He graduated in 2009 with a BA in psychology. He then moved to Manhattan and spent two years at Columbia University as a research assistant in a psychology lab that investigated emotion regulation in both healthy and clinical populations. In his free time, Rich enjoys skiing, reading, running, and composing original music. He also loves to philosophize and theologize over a coffee or pint. He is excited to be the 2012-13 Berthold Fellow, a position he thinks will provide a unique opportunity to foster engagement and unity across many of Dartmouth's vibrant sub-communities. Rich hopes that the fellowship will allow him to augment awareness of issues of faith and service that have both local and global implications, such as human trafficking and sustainability.
Kemi Adedokun is currently a second year student in the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies program and is writing her thesis with plans to graduate in June 2012. She hails from the south and grew up in Murfreesboro, Tenn., where she attended the Webb School. She went on to obtain her bachelor’s degree in international studies from Oakwood University in Hunstville, Ala., keeping in the tradition of her family who all (yes, aunts and uncles included) attended before her and still attend now (brother and cousins). She loves to spend her free time reading blogs, watching her favorite YouTube subscriptions, reading for pleasure (a very rare treat in grad school!), and watching foreign art-house films that are sometimes cryptic and others refuse to watch with her. She is deeply passionate about service and plans to make that "calling" a lifelong pursuit as an international human rights lawyer. She feels that the most important aspect of her life has been her deeply-ingrained spirituality and would like to share how grounding that has been for her with others through her project.
Kemi says: "My project is an extension of the Voices of Faith program that took place Tuesday, November 8, 2011, in Collis Common Ground. I am seeking out the personal accounts of spiritual experiences and what spurred the impetus to believe in a higher power from students,staff, and faculty. The reflections only have to be 250-500 words long and the prompts are, 'What made you believe in something greater than yourself?', 'What is the most meaningful experience that you have had spiritually?', and 'Why is religion important to you?' and 'What are some of the influences (things, people, and influences ) that have caused you to identify with your particular religious preferences or take none at all?' I was inspired to create this project from my love of blogs and the series Americans Talk About Love on Salon.com by author John Lowe. The weekly series shared a story of an American couple and their journey towards or away from love. I thought, 'What if I did that with faith and belief?' Thus my project was born."
Last Updated: 12/9/14