Primiano receives grants to improve religious studies

By Alyssa Mentzer
March 19, 2010

Dr. Leonard Primiano, professor and chair of the department of religious studies and co-director of the honors program, has been awarded over $10,000 in grants that will help further his studies and benefit the college. Primiano was awarded three grants that were from different areas and concerns.

The first grant is from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and is worth $5,350. It will be used to improve archives such as Cabrini College Religious Folk, Popular and Liturgical Arts Collection and the Don Yoder Collection of Religious Folk Art in the Holy Spirit Library.

“I am always honored and excited to receive national recognition with grants like the National Endowment for the Humanities or the Wabash Foundation. I am especially happy about the NEH grant, which will provide money for a consultant to advise us about the Holy Spirit Library Archives, which definitely are not a funding priority at the college and deserve the professional attention,” Primiano said.

Primiano also received another grant from The Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in theology and religion to fund a workshop.

“They gave me funding worth $4,763 to hold the workshop, ‘Space, Place and Religious Meaning in the Classroom,’ which I co-presented in the annual American Academy of Religion meeting in Montreal in Nov. 2009 along with professor Jeanne Kilde of the University of Minnesota,” Primiano said.  “The workshop attracted participants from Canada and the United States and was very successful.”

Aside from receiving more than $10,000 in grants, Primiano is also part of recent consortium grant worth $75,000 awarded to the American Folklore Society by the the Teagle Foundation through the “big question initiative.”

According to Primiano the project will explore the issue “What is the relationship between lay and expert knowledge in a complex society and how can the consideration of such issues be useful for teaching in the liberal arts college?”

The grants that Primiano have received are already hard at work, improving the college and its religious studies programs.

“It is quite satisfying to gain grant money for the Holy Spirit Library, which is the intellectual heart of our campus. It is always important to have the name Cabrini College visible in national publications and Web sites announcing the awards and associated activities,” Primiano said.   “The Teagle grant is exciting because it will stimulate me to transform a course and develop new questions and critical learning activities for my students.”

Alyssa Mentzer

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