Religious Studies
apply online
request information

The Religious Studies Program at Siena Heights University challenges students to engage in the academic study of religion, to construct an ethical worldview informed by faith, to strengthen their understanding of God and to hone tools and skills for life-long spiritual development.

A degree in Religious Studies prepares a student for a wide variety of post-graduate directions, including graduate studies toward careers in academia, parish work, religious education, journalism and more.

  • About the Program
  • Meet the Faculty
  • Career Opportunities
  • Clubs & Organizations

Learn more about the Religious Studies program.

Students who major in Religious Studies can choose from three areas of concentration:

  1. Pastoral Studies with an emphasis on ministry: Students selecting this concentration within the major will be encouraged to complement their religious studies education with courses from other disciplines that will help them with careers in parish ministry. In such a professional context, skills related to education, counseling, and group dynamics can be of great help, and students trained in these areas will be better suited for careers in ministry.
  2. Religious Studies with an emphasis on world religions and philosophy: Students selecting this concentration within the major will explore the historical development, beliefs and practices associated with some of the major religious traditions, become familiar with both phenomenological and philosophical approaches to the study of religion, and consider the intersection between religious belief and socio-political movements on the contemporary stage.
  3. Religious Studies with an emphasis on systematic theology, Scripture, and/or theological ethics: Students choosing this concentration within the major will be directed at a more specifically (though not exclusively) Christian education in religious studies. The goal of such a track will be to encourage in these students theological proficiency concerning such topics as the doctrines of the Christian faith, Holy Scripture, and contemporary issues with which the faith is engaged.

The Religious Studies Program also offers three options for students who would like to pursue a minor in the area of Religious Studies. Any one of these minors provides an enriching complement to a wide variety of majors offered at Siena Heights University:

  1. A Religious Studies minor with a core of courses offering a broad and ecumenical engagement of religious traditions
  2. A Theology minor with a core of courses more concentrated in the Catholic tradition
  3. A contracted minor designed to accommodate a student’s particular needs and interests.

Meet the faculty members of the Religious Studies program.

Bell, Ian

Bell, Ian

Professor of Religious Studies517-264-7682
Dunne, Thomas Aquinas

Dunne, Thomas Aquinas

Professor of Philosophy248-799-5490
Raab, Joseph

Raab, Joseph

Professor of Religious Studies517-264-7673
Sam, James

Sam, James

Professor of Social Sciences800-787-7784
Walter, Patricia

Walter, Patricia

Associate Professor of Religious Studies517-264-7674

Learn about the career opportunities you can have with a degree in Religious Studies.

When you graduate with a degree in Religious Studies you are well prepared to embark on a wide variety of career paths, such as:

  • Journalism
  • Social services
  • Religious education
  • Graduate school/ higher education
  • Parish ministry/administration
  • Youth ministry
  • Hospital chaplaincy or Pastoral Counseling
  • Religious life/ecclesial vocation

Learn more about the clubs and organizations available to Religious Studies students.

Students who major in Religious Studies and meet specific criteria can be inducted into our chapter of Theta Alpha Kappa, the National Honor Society for Religious Studies and Theology. Many of our majors and minors are also involved in community service clubs on campus and Campus Ministry.

Additional Info


  • Bachelor of Arts


  • Division of Humanities


Meet Siena

Faculty & Staff

Profile photo

Sister Patricia Walter, OP, PhD

Associate Professor of Religious Studies; Program Director
Contact Us at (800) 521-0009.
Siena Heights University Main Campus. 1247 E. Siena Heights Dr. Adrian, MI 49221.