Religion Department Student Advisor

Meet Your Departmental Student Advisor!

Iris Chalk


Hometown: Yorktown, IN
Major: Religion
Minor: English
Study Abroad: Athens, Greece
Best Adjective to Describe You: Thoughtful

Department Student Advisors (DSAs) are senior majors who are nominated by the departments, and make themselves available to students to answer questions about the department. Iris knows firsthand what it’s like to be in the major. She is available via email, and at special campus events to answer your questions.

Iris Chalk photo

Congratulations Iris
Class of 2024

What Iris Loves about Religion and More!

In 20 words or less, what is the best thing about being part of this department?
The community-building opportunities that allow for students and professors to get to know each other both inside and outside academic settings.

What is your biggest piece of advice to first years and sophomores about getting connected to this department?
Go to the lectures and events put on by the religion department! They’re always interesting, fun, and they will give you a chance to get to know the professors and students in the department.

What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned at K?
The most valuable thing I’ve learned at K is how fulfilling it is to get involved in communities/clubs/orgs that you’re passionate about. These spaces have offered me sustaining connections throughout my time at K.

What has been your favorite class at K? Why?
My favorite class I’ve taken at K has been “Religion, Bollywood, and Beyond” because I loved examining religion through the lens of pop culture and realizing how prevalent both are in everyday life.

How have you taken advantage of the open curriculum or experienced breadth in your education?
I’ve taken classes in a variety of departments outside my major and minor, like music, WGS, history, and ANSO, which has been really valuable to an expansive education. And, it has helped me realize how interconnected all these different areas of study are.

What experiential education opportunities have you participated in?
I am involved in SPEAK (sexual peer educators at K) and ISL (interfaith student leaders).

What is your SIP?
For my SIP, I will be examining the relationship between Catholicism and sexuality through the lens of pop culture, including Lady Gaga’s music and the T.V. show, Fleabag.

What are your career aspirations/next steps after K?
I hope to continue working at “this is a bookstore, Bookbug” in Kalamazoo as well as thinking about divinity school further down the line.

Generally speaking, what is your favorite thing about K?
My favorite thing about K is the way the student body shows up for each other. From mutual aid efforts to coming out to performances, K’s students are supportive and committed to the well-being of our community.

What is a random fun fact about you?
I love Winnie the Pooh, as evident in many of my decorations, clothes, and one of my tattoos!