Bethany College alumna Emma Crossen to speak at opening convocation

Emma CrossenBethany College alumna Emma Crossen, M.Div., will address the community during the opening year convocation on Aug. 23 at 10:10 a.m. in Presser Hall.

Convocation is free and open to the public. Bethany students, staff, and faculty will attend.

Emma Crossen, M.Div., is the director for stewardship and development at Women of the ELCA in Chicago. Originally from Terra Haute, Ind., with family roots in Kansas, Crossen graduated from Bethany College in 2004 with a degree in history and political-science.

“I loved being part of Bethany and the Lindsborg community for four years,” says Crossen. “I was very sad to leave on graduation day and am delighted to return!”

Crossen played trombone in all bands, was active in Bethany Youth Ministry Team, and co-founded Bethany Hunger Ministries. As a student organizer, Crossen was elected to serve Bread for the World on the national board of directors in Washington, D.C. Crossen also worked in career services, co-taught Bethany Seminar, was the editor of the Messenger newspaper, and served for three years as the student representative to the Board of Directors.

After graduation, Crossen interned at LaSalle Senior Center in Chicago and the International Rescue Committee in Atlanta, Ga. In 2005 and 2006, she lived in Hyderabad, India, working as a volunteer with ELCA Global Mission. She then began studies at Harvard Divinity School in Cambridge, Mass., and graduated in 2010 with a Master of Divinity. At Harvard, Crossen coordinated EcoDiv and helped to start the campus garden. She also served as president of the Funeral Consumers Alliance of Eastern Massachusetts and worked for the Outdoor Church, a congregation among homeless men and women, where she served as a street minister and later as executive director.

While working at a coffee shop in Cambridge, Crossen ran into Andy Howard, an old acquaintance from her hometown. Three years later, Bethany College Campus Pastor Noni Strand officiated their wedding in Terre Haute. Emma and Andy currently live in Chicago, where Emma enjoys walking, local history, exploring new places, visiting family, eating out, and learning about design.

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