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Meet the St. Lawrence Scholars

St. Lawrence Foundation generously provided scholarships for two students in the academic year 2012-2013. Read on to learn about the two outstanding students chosen for this scholarship award. 

Thank you St. Lawrence Foundation for funding student scholarship aid!


Michelle Pederson is called to community ministry with people who are outside of the traditional parish setting, bringing the theological understandings, compassion, love and quest for justice found in Unitarian Universalism to people in need. Michelle’s call to ministry began early, but really developed through her career as a sociologist conducting research for a mainline denomination. Michelle earned a BA from Augsburg College in Minneapolis, MN, a MA and PhD from Loyola University Chicago.

Michelle lives in Burns, TN (West of Nashville) with her husband (David), two dogs, cat, and tarantulas.  She enjoys spending time in nature, hiking, and reading.  In her spare time Michelle plays upright bass, accompanying David on the dobro.

Michelle serves the Unitarian Universalist Church of Bowling Green, KY as intern minister under the supervision of the Rev. Peter Connolly.

Chris Jimmerson was born in Groves, TX. For most of his adult life, he has worked in the non-profit field on service and justice issues. He joined First Unitarian Universalist Church of Austin in 2004 and almost immediately became deeply involved in church leadership. Shortly thereafter, he experienced the call to ministry emerging from the covenantal ways in which Unitarian Universalists ground spirituality within relationships. He is grounded in and finds hope through the complex processes through which we are all related and sees ministry as multifaceted and going beyond church walls to assist a religious community in creating beloved community in the world around them.

He is currently the minister intern at Wildflower Church in Austin, TX under the mentorship of Kate Rhode, a Meadville Alumni. He lives in Austin with his partner of 23 years, Wayne Bockmon, and their two aging, spoiled-rotten Basenji dogs.