Faculty and Staff
Director: Kerry Mitchell
Kerry Mitchell's experience in international education began during his undergraduate years, with a six week summer abroad program in Austria. He never fully recovered. His travels have taken him throughout Europe, and to Central and South America, Asia and the Near East. He is an experienced teacher, working with undergraduates since 1997, with particular skills in social scientific and anthropological approaches to the study of religion. Kerry began studying religion at Indiana University where he developed an interest in religion outside of traditionally recognized institutions. After receiving his B.A., he spent two years in Europe, at the Université des Sciences Humaines de Strasbourg in France and Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg in Germany studying philosophy and literature, before returning to the United States to pursue graduate studies. Kerry received a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara, upon completion of a dissertation on the state production of spirituality in national parks. Outside of his academic life, Kerry enjoys kayaking, yoga, and French and German poetry. Kerry is entering his sixth year with CRC.
Assistant Director: Brooke Schedneck
Brooke Schedneck holds a Ph.D. in Asian Religions from Arizona State University. For the past three years she has been conducting research and teaching in Thailand. Her dissertation explores the modern phenomenon of Thailand's international meditation centers, discussing how the Thai Buddhist retreat model is adapted for a foreign audience. Her interest in meditation began as an undergraduate at Boston University, writing a seminar paper on a local meditation center. Upon graduation, eagerness to travel manifested in a year-long appointment teaching English in Japan. Brooke also used this time to complete an 88-temple Buddhist pilgrimage on the island of Shikoku. At Harvard Divinity School she continued to develop her interest in modern religions in Asia, receiving a Master of Theological Studies. Since moving to Thailand Brooke has traveled throughout Southeast Asia, also making her way to parts of East Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. Brooke has taught courses on Meditation in Southeast Asia, Buddhism, and World Religions, all with an emphasis on religion's transformations in modernity. She currently maintains a research website called Wandering Dhamma (wanderingdhamma.org), which is both an outlet for her academic writings as well as a resource for travelers about meditation in Southeast Asia. In her free time, Brooke likes to run, swim, bicycle, karaoke, and be married to William Starner, Program Administrator. This is Brooke's first year with CRC.
Program Administrator: William Starner
William is thrilled to be a part of LIU Global's innovative CRC Program as the new Program Administrator. For the past 8 years, he has taught elementary students in Massachusetts, Arizona and Thailand. As well, William has led several outdoor adventure camps for adolescents. For the past three years, William has lived and taught in Chiang Mai, learning Thai and forming new relationships with Thais and foreigners alike. During this time, he has been fortunate to travel to several neighboring countries including Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, Taiwan and Japan. William stays healthy by running, swimming, playing softball, soccer and tennis, singing karaoke, doing impressions, and being married to Brooke Schedneck, Assistant Director.