Three Garrett-Evangelical PhD Students Awarded a 2021 FTE Doctoral Fellowship
April 23, 2021
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary is proud to announce Myron Krys Florence, Eddie L. Journey, and Gina A. S. Robinson have been selected to receive a 2021 Doctoral Fellowship from the Forum for Theological Exploration (FTE). This is the third year Robinson has received an FTE fellowship and the first for Florence and Journey. All three were awarded the Fellowship for Doctoral Students of African Descent.
FTE awarded its 2021 Doctoral Fellowships to 16 students of color to support their PhD or ThD program in religion, theological, or biblical studies. Each Fellow will receive a living stipend up to $25,000 to help further their studies beyond the coursework stage.
“The 2021 class of Fellows is comprised of changemakers, healers, and theological educators who are creating space for future generations to thrive in the academy,” said Dr. Patrick B. Reyes, FTE’s senior director of learning design. “With the changing landscape of theological education now coupled with the aftermath of 2020, we believe each of these scholars are well-positioned to lead the field through this moment of transformation.”
Myron Krys Florence
A native of Decatur, Georgia, Myron Krys Florence’s area of concentration in the doctor of philosophy program is pastoral theology, personality and culture (clinical track). His current research interests include finding ways to help people who have been traumatized in the church heal from harmful theologies.
“I am honored to receive this prestigious fellowship, alongside my Garrett friends and colleagues Gina and Eddie,” said Florence. “The connection and mentorship that FTE provides will continue to aid in my formation as a scholar for years to come. I am grateful!”
Florence earned his bachelor of fine arts from the Art Institute of Atlanta in interactive media and then pursued his first masters from Savannah College of Art and Design also in interactive media. From there, he received two additional masters, a master of divinity and a master of arts in practical theology with a concentration in pastoral care from Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Georgia. Florence graduated from Columbia with honors and received the seminary’s highest award, the Harvard A. Anderson Graduate Fellowship, as well as the Buechner Award in Preaching.
Eddie L. Journey
Eddie L. Journey’s doctoral study is in the area of pastoral theology, personality, and culture with a concentration in theology. A native of Indianapolis, Indiana, Journey’s research interests include the quaring of psychotherapeutic and religious spaces for the health, healing, and wholeness of human creatures. His dissertation focuses on the transformative power involved in the act of speaking the names of Black trans women. Going forward, he seeks to expand his study to include other marginalized persons of color.
“The generosity of FTE’s fellowship is not just an investment in me but rather it is a partnership in the fight for Black flourishing as a whole,” said Journey. “As a pastor and a therapist, I am in the business of salvation. Not just salvation in some ethereal, teleological sense. I am fighting alongside those who are straining to survive from this moment to the next. This fellowship, alongside the guidance of scholars like Drs. Rolf Nolasco and Pamela Lightsey, is a prime example of what it means to be saved! I am eternally grateful.”
Journey is a graduate of Christian Theological Seminary with high honors, where he earned a master of divinity and master of arts in mental health counseling. Ordained in American Baptist Churches USA and the Progressive National Baptist Convention, Journey serves as executive minister at Second Baptist Church in Evanston, Illinois. He is a member of the national honor society for religious studies and theology, Theta Alpha Kappa.
Gina A. S. Robinson
Gina A. S. Robinson is studying in the Christian education and congregational studies field in the doctor of philosophy program. Her doctoral research seeks to expand the academic canon by cultivating womanist epistemologies and imagining curated alternative spaces for the thriving of Black girls and their community.
“The support I receive from FTE enables me to focus on my studies without the burden of worrying about financial means or seeking mentorship outside of Garrett,” said Robinson. “If it were not for the FTE Fellowship, I would not be in Garrett’s doctor of philosophy program. I am grateful for the ways FTE nurtures me as a Womanist scholar and practioner!”
Robinson holds a bachelor of arts from Emory University in African American studies and political science. She completed a master of divinity from Candler School of Theology and a master of sacred theology from Yale Divinity School prior to beginning her studies at Garrett-Evangelical. Robinson has spent a significant amount of her theological career engaging in the praxis of Christian education as a youth chaplain for the Bay View Association, a Chautauqua in Michigan; the administrator for the Greenhouse Youth Ministry of Elizabeth Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia; and an intern at the Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church also in Atlanta, Georgia. She currently serves Cathedral of Grace | St. John AME church in Aurora, Illinois, as the youth and young adult minister.
Since 1999, the Forum for Theological Exploration has awarded more than 550 fellowships to students of color and has maintained a 97 percent retention rate among its Doctoral Fellows. FTE is a leadership incubator that inspires young people to make a difference in the world through Christian communities. To learn more, go to fteleaders.org.
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, a graduate school of theology related to The United Methodist Church, was founded in 1853. Located on the campus of Northwestern University, the seminary serves more than 450 students from various denominations and cultural backgrounds, fostering an atmosphere of ecumenical interaction. Garrett-Evangelical creates bold leaders through master of divinity, master of arts, master of theological studies, doctor of philosophy, and doctor of ministry degrees. Its 4,500 living alumni serve church and society around the world.