Feature Story

Science meets Faith

Technology and faith are intertwined in both the studies and career of Erin Green (’03)
By: Laura Dillman Ripley

Erin Green is the communications officer for the Conference of European Churches, which represents 114 churches across Europe, working in their Brussels, Belgium office. Her path to the Conference began in the Mount Allison University Chapel.

Green grew up in Bathurst, NB and followed her sister Marla (’01) to Mount Allison, earning her BSc in chemistry. Starting university at age 17, the Chapel proved to be a welcoming community for her.

“I was a chapel assistant and ended up taking several religious studies classes with Rev. (John) Perkin as my electives,” she says. “I was a TA (teacher’s assistant) for him and the more I studied in this field, the more I realized this was where I wanted to continue my education.”

Green completed both her Master’s in theology at University of Toronto’s Emmanuel College and her Master’s of Arts in theology at U of T’s St. Michael’s College in 2007. It was while studying here that she began to work in communications.

“To help pay for school, I got a part-time communications job with the Canadian Council of Churches. This was where I got my first real taste of communications work, which I really enjoy. It helped that I also had theological training,” she says.

Along with working at the Conference of European Churches, Green is currently working on her PhD in theology. Her thesis focuses on the relationships between humans and technology, an area especially relevant in the communications field.

“I’m looking at how we connect with the digital devices we are making for ourselves,” explains Green. “Working in a field that is really tech heavy, it’s interesting to study this academically and then run into these relationships as part of my everyday job.”

Advocating for various faiths in several countries, Green describes the Conference of European Churches’ work as ‘a bit like lobbying, from a faith-based perspective.’ The Conference represents all Christian churches outside of Roman Catholics.

“In my office we have 11 employees from nine different countries. Representing various faiths and traditions across Europe, you learn a lot about working in a multicultural environment,” says Green. “The Conference is also giving me a wonderful international opportunity. I never thought I would live in Brussels, but here we are.”

Despite her studies and work path in technology, Green still believes that personal relationships are one of the most important tools in the communications sector, especially for non-profit organizations.

“How you connect with other people and build relationships is the most important thing,” says Green. “While you have to stay current in technology and social media trends, I find, in both my studies and my career, that it’s those personal conversations that are really key.”