- » John Rok
Office Location: Marian Hall, Room 102
- B.A., Seminary of Our Lady of Providence
- M.A., S.T.B., Catholic University of Louvain
- M.Ed., Providence College
- C.A.G.S., Salve Regina University
My current research and academic interests include a focus on the intersection of religion and political discourse in the United States. I am interested in the varied interpretations and applications of religious freedom and the separation of church and state in the American experience. I believe this topic is as timely and significant today as it was in the post-Reformation era, in the pilgrim and Puritan experiences and, specifically, in Newport's history under the Rhode Island colonial charter of 1663. I am also interested in integrating curriculum-based community service learning and civic engagement into my courses. I have collaborated with staff in the Office of Community Service on a Nicaragua service trip program. In conjunction with that office, I led international service trips to Nicaragua in 2012, 2014 and 2015, with another trip scheduled for January 2016.
I have been associated with Salve Regina for more than 30 years, during which time I worked primarily in student affairs. During that time I held a faculty appointment and taught a course in religious studies each semester as an adjunct member of the Department of Religious and Theological Studies. I transitioned to full-time faculty status in 2012 and now enjoy the opportunity to engage students, particularly first-year students, in the intellectual life of the University – the fundamental reason why we are all here. I believe academics constitute the heart of the University mission and that a sincere and rigorous study of religion represents the soul of that experience. The study of the historic role of religion, the ethical and moral challenges presented by contemporary society, and an appreciation for the great religious traditions found around the world are essential for developing "responsible world citizens." Finally, I enjoy my roles as NCAA faculty athletics representative and faculty liaison to the Office of Community Service. Participation in athletics and service provide co-curricular opportunities for students to develop qualities such as teamwork, commitment, compassion, fair play, justice and other character traits and life skills that will make them engaged public citizens. It is a privilege and personally rewarding for me to be involved with students in these ways.