Jaye Starr Boz is the 2018 recipient of the Celie J. Terry Prize. The prize, established by Sanford Cloud Jr., former Chair of Hartford Seminary’s Board of Trustees, is awarded each year to a student who demonstrates a commitment to academic achievement and excellence in interfaith community work.
The following citation was read at graduation.
Celie J. Terry Prize
The recipient of this year’s Terry Prize is receiving her Master of Arts in Religious Studies and her Islamic Chaplaincy graduate certificate.
She has been a student at Hartford Seminary for a number of years. And while she hasn’t been local for a few years, her influence on campus was significant when she was here, participating in community and interfaith events, and many other activities.
Now based in Ann Arbor, Mich., she is busy raising a family with her husband who is an alumnus and federal prison chaplain. Even as a stay-at-home mom with a child with special needs, if there is an interfaith panel or discussion she is probably there, devoting her time, energy, and knowledge to the cause. Currently, she co-facilitates a women’s interfaith book group, has organized programs to develop community-based resiliency, serves on the leadership team for the Association of Muslim Chaplains, and volunteers on a farm where she has introduced Muslims to collaborating with Unitarian Universalists growing food for those in need.
She also participates in the UMich Hospital Ethics Committee and is active at her mosque, where she created interfaith programming – teaming up with Jewish and Catholic friends to host a screening of “The Sultan & The Saint” or gathering together a lovely group of Christians and Muslims to make Valentine cards for refugees and Jewish Community Centers in the wake of the bomb threats, and holding interfaith discussions around faith-based tools for trauma healing. In all these ways and more, her commitment to building bridges of understanding among people of different faiths and cultures goes way beyond Hartford Seminary’s walls.
For all these good reasons, the Terry Prize goes to Jaye Starr Boz.