JRNM 151 students

With over 4,300 different faiths worldwide, religion is a complex topic.
These different perspectives are represented in a cross-section of Lorain County Community College students.

Brandon Lee Bashak, a Business Administration major at LCCC, practices Unitarian Universalism, a new religion based out of Boston.

“[It is] not following the teachings of a singular book, but those of a bookshelf,” Bashak said.

In his years as a Unitarian Universalist, Bashak has visited various religious communities, including Jewish and Buddhist temples as well as a Native American sweat lodge ceremony.

“You have to find what works best for each individual,” Bashak said.

Business Management and Nursing major Yasmeene Younis is a Muslim, and was raised by her parents to practice Islam.

Malak Ayyad, who plans to pursue a career in construction, said people have a distorted view of his Islamic faith.

“It is not a dangerous or a hateful faith,” Ayyad said.
Brenda Castro-Samamra, a Fine Arts and Personal Fitness major, grew up in a Pentecostal family, but transitioned to mainstream Christianity. However, her husband is a Muslim. Castro-Samamra said she believes in God and knows there are many different gods, but it is up to each individual to believe in religion or not.

As an atheist, Alexandra Moen, a Public Administration major, has different views because if God did exist there “wouldn’t be any hate or murder. It is just not possible.”

Science major Gabriel Loring agreed . While growing up, he was forced to believe in God. Now that  he is older, Loring believes that “science is why most things work and how they work.”

However, Rachel Montgomery, who is studying Human Resource Management, practices Christianity due to the influence of her family. Similar views were echoed by Brooke Sisler. She said she was born in a Christian family that is involved in religious activities.

Broadcasting major Savonah Heston a unique perspective. She keeps an open mind on religion. There is not just one thing or one person who created the universe, but that it was an effort by multiple entities or deities.

The tendency to rebel against the establishment is the reason for Cory Johnson to become an atheist. Johnson was raised Catholic and attended a Catholic school. But he rebelled as soon as he could. Whereas Kim Sanoba, who identifies as Catholic, practices that faith because of the feeling of familial connection she receives from her community.

LCCC students prove that there are a wide range of perspectives regarding religion, and it is a very personal choice an individual must make.

Journalism-151 students Hayley Hall, Gina Hamb, Logan Kobza, Ashley Moen, Robin Sukel, Troy Swiderski, Madison Tromler, Natalie Villegas, Stephanie Weber, Zac Wensel and Kaitlyn Williams contributed to this report.