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Karen Yavorsky

Job Title:

Retreat Coordinator & Friends Project Coordinator


Campus Ministry


Phone: (510) 577-9100



Started at O'Dowd:



Masters of Divinity from the Jesuit School of Theology, Santa Clara University, B.S. in Psychology from UC Davis

Originally from:

San Francisco

Why I Teach:

The intersection of spirituality and social justice has a powerful draw for me. With the brokenness and busyness of our world it is essential to educate our students with an understanding that they are called to create a better world while equipping them with the social and spiritual tools to empower and sustain them in that work.

Most powerful teaching technique:

In the classroom, Design Thinking is a creative design process which equips students to be problem solvers and innovators in our rapidly changing world.<br /><br />Outside the classroom, retreats can be an amazing and powerful experience for students. Being away in nature with time to have fun, reflect, share, and connect with God, self, and each other allows students a deeper of experience that can be transformative.

Why are the subjects you teach important?:

Favorite quotes:

If you have come here to help me you are wasting your time, but if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together. - Aboriginal activists group, Queensland, 1970s<br /><br />Live simply so that others may simply live. -Mahatma Gandhi

Favorite trivia:

Recommended visual media:

"Pray the Devil Back to Hell" chronicles the remarkable story of the Liberian women who came together to end a bloody civil war and bring peace to their shattered country.

Recommended reads:

Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion by Greg Boyle - powerful storytelling and inclusive spirituality by a Jesuit priest who developed Homeboy INC, a gang intervention program in East LA.<br /><br />Half the Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, Pulitzer Prize winning New York Times journalists, who argue that the oppression of women worldwide is "the paramount moral challenge" of the present era and when given opportunity women can benefit their community.

Hobbies or outside interests:

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