Thanks to the Vanderbilt program in Theology and Practice, Sigmon will be serving on the faculty in a year-long professorship. “With this Ph.D. program I am able to immerse myself in a place of higher education and truly learn to teach,” she said. Ms. Sigmon will be going to faculty meetings, serving on committees, going to worship, and teaching. “It’s such a gift and I’m so excited to be doing this at Saint Paul,” she said. Sigmon will co-teach a preaching class with Saint Paul preaching professor Dr. Mike Graves this fall and a course entitled, “Preaching in the Digital Age” based on her dissertation research this spring.
Both Rev. Sigmon and Dr. Graves are Disciples of Christ pastors which was a major draw for her to come to Saint Paul for her Ph.D. work. Sigmon is also a process theologian so she is interested in working with Dr. Nancy Howell. “Saint Paul School of Theology has a legendary trajectory of faculty. I have treasured the books of wonderful, powerful, theological educators such as Dr. Eugene Lowry and Dr. Emilie Townes,” she said.
Sigmon has a true spark in her eye when speaking about her research. “I’m really interested in the ways we can frame the preaching ministry beyond just the moment in the pulpit and the pew. People no longer have to wait until Sunday to learn how the church will respond to the news of the day. We are moving past that.” She looks forward to teaching seminarians about how to be effective pastors in the age of social media. “Younger students know nothing but social media. I want them to feel that does not need to be a separate part of their lives. Social media can complement Sunday worship and the ministry of Gospel proclamation.”
Casey appreciates a balance in life and shared that she has a love for comedy. “I did some improv work while working as the House Manager of a Comedy Club in North Carolina before hearing about my acceptance to the Ph.D. program,” she said. “I’ve learned that you can use some of the same skills in preaching and worship. Anything can happen at church and having a spirit of improv can help you to speak on your feet.”