- University of Notre Dame
- Department of History
- Graduate Fellow (2020-2021)
- History and theology of interreligious pilgrimages
Melissa Coles is a History doctoral student at the University of Notre Dame, where she studies sacred places, popular religion, and interfaith dialogue in North American in the long twentieth century. Her current research explores the history and theology of interreligious pilgrimages, especially places such as Chimayó and Lac Ste. Anne that are held sacred by Catholics and Indigenous Peoples.
Coles is from Loganville, Georgia. In 2011, she received her Bachelor of Arts in honors anthropology and peace studies from the University of Notre Dame. Then, she worked for three years as a school librarian and teacher at Saint Michael Indian School. In 2017, Coles received her Master of Divinity from Harvard Divinity School. While at Harvard, she was a Junior Fellow at the Center for the Study of World Religions.
Currently at Notre Dame, Coles is a NDIAS Ph.D. Fellow, a Kellogg Doctoral Student Affiliate, and a Richard and Peggy Notebaert Premier Fellow.