Erin Mieskowski is a passionate educator, facilitator, and leader. Erin has served in Higher Education serving college students, faculty, and staff for over a decade. The bulk of her experience has been in college housing and residence life, which gave Erin the unique opportunity to engage with students outside of the classroom and tie classroom learning together with everyday experiences. Throughout her years in higher education, Erin became a highly requested voice for advocating for student belonging and creating spaces for students’ authenticity to thrive. She is known for curating immersive experiences to open minds, shift hearts, and ultimately change the culture.
Erin’s experience extends beyond creating transformational programming – they have also built and maintained inclusive communities themselves and consulted with other organizations to create similar outcomes, including creating queer-affirming campus housing communities, and building scaffolding for inclusive non-profits and organizations. Erin also serves Christian churches and communities to help shift harmful Christian cultures and ideologies to be fully inclusive of ALL humans.
Hi! I’m Erin, and I love Jesus, justice, and cussing too much. And for that, I have always felt like a broken puzzle piece.
I’m a Queer Black Femme. Who is also a Christian minister. And I already told you I like to cuss… These identities and roles typically don’t go together. But here I am!
I grew up always asking questions that no one had the answers to. I was called the “bad” kid – I was loud, clumsy, and curious. I knew that I wasn’t “being bad” on purpose, but I also couldn’t fully get why “behaving” was so difficult. I was also the fat kid, the one that was “too smart for my own good” and I had “so much potential” that I wasn’t living up to.
I didn’t think anything of any of this until 2020 happened and all of the systems and structures I had built over my life fell apart. I spent 9 days in a mental health hospital, and that was the best 9 days I have ever been given. While that stay didn’t “fix” me, I found out that I wasn’t broken and went on a journey to find out who I am.
Over 2 years after that 9 day stay, I was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD), Combined Type, and EVERYTHING in my world made sense. Not only am I a “rebel just for kicks”, but my brain is literally wired differently! I see things that others may not. I interpret things differently. All of those things I was called as a kid are false – I wasn’t bad! I was misunderstood! I wasn’t lazy or unmotivated – I am just motivated by different things!
I’ve since started to embrace the identity of a broken puzzle piece, to the point where I got it tattooed over my heart. I’m okay as I am, and no one will ever again convince me otherwise.