Tuesday, June 16, 2015

New Seminary MA Specialization - Ordination Track

In what I think will be my last Seminary Academic Affairs meeting with me chairing (I have one more with Dave Smith chairing in August, I suspect), we passed a new MA in Ministry specialization in "Pastoral Ministry" this afternoon. It is a delightful finale to my generally "creative" Deaning, created with the brainstorming help of none other than Russ Gunsalus and Joel Liechty.

This MA specialization will take 6 hours more than the base degree (which is 36 hours), but you will be able to meet all the educational requirements for ordination in the Wesleyan Church in 42 credit hours. There's not an ounce of fat in this degree, and (aside from one course--Lenny Luchetti's Pastor, Church, and World), this will be the only completely online way to meet ordination requirements for the Wesleyan Church and get a degree in the process.

It will only take two years and a semester to complete, and you will be able to transfer in up to 15 graduate hours toward it from somewhere else. You can possibly get up to 6 hours of advanced standing toward it from appropriate undergraduate work as well. All the requirements for licensure are completed in the first year.

I think this will be a tremendous addition to the tool set of the Wesleyan Church. Mind you, the Master of Divinity degree remains the ideal seminary degree for a minister. It is obviously a much more robust degree than this MA, and it is the degree that hospitals, the military, and doctoral programs recognize.

So this degree is not meant to be a substitute for the MDIV. It's meant to be a more robust option for those who wouldn't have done a degree at all.

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