School of Theology

Carl Cosaert, Dean; Brant Berglin, Susan Bungard-Beck, Paul Dybdahl, Mathilde Frey, Pedrito Maynard-Reid.

The principal purposes of the School of Theology are to provide undergraduate education for students seeking to pursue religious callings such as pastoral ministry, chaplaincy, religious scholarship, and to offer courses in religion for the general student body in harmony with the mission of the University.

Students interested in becoming pastors, chaplains, evangelists, Bible workers, or teachers of religion should pursue the Theology and Religious Studies Major. This degree provides students with the biblical, theological, and religious course work that is the foundation for the study of religion. Without adding either that Pastoral or Chaplaincy concentrations, the Theology and Religious Studies Major degree is ideal for those who wish to have an emphasis in religious at the undergraduate level, but who do not want or need to have the practical elements of ministry or biblical languages as part of their education.

A Concentration in Pastoral Ministry is the preferred pathway for those desiring to pursue a career in ministry because it includes elements of religious practice, and the development of proficiency in two major Biblical languages, Greek and Hebrew. The Concentration in Pastoral Ministry is also designed to meet Seminary entrance requirements.

The School of Theology offers a third major, one in Biblical Languages. This major is intended for those who wish to gain facility in the basic tools for biblical study, especially those anticipating graduate work in this and related areas.

Candidates for the Theology degree who want to receive a recommendation from the faculty to Church employing agencies, in addition to completing the listed requirements for the degree, must go through the process of endorsement. The process of endorsement is more fully described in a separate handbook obtainable from the School of Theology. Those who achieve endorsement should expect to go on into some kind of internship before going to seminary, typically the Theological Seminary at Andrews University, where they will complete an additional two years of study in order to earn the basic ministerial degree, a Master of Divinity. Those planning to attend the Seminary should complete the undergraduate subjects required for entrance and maintain a minimum grade-point average of 2.50.

All majors must successfully complete a Senior Comprehensive Examination in order to graduate. In addition, students taking a Concentration in Pastoral Ministry are required to take Greek and Hebrew qualification exams prior to graduation. Majors who pass at appropriate levels may not need to take the full Biblical language sequence if they attend the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University.

Students who plan to teach religion in Seventh-day Adventist academies are advised to obtain teacher certification as outlined in the Education section of this bulletin. Students should consult the Dean of the School of Theology about courses required as early as possible in their university career.