Prospective Students | Explore Your Calling
Choosing Theological Education
Below are several questions posted by The Fund For Theological
Education (FTE). FTE original documents can
here. NES has developed a response to each question based on
our unique perspective.
First and foremost, if you are considering graduate theological
education as a path to ordination or a form of sanctioned ministry
in a denomination or particular tradition, be sure to familiarize
yourself with the requirements of that tradition. Some
denominations require their ministers to complete part or all of
their ministerial programs in their denominational or diocesan
institution. Others maintain a list of schools outside the
religious tradition that are acceptable for ministry
preparation. If this is the case, your options may be
prescribed for you, narrowing your choices considerably.
NES: Northeastern Seminary is approved by many churches
and denominations, ask firstname.lastname@example.org if
your faith group is among these. If not, NES will contact your
church or denomination to seek approval. Approval not only means a
likelihood of placement when you graduate but strengthens the
possibility of student financial assistance while a
Educational accreditation is a rigorous process by which an
institution is evaluated by an external organization for
educational quality and effectiveness. For graduate theological
education, the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of
Theological Schools (ATS) serves as this accrediting agency. To be
accredited, a school must undergo an initial review that examines a
wide variety of factors, including library holdings, faculty
quality and financial stability. The ATS Commissioners repeat this
process on a regular basis to make sure each of its schools is
maintaining an acceptable level of academic quality. Take note that
while all the degrees in most schools are approved, schools can
offer new degrees that are not yet approved by the ATS.
NES: No other seminary in New York has more accreditation than
NES to guarantee the quality of your theological education.
Northeastern Seminary is accredited by the Association of
Theological Schools (ATS), Middle States Commission of Higher
Education (MSCHE), and the NY State Board of Regents. Why should
you be concerned about accreditation? You can be confident
that your credits will transfer to other graduate schools or that
licensing bodies for denominations, hospital, military, and prison
chaplains program will accept your degree.
When looking at theological schools, you may assume that most
students will be similar to you in age and stage of life. However,
across the U.S. and Canada, student bodies of theological schools
are becoming more and more diverse in nearly every way. Theological
schools attract a cross-section of society, including more women,
students of color, and international students than ever before.
Also, older students who are looking to change careers or enhance
their current vocation through theological education represent a
significant portion of theological students. This means students
can benefit from a broader diversity of academic and professional
experience as well as intergenerational perspectives that can
significantly impact theological reflection and construction.
NES: Northeastern Seminary offers the excellent
dimension of diversity. Over 30 different Christian
denominations are represented in our student body. Thirty-six
percent of our students are from traditionally under-represented
ethnic and racial groups, and 35 percent are women. The average age
of a student at NES is 43 in 2011. Students range in age from 22 to
It is also important to take a close look at the faculty. Though
it takes some investigation, you can learn much about a school
through the character of its faculty. If you have the luxury
of a campus visit, consider meeting with one or two faculty
members. This is an excellent way to experience how faculty relates
NES: On campus information
meetings are conducted monthly to offer prospective
students the opportunity to meet NES faculty and sit in on classes
to help them decide if NES is a good fit. Individual sessions may
also be scheduled for more convenience by contacting admissions at
585.594.6802 or email@example.com.
Facilities and Technology
During a campus visit, pay attention to the classrooms, libraries,
student housing (if any) and grounds. You will also want to
learn about the technological capabilities of the school.
NES: Northeastern Seminary has full wireless computer
capability, a student computer lab, the latest in classroom
technology, and a responsive technology support staff.
Click here to view resources at the state-of-the-art B.T. Golisano