New Hybrid M.Div. Program Appeals to Students Far and Near
Claremont School of Theology recently launched a new hybrid 72-unit Master of Divinity degree program. This program combines online education and intensive, in-person meetings in order to make CST’s high-level theological education available to long-distance students.
Launching this hybrid program is a significant development for CST. According to Prof. Sheryl A. Kujawa-Holbrook, Vice President of Academic Affairs and Professor of Practical Theology and Religious Education, numerous CST students travel to campus from distant cities, such as Las Vegas and Phoenix. In addition, there is a growing number of professionals who desire a theological education, but cannot easily leave their jobs and families to attend classes. CST’s hybrid M.Div. program makes it possible for working professionals to fit pursuing an advanced degree into their busy schedules.
“CST has always valued academic rigor and depth,” said Kujawa-Holbrook. “This hybrid program gives us the opportunity to reach as many students as possible while ensuring that they will receive the same individual attention from the professors.”
Students also have the option of completing the Master of Arts in Ministry, Leadership, and Service program in 18 months through the same hybrid delivery system. Spiritual and pastoral formation are key components of the curricula because both programs are designed to prepare students to become chaplains, non-profit organizers, and ministers. A common misconception about online education is that students do not have the opportunity to develop lasting relationships with one another. Prof. Kujawa-Holbrook explains that, in fact, the opposite is true. “I have taught hybrid programs in other schools and have found that dedicated students do develop close relationships and build intimate communities throughout the program.”
According to Andrew Dreitcer, Associate Professor of Spirituality, “The occasional, intensive, in-person meetings create a very close, supportive community among the students. Since my courses are spiritual-practice-based the process of engaging in practices, posting online, and reading each week helps students develop a rhythm of spiritual practice that really does form their spiritual lives.”
To request more information about CST's new hybrid M.Div. program click here.
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