The MDiv is a hands-on degree in ministry, with professional and academic components. MDiv students learn how to read carefully, write and speak expressively. Students learn the nuances of religion, spirituality, history, practice, and the human experience. Students may focus on one or more tradition, and become fluent in the histories, theories, practices, language, and writings of that religion. Engaging in the Field Education Program enables MDiv students
If your call is to be ordained and serve a church, HDS has a deep and long-standing commitment of preparing people for pastoral ministry. This is supported by denominational counselors who work with students in fulfilling the specific
If you do not plan to become ordained, an MDiv can also prepare you well for interfaith work, chaplaincy, lay ministry in your own tradition, or any other field you are interested in, such as nonprofit work and community organizing. This is true for people of all faiths as well as those who are not part of a faith tradition. Unitarian Universalist students, who are not Christian, pursue an MDiv for ordination toward a vocation as a community minister.
In addition, many students of diverse faiths will complete an MDiv before going onto further professional school, such as law,
MDiv students at HDS come from all of the above traditions, many more, and none. Students meet with a faculty academic advisor to craft their path of study based on their unique educational and vocational goals. In addition to the academic goals, students engage field education as integral to the MDiv degree.
Students engage in field education placements to explore various vocational paths. They work in non-profit agencies, health care and educational settings, as well as in congregations or other places of worship.
Students across faith traditions prepare for health care, university, military and prison chaplaincy. Students explore various forms of chaplaincy through Field Education placements. HDS offers courses in chaplaincy, counseling, ethics, and child and adult development, and spiritual psychology. Additionally, students may earn field education credit for units of
HDS enables students to pursue their unique calling through the student-initiated placement process to complete one of the two required field education placements. Students propose a variety of organizations beyond the HDS list such as, The Albert Einstein Institute, Centro Presente, and The History Project. Each placement is
As Protestants, Baptists have historically selected lay ministers, without any specific educational requirements beyond the minister’s gravity of Baptist polity, distinctives, articles of faith, systematic theology, and the candidate’s saving faith. While ordination requirements vary, each denomination tends to have a two-tier process that begins with licensure for Gospel ministry, then ordination.
Ordaining for ministry in Buddhism is somewhat distinct from the ordination track of various other religions and their denominations. For one thing, because Buddhism includes many different traditions, lineages and cultures from around the world, and there is no one standard ordination process for Buddhist “clergy.”