Campus wide, College of Christian Studies

CSU partners with six seminaries to offer accelerated track

By Jenna Johnson | March 31, 2022
CSU’s College of Christian Studies will host representatives from many seminaries on Friday, April 1. Photo by Richard Esposito

New partnerships with six seminaries nationwide will give Charleston Southern University prospective and current students an accelerated and affordable track to advanced theological and ministerial training. 

The agreement with Gateway Baptist Theological Seminary (Los Angeles, Calif.), Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (Kansas City, Mo.), New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary (New Orleans, La.), Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (Wake Forest, N.C.), Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (Fort Worth, Texas), and Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (Louisville, Ky.) offers Christian studies majors the opportunity to complete both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in under six years. 

Dr. Ben Phillips, dean of CSU’s College of Christian Studies, said that many Christian studies graduates go directly into the ministry within the local church, parachurch, or mission field; however, many of those ministries prefer or even require advanced seminary degrees. These degrees are typically constructed for students who have no formal training in Bible, theology, or ministry. The standard seminary degree—the MDiv—usually requires at least three years to complete, so the time and associated costs are often a deterrence to majors investing in advanced education.

“This agreement allows graduates who have earned their bachelor’s from CSU’s College of Christian Studies to enter an advanced-standing program at one of our partnered seminaries, cutting a full year off of their seminary degree,” Phillips said.

Students at CSU may reduce their seminary degree courses by as many as 33 hours and saving anywhere from $8,700 to $17,400 in tuition and fees.

SEBTS Provost Keith Whitfield said Southeastern is grateful to partner with CSU. “As Baptists, cooperation is in our DNA,” he said. “[CSU and Southeastern share] the same passion for equipping students for vocational and marketplace ministry for the 21st Century.”

On Friday, April 1, representatives from seminaries across the United States will be on campus for a Seminary Day at CSU. Current and prospective students may stop by to visit with the representatives from CSU’s six partner seminaries to learn more about this unique opportunity. Other visiting seminaries include Reformed, Clamp Divinity, Columbia International, Gordon-Conwell, and Erskine. Visit the Whitfield Center for Christian Leadership Room 102 from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.

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