School of Theology and Ministry
Professional Certificates

Post-Master's Certificate of Pastoral Leadership

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    This holistic, one year program equips proven and promising pastoral leaders with deepened and expanded leadership that will ensuring long-term effective ministry, spiritual depth and personal integrity.

    Beginning with an on-campus two week intensive in July, participants form culturally diverse ecumenical peer groups to expand their leadership skills, deepen their theological and spiritual core, and explore ways to enhance their careers and their communities, with intensive sessions during summer, fall, winter and the final summer. The program includes classes, peer group experiences, and theological reflection supported by a relationship with a spiritual coach provided by the program. Drawing pastoral leaders from a variety of contexts, the participants meet on campus for two consecutive summer intensives and one three day intensive in the intervening fall and winter. All other work continues through hybrid distance learning models designed to support peer reflection and community building, organization based activities that support personal and professional goals throughout the year.

    Some participants in the program will decide to continue their studies by completing the Doctor of Ministry degree. Others will conclude their studies with the Post-Master’s Certificate.

    Degree Requirements

    • STML 5090 Envisioning Leadership
    • STML 5100 Effective Teams in Ministry
    • STML 5110 Healthy Systems in Ministry
    • STML 5120 Leading From Spiritual Depth
    • STML 5130 Sustaining Pastoral Excellence
    • STML 5140 Companions in Leadership
    • STML 5850 Social Analysis: Skills for Unpacking Society's Problems
    • STML 5160 Engaging Society with Gospel Values

    CREDITS REQUIRED......................................... 18 

    Learning Areas Addressed

    • Spiritual Depth, for increased leadership capacity
    • Building Communities with Gospel Values
    • Identifying and Leading Adaptive Change
    • Expanding Leadership Networks: Ecumenically, Culturally and Interreligiously
    • Increased Capacity for Leading Systemic Change
    • Team Development and Management
    • Lifelong Learning Strategies

    Degree Options

    The certificate stands alone or may comprise the first year of the Doctor of Ministry degree, though additional admission requirements are required for the doctorate. See here for details.

    Admission Requirements

    The Post-Master's Certificate in Pastoral Leadership requires a demonstrated exercise of pastoral leadership. References from communities or organizations served by the applicant will attest to the applicant’s leadership of the community. All candidates must have completed a Master degree program or its equivalent from an accredited institution. Admission standards are dictated by the accrediting agency, the Association of Theological Schools.

    To apply to the program, submit the following items to the Seattle University School of Theology and Ministry:

    • A completed application form with a non-refundable $55 application fee. Fee waived for Seattle University alumni.
    • Official transcripts reflecting a Master degree in pastoral ministry or its equivalent from an accredited institution. Equivalency may be obtained, at the discretion of the Admissions Committee. Students who do not meet the admission requirements may be admitted on a probationary status at the discretion of the Admissions Committee.
    • Minimum grade point average of 3.0 cumulative on a scale of 4.0 is required.
    • Two letters of recommendation from your endorsing official using the School's form found in the application packet. All applicants must be currently involved in pastoral ministry/ leadership. The recommendations attest to the applicant’s religious, moral, and intellectual qualifications for ministry. Recommenders must: A) be someone who is qualified to attest to the applicant’s academic ability and B) be a person who knows the quality of the applicant’s pastoral ministry / leadership.
    • Autobiographical statement (5-8 pages) including:
          1. Account of your life and important events and relationships, highlighting impact of these on your development (3-5 pages);
          2. Several paragraphs (2-5 each topic) addressing the following:
      • Impression of program and expectations of it;
      • Discussion of professional skills and understandings you seek through participation in the program and areas of personal growth most important to you;
      • Listing of formal and informal education over the last three years, i.e. workshops, institutes, readings, etc.
    • Major ministry or church-related experiences, noting whether done part-time or full-time and years when engaged. Ministry experience statement(s) should include the following:
      •  Last three ministry positions held; your position and dates, including functions best describing present ministry;
      • Current programs or activities in which you have leadership responsibilities, best reflecting your vision and ministry.
    • If English is not the applicant’s native language, official English proficiency scores meeting the university’s entrance requirements are necessary. See policy 2008-01 in Admissions Policies for exceptions.
    • Non-U.S. citizens must submit a copy of any and all documents issued by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for entry into the United States of America as a non-immigrant student, religious worker, or permanent resident. These documents include: a copy of the applicant’s current passport, U.S. visa, and I-94. These copies must be received before the applicant can begin studies.

     Following review of the application material, qualified candidates will be contacted for an interview. See here to apply. 

  • Gainful Employment Disclosure

    Federal regulations published in October of 2010 by the Secretary of Education require institutions to disclose to prospective students particular information regarding academic programs that qualify for Title IV federal student financial aid under the "gainful employment" provision. Seattle University provides the following program disclosures on Gainful Employment eligible School of Theology and Ministry certificate programs.