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Hello, everyone. I am struggling to decide if I should go towards an MTS at schools like Harvard and Yale or go straight into a Ph.D. program. For context, I have a 3.20 cumulative GPA and have done very well in my Philosophy classes. Yet I think that if I go straight into a Ph.D. program, I would be missing out on the education that Divinity school offers. Age matters as well, since I plan to be on the tenure track. Going into a Ph.D. at 22 vs 24 could make a lot of difference in the long run. Since I want to get a Ph.D. in Philosophy, I am wary of how an MTS is seen in the eyes of the Philosophy department's admissions teams. There is the sentiment that if I decline an acceptance from HDS, I would be forfeiting a one in a lifetime opportunity. If any Philosophy PhDs or HDS alums can chime in, I would greatly appreciate it.
I've been accepted into PTS and Duke Divinity. I'm pretty familiar with the theological framework of each institution, and what kind of quality of life I'd expect in each city. I've also received an 80% tuition scholarship and grant from PTS and 33-25% tuition grant from Duke. The standard need-based stuff from each school. My question here is: will either school do a better job preparing (perhaps qualifying) me for eventual PhD work in theology? I'm still figuring out what I'd like to do my PhD in but it would likely would be in theology (creation, anthropology, or eschatology) or early church history. I have an interdisciplinary interest in AI and music as well. The main thing that's holding me up now is that the PTS degree won't be coming from Princeton University, whereas the Duke Divinity degree will. I'm not sure that makes difference in the long run, but that's where my head is at. Any insight would be helpful!
Hi all! I have been reading through the forum and have really appreciated the insight many of you have into the religious studies field and various programs. My post is a bit of a "what are my chances?" and "do you have experience with my situation?" hybrid. I am a current MA (Theological Studies) student at a local ATS-accredited seminary. I graduated with my BA in Psychology in 2011, and, after soul-searching and trying my hand in several psychology-related positions, I decided to return for a seminary degree in hopes of becoming a minister, author, and perhaps adjunct prof on the side. I am also considering the prospects of pursuing PhD studies down the road. I am now 26 credits into my MATS degree at a local, ecumenical ATS-accredited seminary and have decided to transfer for two major reasons: 1) My current seminary has a good reputation locally, but has become increasingly disintegrated. In the year I've been there, they have changed the seminary's name, revised the entirety of their curriculum, fired or lost several professors, dismissed and appointed a new dean, and are soon to change the physical location of the seminary. Many of these changes have been poorly implemented and badly communicated to the students. 2) I was serving as a volunteer ministry director for the past few years at a local independent non-denom church. Unfortunately, I experienced the two lead pastors as increasingly manipulative/abusive individuals, (garden variety pathological narcissists?), and decided to leave. After departing, I learned that a good friend (who also attended the church) was sexually molested by the aforementioned pastors. These leaders have been educated at my seminary and have mentored and taught there as well, so it has made the seminary itself a difficult place for me to be. Those things said, I still want to finish a degree and continue to pursue a ministry vocation. I find myself more at home in progressive evangelical or mainline protestant contexts and have narrowed my search for an MDiv program down to the below schools: Princeton, Vanderbilt, Emory (Candler), Wake-Forest, Union, Boston U. I am most concerned with the school accepting all (or most) of my transfer credits and hope to receive funding as well. I struggled a bit in undergrad with anxiety and depression, and ended up with a 3.4 GPA, though I had a 3.8/3.9 in my last couple semesters and a 3.7 Major GPA. When I took the GRE a few years ago, I had scores that landed me in the 88th percentile for Verbal, 61st percentile for Quantitative, and 60th percentile for Essay. My graduate GPA is 4.0. I have a publication in the works with an undergrad prof and have lots of service experience with nonprofits and churches. My questions: What are my chances of being admitted to the above schools? All of them accept transfer credit, but how likely is it that my credits will be accepted? Does anyone know the likelihood of funding for my situation? Are there any other schools you might recommend for my search? Any help you can offer would be greatly appreciated!
Hello, everyone! I have been accepted at Harvard (Master of Theological Studies in Hebrew Bible - 2 years) and Yale (Master of Arts in Religion in Second-Temple Judaism - 2 years) Divinity Schools, my end goal being to gain admission to a top Ph.D. program. The deadline to decide is fast approaching, yet I am still so unsure... I strongly feel that Harvard would be a better fit for me in terms of its atmosphere, but the specific program to which I applied is a bit in flux (there is currently no Hebrew Bible professor, in the traditional sense. The search is on to find one, and other professors pick up the slack, but who knows how long that will take?). Additionally, both of the two primary professors with whom I would be working in the Divinity School will be on sabbatical at some point during my time there (one will be on sabbatical this fall, and the other will be on sabbatical for the entirety of my second year, after which time he may retire). Granted, I would be able to take classes and work with professors outside the Divinity School, as students are able to move fluidly between departments (primarily in the Near Eastern Languages & Cultures department, in my case). Yale, on the other hand, boasts a significant cohort of professors in my field within the Divinity School. At this point in time, the program there is more stable than the one at Harvard; however, I feel less drawn to its atmosphere, and less excited about it, to be honest. So, how heavily should I factor fit into this decision? Obviously, I know it would be hard to go wrong with either school, and I realize how lucky I am to be able to choose between the two. Any and all thoughts would be appreciated!