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SemperDiscentes

Thoughts on Boston University School of Theology?

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Has anyone here attended or know much about BU's School of Theology & Ministry?

I'm looking to apply to their M.Div program next Fall, but I haven't found anyone who really knows much about it. The vibe I've gotten is that its pretty top tier (although not ivy-league tier) for divinity schools/seminaries. I know they have a reputation for providing substantial funding as well, but I haven't learned much besides that.

I'm interested in the study of theology/philosophy and would be looking for a program that could increase my chances of getting into a funded PhD program. Any thoughts?

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BU's program will certainly help increase odds at a PhD program, more so if you take advantage of BTI resources.

BU's funding is hit or miss, some of which I think is dependent upon you being affiliated with the UMC. From what I've been told by faculty is that non-UMC shouldn't really expect anything more than 70-80% tuition and no stipend. Some get more and 70-80% is still really nice but rent also sucks! I have a friend at BU now and they said they couldn't find a studio apartment within two miles of BU less than $1500.

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I want to echo @xypathos's remarks about BTI and the realities of living in Boston. Given the cost of living, most folks commute into the city so you may want to factor that into your decision-making. One key benefit is that a lot of BU School of Theology folks cross-register with Harvard Divinity School, Boston College's School of Theology and Ministry, and Boston University's religion department.

However, it would probably help to look at the strengths of the program. If you're looking for a theology/philosophy emphasis, perhaps you should look into Boston College's program as well. Although it is more Catholic in its orientation, my assessment is that they have a stronger theology and philosophy program with an emphasis on the intersection of the two in the medieval period. I find that Boston University's strength lies more so in social ethics and applied theology. If these are where you want to focus your interest in theology/philosophy, then I would say it is a good fit. If not, then it might help you to look into programs more aligned with your interests. 

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Transportation is pretty good in the area, I know of a cohort of PhD friends at BU's STM that live in New Hampshire and commute in on train. I pop into a UMC church here in town who lived in Vermont and commuted to BU by train as well, with the occasional overnight stay.

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