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2019 MDiv MTS MA Applications

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4 hours ago, FrigidSky701 said:

I got into Missouri State University's Master's program in Religious Studies. How is it in terms of reputation? I guess this is my only option, but I would like to know where it stands and whether it would be helpful for me to pursue doctorate degree in the future.

It has a good reputation and placement record particularly for students in American Religion. There is a brilliant student in my program (Northwestern) a couple years behind me who went to MSU. I also know someone in anthropology at NYU who works on religion and has her MA from MSU's program. As far as "secular" MA programs in the discipline go, it's a great option.

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8 minutes ago, marXian said:

It has a good reputation and placement record particularly for students in American Religion. There is a brilliant student in my program (Northwestern) a couple years behind me who went to MSU. I also know someone in anthropology at NYU who works on religion and has her MA from MSU's program. As far as "secular" MA programs in the discipline go, it's a great option.

Thank you for your reply. This really helps. I hope I do adjust well to MSU once I go there.

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So I'm applying to do an MA (theology) part-time, and I just got my application in (deadline was 4/15 and didn't get all rec letters in 'til evening of 4/14). 

How long can I expect to wait? It's a noncompetitive-admission program at Notre Dame, and I know traditional/full-time grad students have decisions due this week. (There's no question of funding, etc. for me, so it's purely whether I meet admission criteria and whether they have space in courses.)

I know it's absurd because I just turned it in, but I am obsessively checking the portal all day. I want this so bad.

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Hey all, in case any folks stumble on this thread next year and are wondering if it's possible to get more money from one of the big Div schools: 

YDS just raised my scholarship from 80% to a full ride. It does happen! I was persistent in asking and following up. 

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9 minutes ago, JHubbs said:

Hey all, in case any folks stumble on this thread next year and are wondering if it's possible to get more money from one of the big Div schools: 

YDS just raised my scholarship from 80% to a full ride. It does happen! I was persistent in asking and following up. 

That's awesome!!!

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On 2/6/2019 at 12:03 AM, newcement said:

Applied and was accepted to Princeton’s Theological Seminary’s MDiv program as a transfer student. :)

Visiting next week and will decide if I want to move in this summer to get started on language courses or hold off for a fall start. Either way, I’m very excited to transfer over from my current seminary!

Hi, Congrats on your acceptance! I am currently thinking about transfer to a mainline school from my current evangelical seminary as well. Could you give me some advise on this? I am interested in Duke and Princeton Seminary. I had a poor undergrad gpa. I only attend one semester so far with 3.7 gpa. Do you think I have a chance if I apply transfer to Princeton Seminary? My major concern is my undergrad gpa. I am not sure one semester's coursework at my current seminary can prove my academic ability to the admission office. 

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On 4/25/2019 at 3:00 AM, JHubbs said:

Hey all, in case any folks stumble on this thread next year and are wondering if it's possible to get more money from one of the big Div schools: 

YDS just raised my scholarship from 80% to a full ride. It does happen! I was persistent in asking and following up. 

@JHubbs following up here--can you share how you negotiated to get additional  funding?

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On 4/3/2019 at 9:31 PM, DavidMM said:

As a current BU PhD student, I love Boston and take advantage of BTI extensively. I also know that HDS students don’t take advantage of BTI as much as BC and BU do, since we often take language courses at Harvard that aren’t offered elsewhere (especially Coptic). Through BTI, you can definitely take advantage of scholars like David Frankfurter at BU or people at BC. However, it’s worth considering the difficulty of getting from Harvard to the other side of the river (there’s no direct train and the buses are hit or miss) and the time it takes (I loose about 45 minutes to an hour in the commute between Harvard and BU). That being said, Yale is the place to go for New Testament, especially after they hired Laura Nasrallah away from Harvard and I hear rumors that they want to continue to build their department. Yale also might look more favorably on accepting PHD from their masters program, I’m not sure, but it’s worth considering Since you are only considering a masters at HDS, they still have great scholars, including Karen King, but I’d advise against considering Harvard for a PhD because a lot of their faculty are on the older side. There’s also definitely a difference of attitude and culture between YDS and HDS which is worth considering. If your working spouse can get a job in either city, rent in New Haven will be significantly cheaper than Boston and Cambridge. I think at the end of the day, you should look at the list of faculty at both school and see who is more interested in the fields you are.

@DavidMM can you describe your thoughts a bit more on the "difference in attitude and culture" at HDS vs YDS? Thank you.

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2 hours ago, lux et platypus said:

@JHubbs following up here--can you share how you negotiated to get additional  funding?

A friend of mine negotiated from around 80% to 100% a couple years ago. She explained to financial aid that YDS was her top pick, but that Emory had offered a greater financial package, and so wanted to see if YDS could make up the difference. It helps if you can explain specifically how it'd be benefit you (e.g., it would help me tremendously given that I will start grad school with X in student debt vs. oh more money is always helpful). 

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13 hours ago, lux et platypus said:

Thank you @pax et caritas. That helps a lot. Do you have any insight on the different cultures/attitudes between HDS and YDS?

Being that this is a question I've been asking myself quite recently, I feel a bit unqualified to answer. I can tell you what my impression is, however. Just be sure to take it with a grain of salt! I recommend reaching out to former/current students. They've been helpful for me. 

It seems to me the largest difference in culture stems from the fact that HDS styles itself as a non-sectarian place to study religion, while YDS seems to be more explicitly focused on Christian theology. As a consequence, HDS seems to approach religion from a more secular viewpoint, whereas YDS seems to be more comfortable with discussing religion in the context of how it applies to how we students live our lives. That isn't to say HDS is only concerned with theory while YDS is concerned with both theory and praxis! It's just to say that YDS seems more focused on an explicitly Christian praxis, and that that's relevant for me. I don't imagine these are perfect descriptions, or even good ones, but they're my impressions nonetheless. 

All that said, I imagine people of all sorts of backgrounds can succeed and enjoy either program. I was recently deciding which program I wanted to pick, and while I think I could've made either work, I think YDS would be better for me given its Christian identity (not to mention there's a better compatibility for me with respect to area of study + it's cheaper to live in New Haven than Cambridge/Boston). As a last bit of advice, I'd say remember that divinity school culture can differ from the broader university culture. Both are in the Ivy League, so there are good things about that, but also some baggage with respect to culture. Yet! They're divinity schools, and so they attract a type of student who's probably not the average student at these universities, and thus their cultures probably differ from the broader university culture (in what I hope are positive ways). Not to knock the broader university cultures. But it could be a relevant distinction. I hope some of that is helpful. 

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