Degree Programs

Master of Arts in Public Leadership

The MA Program in Public Leadership takes as its mission to prepare students to be theologically articulate, critically reflective, and practically skillful individuals capable of engaging with civil society and the wider world as leaders of social ministry and other public service organizations and agencies.

The degree, normally a two-year program when taken full-time, requires a total of 51 credits. Core courses are available on both campuses in various formats: residential, hybrid, intensive, and online. However, required courses offered through partnership with Temple University may be available only in the Philadelphia area. If the degree is not competed within four years, the student must petition the faculty for continuance in the degree program.

Applicants to the MAPL program are required to have earned a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent from a regionally accredited college or university.

Mission Statement

The MA Program in Public Leadership takes as its mission to prepare students to be theologically articulate, critically reflective, and practically skillful individuals capable of engaging with civil society and the wider world as leaders of social ministry and other public service organizations and agencies.

Learning Outcomes

  • 1. Unifying – Developing skills to bring people together across social divisions, in the diverse unity enabled by the Triune God
    1. Actively articulates diverse perspectives, including scientific, ecumenical, and interfaith
    2. Documents experiences accompanying those who are marginalized
    3. Advocates consistently for the development of a shared vision in groups of diverse learners
    4. Utilizes conflict management, business and/or social work skills effectively in individual and group situations
  • 2. Learning – Developing skills in lifelong critical thinking, research, and application through the life-giving power of the Holy Spirit
    1. Demonstrates problem-solving abilities combining biblical, historical, theological, and integrative disciplines with business and/or social work paradigms
    2. Articulates critical and constructive engagement with a living theological tradition, and capacity to engage that tradition with pressing public problems for which social ministry organizations exist
    3. Evidences abilities to interpret historic religious traditions, including their sacred scriptures, historical development, and cultural forms, engaging contextual analysis
    4. Draws on contextual experience (including field work) as a source of continuing critique and ongoing education
  • 3. Serving – Developing skills and confidence in leading organizations and communities
    1. Demonstrates abilities to lead and teach social ministry and other public service organizations effectively
    2. Presents a clear and consistent message in public leadership, grounded in the risen Christ, across contexts
    3. Articulates and practices a sound and ethical approach to management of human, cultural, institutional, and financial resources
    4. Evidences skills to address the systems that cause and perpetuate marginalization and division, including drawing upon biblical, theological, historical, integrative, and business and/or social work disciplines

Requirements

  • 1. A bachelor’s degree or its equivalent from a regionally accredited college or university
  • 2. Satisfactory completion of at least 51 credits. One credit is equivalent to one semester hour.
    1. 1. Required Courses (15 credits)
      • BIB 201 Reading and Telling the Story
      • HTH 100 Theology 1: Creation, Sin, and New Creation
      • HTH 11x Church History 1 option
      • Choice of courses from Praxis courses (PRAX xxx)
      • Choice of Public Theology courses (Church and Society courses and others as designated in the course descriptions)
    2. 2. Concentration Courses (12 credits)
      • Students choose credits in courses at either Temple School of Social Work or Fox School of Business.
    3. 3. Free electives (15 credits)
    4. 4. Case-Based Field Work (9 credits)
  • 3. Non-credit requirements
    1. Spiritual Formation—A variety of individual spiritual practices is recommended to encourage students’ growth in intimacy with God. Regularly offered courses may be taken as free electives to fulfill this requirement, but students may also engage in at least 32 hours of alternate activities (retreats, spiritual direction, individual or group lectio divina, etc.) to develop and demonstrate competencies. Students have great latitude in choosing classical or unconventional prayer forms and disciplines that fit both their personality type and spiritual needs. Maintaining a “log” or dated record documenting one’s time and activity is required, a hard copy of which must be submitted to the Director of Spiritual Formation.
    2. Healthy Ministerial Boundaries training—A focus on how ministers faithfully live out the sacred trust granted them by the church, particularly as their behaviors show respect for personal and ministerial boundaries. Training is offered at least once each year on each campus. Pre-approved trainings offered by synods or other judicatories may sometimes be substituted.
    3. Anti-Racism Workshop—A consideration of the church’s call to radical inclusion as a witness to God’s radical grace, particularly as we recognize our need—individually and corporately—regularly to unlearn certain behaviors while re-learning our real relationship to all others as siblings in Christ. Training is offered at least once each year on each campus.
  • 4. Minimum residence at ULS of one year, defined as the satisfactory completion of at least 24 credits through courses offered on one of the seminary’s two campuses