The goal of field education is to offer opportunities for formative experiences in ministry outside the classroom. Possible field education sites include churches, hospital chaplaincies, retirement homes, university campuses, social service agencies, and local urban shelters. Through field education, you will learn about yourself and be shaped by experiences in the practice of ministry, encounters with the people you serve, and the wisdom of a skilled supervisor.
Our Field Education Director, Rev. Dr. Melvin R. Baber, supports students, the teaching church or institution, and the approved On-Site Supervisor. During Field Education, you are led to examine your life skills in pastoral care, preaching, church administration, and social ministries. You also take time regularly for self-reflection.
Here at LTS, we take field education very seriously. We partner with a variety of church denominations and institutions to prepare students for their future ministries. Field education is required for all Master of Divinity students during the 200-level in the Ministerial Formation Program.
Each student is responsible for choosing a site and supervisor that will meet the guidelines set by LTS. Possible student field education sites include churches, hospital chaplaincies, retirement homes, university campuses, social service agencies, and local urban shelters. A student can serve at the same site for two years or select two different sites during the two years of field education.
Students design their learning covenants based on their vocational plans, the pastoral skills they need to learn, and the pastoral experience they need; the objective is to help students meet their denominational requirements for ordination and become transformational ministers.
In their field education, students learn about themselves. They are shaped by the experiences in their practices of ministry, encounters with the people they serve, and the wisdom of a skilled supervisor who will accompany them in this discernment process. In addition to allowing students to engage in supervised ministries, students are also expected to reflect theologically upon their ministerial experiences.
For this teaching model to work effectively, our Field Education Director supports the student, the teaching church or institution, the approved On-Site Supervisor, and, upon request, the lay committee. With the help of the On-Site Supervisor and Field Education Director, students in ministry formation are led to examine their life skills in pastoral care, preaching, church administration, and social ministries. They also take time regularly for self-reflection.
Seeking to fulfill our mission to serve God by educating and strengthening transformational leaders for congregations, other settings of ministry, and society, our field education requirement provides the necessary elements for transformational experience to occur in the areas of:
Confirming the call to leadership;
Exploration of ministerial options;
Development of pastoral skills;
Deeper self-awareness and sense of pastoral identity.
Process for Becoming a Field Education Supervisor
To attend Field Education Supervisor Training, you must first be approved by the Director of Field Education, Rev. Dr. Melvin Baber. If you wish to learn more about training, please contact him at (717) 290-8733.
1. If you are interested in supervising a seminarian, please review the Supervisor Guidelines.
2. After reviewing the guidelines, if your site meets the requirements and is interested in pursuing a supervising relationship with a seminarian, please contact Rev. Dr. Baber at (717) 290-8733 or email@example.com.
3. Rev. Dr. Baber will invite you to the Seminary for an interview. The potential supervisor and site must provide a letter of good standing from their institution or judicatory.
4. If all parties feel that the partnership is a good fit, Rev. Dr. Baber will schedule an on-site visit and meeting with the supervisor and, where appropriate, the lay committee chairperson.
5. After the on-site visit, the Field Education Director will determine whether the site and supervisor would be a good fit for the Field Education program and will contact the potential supervisor.
6. Before a seminarian can be placed at the site, the supervisor must participate in the Field Education Supervisor’s Training provided by the Seminary.