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Bay Area Cohort

Bay Area Cohort

Launching New Cohort in 2024!

The need for theological training in the Bay Area is more urgent than ever. That's why we've developed the Bay Area Cohort for local ministry leaders. This cohort is offered at half the cost of a typical seminary degree and features a once-a-month, all-day format to make graduate-level training more accessible to those in ministry. Students who complete the cohort will earn the MA in Ministry and Leadership in three years.

This cohort is uniquely designed to equip and train local church leaders for missional ministry in the Bay Area. It is for next-generation leaders, youth and young-adult leaders, worship leaders, church planters, and anyone else who desires to be equipped with a theological and biblical foundation for the ministry to which God has called them.

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What Sets This Cohort Apart?

  • Receive a 50% tuition grant which covers half the tuition cost.
  • Enjoy a condensed classroom format, meeting only once a month.
  • Journey through your degree alongside the same small group of students from start to finish.
  • Build a theological framework that empowers decades of impactful ministry leadership.
  • Earn credit within your ministry context with an experienced mentor in ministry.

The need for theological training is greater than ever in the Bay Area. This degree will equip you to develop the skills of theological discernment as you lead and guide people in your local church or wherever God has placed you.

Dan Kimball

Dan Kimball, DMin
Cohort Host and Director of the Regeneration Project


Biblical Studies16 credits
Ministry formation with your mentor16 credits
Theological Studies and Church History16 credits
Apologetics and World Religions4 credits

See Course Schedule

Year One

Spring 2023
BT501 Hermeneutics  2
BT502 Understanding Biblical Theology 2
MF501 Introduction to Theological Study and Ministry Formation 2
Summer 2023
BL501 Interpreting the Old Testament I: Genesis to Song of Solomon 4
CS501 Loving God Loving Others 2
Fall 2023
BL502X Interpreting the Old Testament II: The Prophets 2
BL502Y Interpreting the New Testament I: The Gospels 2
CS502 Growing in Prayer and Other Key Spiritual Disciplines 2

Year Two

Spring 2024
BL503 Interpreting the New Testament II: Acts-Revelation 4
ML501 Theology and Practice of Gospel-Centered Ministry 2
Summer 2024
TH501 Theology I: Knowing the Triune God 4
ML502 Transformational Leadership 2
Fall 2024
TH502 Theology II: Glorifying the God of Our Salvation 4
ML504 Taking the Gospel to Diverse Cultures 2

Year Three

Spring 2025
TH503 Theology III: Living as the Community of the Spirit 4
ML506 Ministerial Ethics 2
Summer 2025
TH526  Religions of the World 2
ML507 Gospel Responses to Contemporary Challenges 2
PT502 Theology and Practice of Worship 2
Fall 2025
CH502 Insight and Inspiration from Church History 2
TH504 Integrating Ministry and Theology 2

Receive a 50% Tuition Grant

Bay Area MAML Cohort students qualify for a church partnership grant which covers half the tuition cost.

Develop Deep Relationships

Bay Area Cohort students who go through a set of classes as part of their degree program simultaneously for three years. They maintain continuous enrollment as they pursue their master's degree.

The deep relationships developed in the cohort enable the friendship and trust for mutual growth in knowledge, character, and skills for ministry. Discussions and assignments are designed for immediate application in the students’ ministry context, enriching both the classroom and church life.

Meet Once a Month

Class meetings are conveniently scheduled once a month. Taking classes one day a month drastically reduces commute and travel time. Classes typically meet on a Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The once-a-month format also makes it manageable for commuter students, who live further out in the Bay Area.

Learn from Ministry Practioners

Cohort host Dan Kimball, DMin will help guide you in applying the insights you gain in the program to the challenges of life and ministry. Teaching will also come from other Western Seminary faculty in their areas of expertise on Bible and theology. You will be able to have discussion with professors as you are equipped for ministry in today’s world. In addition to the teaching professors, you will also work with an experienced cohort mentor.

Real-World Ministry Application

It is not enough to master content and learn the head knowledge. Transformative theological education encompasses the whole person. This program embraces a holistic educational model that will also include a highly personalized approach to your own formation as a student, a follower of Jesus, and a ministry leader. 

Other Frequently Asked Questions 

Will Western find a mentor for me?

No. The expectation is that cohort students have a mentor in mind for the cohort when they apply. Western will help train your assigned mentor

Is this an Online Program?

While there are online compenents, the once-a-month classes are in person, and the interaction is face-to-face. Professors may have students submit work online, or give information through an online portal, but these are in-person courses. The only reason why it falls into our Global program is because we may have live classes meet at locations not at Western Seminary-San Jose. 

Can I web-conference into the all-day Friday class?

It is vital to have all students present for each of the four all-day Friday classes in the semester. Please talk with your cohort host and professor if for some reason you can't be there in person.

What will a course load look like time-wise?

Whether you're registered for a traditional campus course, a hybrid course (with content delivered both in the classroom and online) or an online course, you can use these metrics as general rules of thumb:


hours of out-of-class

study per hour of instruction time


hours of instruction time

per credit


hours of out-of-class study

per credit

The only difference with this standard is the classroom time lessened to one Friday per unit. This will mean that other work must substitute for that missed seat time.

How soon in advance with the schedule be posted?

You will know what the schedule will be at least one year in advance.

Will the schedule look differently in summer months?


Will I receive a grade for courses?

Yes. Bible and Theology courses will be graded like any seminary course.  Ministry courses will be graded by the mentor as Pass or Fail.

Students may view grades by logging in to the Student Information System at the conclusion of each semester in which course work is attempted. Courses which are assigned a Satisfactory or Unsatisfactory grade are not computed in the grade point average. Transfer credits are not included in the determination of the grade point average.