Golden gate bridge

Application Process

Application Process

Applying for the Bay Area MA in Ministry and Leadership is just like any degree, but prospective students need to identify a church mentor in the application process.

  1. Create an account in SIS.
  2. Complete the Application for Admission in the Master of Arts in Ministry and Leadership (MAML), noting that you want to be considered for the Bay Area Cohort, if admitted. See the Admissions page to begin your application. Specify the Online Campus for this cohort (NOTE: the MAML cohort program is designated as an online program because it gives the seminary maximum flexibility in terms of where it offers the face-to-face classes).
  3. Be sure that your designated church mentor completes a thorough reference when emailed the link to do so during the application process.
  4. If you have questions before, during or after the application process, contact the following :
    • About Mentorship: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Academic Advisor for the cohort
    • About Financial Aid: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Director of Financial Aid
    • About Application: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Answers to Commonly Asked Application Questions

What makes this program unique from a regular Master of Arts in Ministry and Leadership (MAML) degree on campus?

The MAML degree is 52 units. This program is no different in its credit count. The two distinct differences are the partnership with the church mentor and the cohort scheduling. All students in the cohort need to have a mentor who will commit to work with the student throughout the program. Each term students will work with their mentor to demonstrate competency in a course; the church will be the classroom for the student. Each student must also commit to attending classes one Friday each month for three years. 

Can I waive any credits or receive Advanced Standing?

For Master's programs, Western does allow students the opportunity have credits waived from their degree program, reducing the number of credits required for degree completion (this is called Advanced Standing). Students admitted to this cohort are not eligible to receive Advanced Standing and must complete the entire cohort.

I am already a Western Seminary student. Can I enroll into the cohort?

While we are excited you are a student and excited we are opening up this cohort, we are requiring all students to go through the entire cohort from start to finish. Therefore, current students are not eligible to be part of the cohort.

After I graduate with the MA in Ministry Leadership, can I apply that and continue to get an MDiv?

Yes, you can continue towards an MDiv and have the classes and credits from the MAML apply towards it. If one continues after the MAML, it won’t be in the cohort model and it will be at normal tuition per credit.

Is there a syllabus I can review?

The syllabi for the cohort will not differ from other classes at Western. The mentor supervised courses will have a unique syllabus, however. An example will be posted soon. Stay tuned.

Can I audit the MAML cohort or take only a few classes and audit them?

Because we are offering this degree at such a reduced cost and because the cohort model is going to be a group staying together through the entire experience, we won’t have the audit option for this degree.

Answers to Commonly Asked Financial Questions

Is there financial aid available for this program?

Given the nature of grant/scholarship at nearly 50% for this program, other Western Seminary aid will not be available to students in the cohort. You are welcome to apply for outside aid.

Will there be a payment plan for this program?

Yes. Western has a payment plan for students where they can register in the student information system (SIS).

How is this program so inexpensive compared to the full price of the program?

Since we are partnering with the church, the investment the local church mentors make through their time saves the student money on courses taught traditionally by professors in a classroom. 

How much will my church need to contribute?

There is no monetary contribution necessary for your church other than the support they give the student as they demonstrate competency through their ministry at the church.