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Pfeiffer University, Wesley Theological Seminary and Union Presbyterian Seminary Partner to Expand Seminary Options for Master of Divinity Candidates

A new partnership among Pfeiffer University, Wesley Theological Seminary and Union Presbyterian Seminary will make it possible for United Methodist students to complete their master of divinity degree with Union Presbyterian Seminary.  Approved on Jan. 27 by the University Senate of the United Methodist Church, the arrangement will be available for students beginning in fall 2012.

Since 2006, Pfeiffer and Wesley have helped prepare more than 100 United Methodist (UM) students for deacon ordination. Previously, those interested in pursuing a master of divinity degree beyond these studies enrolled in one of 13 United Methodist seminaries nationwide that offer full-time programs or one of the limited numbers of UM-approved programs offered by other denominations. Now, with the approval of Union Presbyterian Seminary Charlotte campus, United Methodist students who have completed required courses at Pfeiffer through Wesley will have the option to earn their master of divinity degree locally at Union Presbyterian Seminary with flexibility to enroll in weekday, evening or weekend classes.

“Pfeiffer remains committed to providing exceptional programs that support the church and those called to serve it,” said Dr. Tracy Espy, provost and vice president for academic affairs, Pfeiffer University. “Pfeiffer is pleased with the opportunity to expand its partnership with Wesley to include Union Presbyterian Seminary.”

This summer, the Charlotte campus of Union Presbyterian Seminary will move from Queens University of Charlotte to its own location on Sharon Road on land leased from Sharon Presbyterian Church. This will allow the seminary to offer classes during the week and continue its current weekend program.

“This collaborative effort is a welcome expression of Christian unity in the midst of a divided culture in the church and the world,” said Dr. Thomas W. Currie, dean of Union Presbyterian Seminary's Charlotte campus. “Such an imaginative and creative response to the needs of the church will benefit both United Methodist students and others in providing theological training that is accessible, focused and challenging.”

“Wesley is delighted that its rich and productive relationship with Pfeiffer now includes Union Presbyterian Seminary,” said Bruce C. Birch, dean emeritus and professor emeritus, Wesley Theological Seminary. “These high-quality partners provide an especially attractive new option to United Methodists in the Charlotte area.”

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