Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary (SVOTS) is pleased to announce a part-time, hybrid degree program in Orthodox Christian Leadership Studies to launch in the fall semester of 2022. The new offering, developed in collaboration with the Orthodox Christian Leadership Initiative (OCLI), becomes the fourth concentration option for the Seminary’s Master of Arts (M.A) degree.
The concentration in Orthodox Christian Leadership Studies is intended for those seeking to better serve their local parish or larger church community, as well as exercise Christian leadership in the workplace. The program offers distance-learning, rather than the traditional, in-person education provided in the other M.A. concentrations (General Theological Studies, Theological Scholarship and Research, and Sacred Arts). The Leadership Studies program is normally completed in four years by part-time students taking two courses per semester. Students in this concentration will complete most of their studies remotely through online learning, and will gather on campus in Yonkers, NY for onsite intensives for one week each semester.
“This is an exciting development at St. Vladimir’s,” said Dr. John Barnet, director of the Seminary’s M.A. program. “The degree concentration is ideal for anyone wishing to explore Orthodox Christian leadership within a theological curriculum—whether they are already in a leadership role in the Church or are preparing for service to their community.”
“It’s gratifying to see our partnership with St. Vladimir’s come full circle,” added Hollie Benton, executive director of OCLI and SVOTS alumna (’99). “Their collaboration was key in creating Doulos: The Intensive Program in Servant Leadership for parish leadership teams, which now serves as the very model for this new degree concentration. Our hope is to equip leaders who serve their parishes, schools, non-profits, and workplaces with servant leadership formation and practice.”
Students in the Orthodox Christian Leadership Studies concentration will study Scripture, church history, patristics, and theology from noted scholars of St Vladimir’s faculty. Additionally, students will be introduced to the principles of Christian servant leadership and receive instruction in courses on building leadership teams, creating vision and change, engaging projects and programs, financial planning and management, and inspiring generosity. Each student will complete the program by working on a capstone project with one of the leadership faculty, who will serve as project advisor. Instructors for the leadership courses bring a wealth of experience from service in the Church and work in non-profit and for-profit sectors. They include Rev. Pdn. Peter Danilchick, Rev. Dn. Dr. James Elliker, Mrs. Tatiana L. Hoff, Rev. Dr. Robert Holet, Rev. Dn. Michael Hyatt, and Dr. Peter Tarhanidis.
For more details regarding courses, instructors, and more, visit the Orthodox Christian Leadership Studies page.
ABOUT THE MASTER OF ARTS DEGREE
The Master of Arts (M.A.) program at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary is intended for those wishing to explore the major academic areas within the theological curriculum without the professional pastoral preparation demanded of M.Div. candidates. Students considering ordination therefore are directed to the M.Div. program. The M.A. program can provide appropriate preparation for further graduate study in theology or simply a framework for lay theological study on a disciplined basis. M.A. students choose a concentration in General Theological Studies, Theological Scholarship and Research, Sacred Arts, or Orthodox Christian Leadership.
ABOUT ST VLADIMIR’S SEMINARY
Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary is a higher education institution chartered by the University of the State of New York and accredited by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada (ATS) to offer the following program degrees: Master of Divinity, Master of Arts, Master of Theology, and Doctor of Ministry.
The Orthodox Christian Leadership Initiative exists to nurture and empower Orthodox Christian servant leadership. It is a national initiative to increase generosity, servant leadership, and social outreach by clergy and laity of all jurisdictions working together nationally, regionally, and locally.
Originating from the Orthodox Vision Foundation and its annual Orthodox Advanced Leadership Conferences beginning in 2017 at St. Vladimir’s Seminary, the Orthodox Christian Leadership Initiative was established as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit in October, 2018.