Seminary

Discussion in 'Baptist Colleges / Seminaries' started by panicbird, Dec 10, 2003.

  1. panicbird

    panicbird
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    I am facing something of a dilemma as far as seminary goes. I would like some informed opinions regarding the following seminaries:

    All of the SBC seminaries (especially Southwestern - and especially through extension centers)
    Westminster Theological Seminary (both the Philadelphia and Dallas campuses, especially the Dallas campus)
    Reformed Theological Seminary
    Dallas Theological Seminary
    Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
    Beeson Divinity School

    I am interested in hearing from those who have gone to these schools. Preferably, I would like to hear from those who have graduated from them. What I would like to know is:
    - was the school worth your time, effort, etc.?
    - was the school challenging or more like Sunday School Seminary?
    - what sort of work was demanded (i.e., high level or did-this-the-night-before-and-still-got-an-A kind of stuff)?
    - do you feel better equipped having gone to the school?
    - were the professors as knowledgable as they should be?
    - were the professors accessible?
    - what sort of classes did you take for the M.Div. (more practical classes or more theologically- and biblically-oriented classes)?
    - what sort of emphasis is placed on knowledge of the biblical languages? Of theology? Of history? Of philosophy? Of apologetics? Of ethics?
    - do you wish that you had gone elsewhere?
    - if so, where?

    If you can think of any more pertinent information, please include that as well. Also, if you went to a good seminary that I have not included, then please tell us about that one. Any help will be much appreciated.

    PanicBird
     
  2. gb93433

    gb93433
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    I graduated from Southwestern. It is not at all like it once was. The scholastic level is way down. I pesonally know one former professor who knows for a fact that the academics are not being adhered to. They are below the standard they should be. He recently was removed form his position and placed in another because he called it to their attention. He is no longer there now.

    I guess it's a case of if you don't like what you hear just find someone who will tickle your ears and give you a good image. After all it's image that counts.

    At the time I felt fortunate to be a student there. But today I would seek another school.

    Have you considered Regent College in Vancouver, B.C.? That is where Eugene Peterson, J.I. Packer and Gordon Fee teach.
     
  3. Hardsheller

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    Seminary is not a place where you go to get an education in Theology or Biblical Studies.

    Seminary is a place where you go to begin your education. What you will learn in Seminary is invaluable training for the rest of your life as a student of the Word and a student of Christianity.

    Looking back on it, I would choose from among the schools that offered the most courses in the subject matter in which I was most interested.
     
  4. panicbird

    panicbird
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    gb93433,

    I actually went to Regent for a year. For reasons I will not get into here, I did not like it. One thing I will say relates to your own comments about Regent. Eugene Peterson no longer teaches there. J. I. Packer and Gordon Fee are retired (although they still teach occasional classes...I took a seminar with Packer that was outstanding).

    Lon
     
  5. Trapper

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    Be prepared to write at a level that's higher than college level and documentation of your writing is most important. Most students I know never got high grades due to the above. It's tough due to this aspect. Also, go expecting to grow closer to God and not so much learn this and that. I actually learnt alot less book-stuff than I expected, and I got almost no experince in things like "how to Baptize someone." Yet it was a wonderfull growing experience. By the way I went to New Orleans (SBC).
    Trapper
     
  6. Hardsheller

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    Trapper,

    I graduated from NOBTS in Winter of 1979. You?
     
  7. panicbird

    panicbird
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    Trapper,

    Re: a high level of writing and documentation. That is one thing that I am very grateful for about my undergraduate education. My professors there demanded a high level of writing on my part. And documentation was a must: Kate Turabian became my best friend and worst enemy at the same time.

    Interestingly enough, the school at which I did graduate/seminary work (Regent) actually was less demanding as far as documentation goes (and, arguably, as far as writing ability goes).
     
  8. Trapper

    Trapper
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    I graduated in 2000 from NOBTS. New Orleans was a great experience, especially those cheap but fresh shrimp that could be found everywhere.
    Trapper
     
  9. Hardsheller

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    You had to buy shrimp? When I went there they were free! Well almost. :D
     
  10. TaterTot

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    WEll, I went to NOBTS, too. (2000MMCM grad) My husband is still there in the PhD program and teaching some Greek classes. Turabian would serve you well there, at least in the MAsters program. Ph.D uses another style.
    It also depends on what you want - you want textual criticism, NOBTS is tops. And other areas too. When my husband was an MDiv student, he did learn the practical things like baptism, funeral, Lord's supper - they actually did those things. (Coffin in the classroom, baptismal pool too and elements in Lord's supper.) I think they implemented that around the time Trapper went South of the Equator for a few years. I was a music student, and the progrma has changed some now, but every masters student regardless of program is required to take biblical languages. I think that is awesome, although some students didnt think they needed to learn them. (go figure)
    Anyway, I am confident the Lord will lead you where you need to be. Let us know!
     
  11. blackbird

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    Panicbird!! This is Blackbird!

    Don't panic!

    I finished at NOBTS in '87. Under Landrum Leavell it was a top notch school. Now under Chuck Kelley its still a top notch institution. Good Conservative school!

    But unlike TaterTot and Trapper---back in the "good ole days"---instead of Turabian it seemed like we could do research writing on Big Chief notebooks with a BIC "Clic!"---not much emphasis on "Katie Dear"--at least in some classes it seemed---but I understand things have changed and Katie now lives on campus---way back there where student trailers use to be!!!

    When you get on campus---ask around and somebody will be able to "guide" you to a eatin' establishment nicknamed---"The Dump!"---finest Chinese you'll ever want to eat! Ask Chuck Kelley or Randy Millwood to draw you a map---its not far from Gentilly---over in Elysian Fields somewhere!!

    Also---make plans to attend Fred Luter's church while there. Franklin Avenue Baptist---largest black Southern Baptist Church in the state---standing room only!!! You may not learn "how to preach" in the classroom---but you will at Franklin Avenue Baptist!!!

    While it is true what TaterTot says about practical teaching---hands on stuff like coffins and baptisimal pools and other "In Church" stuff---what they don't teach is this---and I mean this in a fun way---

    The majority of seminary grads(probably about 99%) will be getting their first "real" church out of seminary---most will be in small, rural areas running 35-100 in SS! You'll be "given" a parsonage to live in---most are nice---some ain't!! But don't panic!----but in these rural situations(and by rural I mean--way outside the reach of a mega--metro area) you will not only hafta know pastoral duties---baptisms, funerals, hospital visits and preaching---but you will probably have to know a little bit of plumbing---yes, the pipes at church will bust in cold weather and the Building Committee ain't gonna be around at 12 midnite to "cap it!" You'll need to know a little about electricity---a hot water heater will go out---and Building Committee---well, you know!!!! You will be the one to run the vacuum cleaner before and after a wedding or funeral!---If you want the grass to look good like you like it----you'll have to mow it yourself---either that or just live with the idea that the Building Committee will "scalp it" and it will look all ugly yellow and brown on Sunday Morning!!!!----Get my drift???

    Your buddy,
    Blackbird

    [ December 20, 2003, 08:50 AM: Message edited by: blackbird ]
     
  12. SaggyWoman

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    I graduated from Southwestern, but would be hardpressed to want to go there now--I think Paige-poo hates woen, and besides, they arleady started wiping out the children's stuff there, so what is the point?

    I would highly recommend/suggest Dallas Theological seminary because I have met peers who have attended there who have high regard for it.
     
  13. gb93433

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    Good luck! Recently I asked one of my former professors from SWBTS. He was in charge of most of the Ph.D. students in theology. All that had him were well prepared.

    He told me he didn't know where he would send a student today.
     

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