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What Does the Chaplaincy Track consist of?
Chaplaincy is highly regulated by private, public, religious and secular agencies, and the specific requirements for hiring vary by state and by specific placement (hospital, correctional, military, etc). But the following requirements are generic to virtually all career paths in this field:
a. A Master’s Degree, normally the M. Div. at an accredited graduate school
b. 1-4 units of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE)
c. Further chaplaincy experience after completion of the CPE
d. Ordination and/or ecclesiastical endorsement by a recognized faith group for ministry in a specialized setting
How can UTS help me become a chaplain?
Master’s Degree: UTS provides the accredited Master’s Degree, normally the M. Div.
Clinical Pastoral Education: UTS provides support in CPE site selection, admissions, and financial aid with a track record of placing students in some of the best locations nationwide. Recent placements include Westchester Medical Center, a regional Level-One Trauma Center in New York, and Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia.
Connections to Professional Associations: As a student of UTS you will be eligible to become a student member of the Association of Professional Chaplains (APC) and begin to connect with a national network of seminarians training for chaplaincy and professional chaplains. Select students may also receive financial support to attend the annual professional conference of the APC or other professional chaplain associations.
Professional mentoring: The Directors of Field Education at the Barrytown Campus and the Extension Center have been trained in CPE and are Clinical Members of the Association of Clinical Pastoral Education. They are available to guide you on your journey to professional chaplaincy.
Ordination and/or ecclesiastical endorsement: You will need ordination or endorsement from your own faith affiliation. If you are a Unificationist, UTS will enable you to obtain endorsement from the Family Federation in America. This is an endorsement recognized by the Department of Defense and the Association of Professional Chaplains.
How can I pay for it?
UTS has financial aid available, and we do all we can to help students meet their financial needs. For students interested in military chaplaincy, UTS can help eligible students access the generous funding and unmatched training opportunities that are available through the chaplain candidate program in the Army, Navy and Air Force.
How long will it take?
The M.Div. degree normally takes three years, and this can include 1 or more units of CPE. The time needed beyond that depends upon your specific career objectives and the requirements established by your faith group for ordination and/or ecclesiastic endorsement. Students who are accepted into the U.S. military chaplain candidate program during seminary and meet the requirements of their faith group, may become full-time chaplains immediately after graduation from UTS. Students who complete a unit of CPE during seminary may enter a full-time year-long paid CPE residency immediately after graduation which may then lead to board certification by the Association of Professional Chaplains and full time employment in a hospital or hospice setting.