Tony Jones has recently blogged about "A Tale of Three Seminaries",
commenting on the enrollment numbers of Luther Seminary, United
Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities and Bethel Seminary. Jones
reached out to all three seminaries to confirm the enrollment numbers.
So far, only Luther Seminary has responded. Vice President of
Enrollment, Carrie Carroll, wrote a cordial response but one thing stuck
out that concerned me:
We have launched a new curriculum this fall that shortens the time to completion for our M.Div. students so that they can graduate with less debt.
Well, I'm all for less debt for students, however, it would seem that a shorter time for completion would necessitate less education. This means that your 1983 M.Div should theoretically be worth more than a 2015 M.Div. No worries, though, as I'm sure academic institutions and churches won't care, just as long as you're willing to work for cheap.
I also wonder it this will be a trend and that soon, seminaries will be offering 3 month M.Div's because the Federal Reserve will keep inflating the money supply and that will be all that students can afford.
Hopefully, this will spark a debate about the necessity of piece of paper that's approved by an institution and we start seeking other ways to validate people's education. So if you have an older degree, crack open a bottle of the oldest Cabernet you can find (unless you're Southern Baptist) and enjoy the sweet taste of fermented grapes and a seminary education of days gone past.
Be sure to check out my podcast episode on the Seminary Bubble.