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Pastoral Ministry

Pastoral Ministry Program

SBU's Pastoral Ministry degree will prepare you to lead and serve as a pastor in a local church or in other ministry leadership roles. Coursework in Biblical studies, evangelism and preaching, combined with a ministry apprenticeship will give you both the academic background and practical skill set needed either to enter the pastoral ministry immediately after graduation or to pursue seminary study.

Many pastoral ministry students choose to add another major or minor in another academic discipline, such as psychology, communication, English or business. Adding another area of study will enhance your skill set for ministry and equip you for bivocational ministry roles.

The Pastoral Ministry program is offered through SBU's College of Arts and Sciences



SBU students

the sbu advantage

  • As a pastoral ministry student at SBU, you will take Advanced Public Speaking and at least one other advanced communication course in addition to the two required preaching classes. SBU is the only undergraduate pastoral ministry program out of 100+ CCCU schools to require advanced communication courses, preparing you with vital skills to effectively serve in pastoral ministry.
  • SBU pastoral ministry students and alumni have been active participants in the annual Festival of Young Preachers, an annual event sponsored by the National Academy of Preaching.
  • Several pastoral ministry graduates have received full scholarships to prestigious seminaries because of the high-caliber preparation they received at SBU.

Faith Integration

The integration of Christian faith and academic discipline is inherent in the Pastoral Ministry degree program. Students receive superior academic training in Biblical studies through core classes such as Methods of Biblical Interpretation, History of Christianity, Christian Doctrine, Introduction to Ministry and Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview. The courses required by each concentration provide excellent career and ministry preparation with the goal of nurturing your personal faith while also equipping you to nurture the faith of others.


Most pastoral ministry graduates have gone on to serve as pastors or in other ministry leadership roles in local churches. Recent graduates are serving in churches in:

  • Arkansas
  • California
  • Kansas
  • Missouri
  • North Carolina
  • Oklahoma
  • Texas

graduate schools

Pastoral ministry graduates have pursued further education at a variety of graduate schools and seminaries including:

  • Covenant Theological Seminary
  • Fuller Theological Seminary
  • Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • Truett Theological Seminary
  • University of Aberdeen (Scotland)
  • University of Exeter (England)
  • Wheaton College


As a pastoral ministry student, you will be eligible for the Church Related Vocation (CRV) scholarship, which is currently valued at $2,000 per year. To maintain this scholarship, you must be enrolled in a ministry-related degree program, submit the necessary application and references, participate in SBU's in-service training program and complete any other requirements.

Several privately funded scholarships are also available by application to students preparing for service in missions and evangelism.