In addition to multi-day intensive coursework, students take some classes online and work independently on requirements that include:
Work with a Spiritual Director or Counselor/Therapist with a spiritual focus
Each student is required to complete once-monthly Spiritual Direction/Spiritual Counseling sessions with an approved director, to commence after the student’s first module, and completing a minimum of 1 session per month for every month prior to graduation (or ordination), unless otherwise agreed upon between the student and CHI . [Note: Minimally this means 15 sessions, typically closer to 22.]
Commit to a personal spiritual practice and participate in a spiritual community (different traditions very acceptable)
The options for a personal spiritual practice are multiple and flexible. Examples include attendance at a weekly worship service, daily meditation, prayer based on a primary faith tradition, yoga, art or journaling, and so on. Practice should be discussed and tended in spiritual direction as well as in the Core Competencies Self-Assessment review.
As part of the Prophetic Voice and Social Transformation (PVST) coursework, students are also expected to attend and participate in the life and activities of an organized spiritual community. The community may be your long-standing religious home, but may as readily be a church temple, zendo, mosque, ashram or other community you feel called to meet more intimately for the period of time you are enrolled at CHI .
Visit spiritual centers
Each Chaplaincy Program student is expected to visit and experience worship at a variety of houses of worship or spiritual centers in several faiths in his or her local community. The intent of this contextual learning requirement is to have the student engage with different faith traditions/expressions of spirituality beyond just observation (and, especially, to avoid “spiritual tourism.”) Site visit reports should contain evidence of both personal and contextual/cultural examination.
Find a mentor in a secondary faith tradition
The student should pick a second tradition beyond their personal spiritual practice to delve into more deeply, and find a mentor to give guidance in that tradition. This second tradition should be explored formally for at least 6 months through regular study.
Complete the Core Competencies Assessment *
Each student is required to complete a written self-reflection assessment and assessment interview, which are to be completed about two-thirds of the way through the program.
Complete a practicum *
Contextual learning gives each student the opportunity to integrate theological concepts and intellectual constructs into the flow of lived experience. Students are required to complete a 200-hour-supervised practicum (400 hours for those wishing to be ordained) in an area of interest relating to their desired focus of ministry or spiritual care. This is where each student can test their wings and begin to grow their ministry within the supportive structure of our learning community.
*Students pursuing ordination will have additional requirements for these elements, further detailed in Ordination Requirements.