The Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina (BEMCSC) have a vital mission in promoting the work of the gospel through its churches in South Carolina. Likewise, the Clamp Divinity School has as its mission the equipping of ministers for the work of the gospel.
While the BEMCSC has a warm affiliation with two excellent undergraduate colleges, it does not have a formal relationship with a seminary or divinity school in the state. We would like to propose the establishment of a formal partnership between the Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina (BEMCSC) and the Clamp Divinity School of Anderson University.
We believe that such a partnership would be mutually beneficial for both parties. The Clamp Divinity School could provide a home-state source of Baptist graduate theological education for future pastors and leaders of the BEMCSC, encouraging those ministers to stay in South Carolina for ministry training (and thus more likely to stay and serve churches in our state). Nearly half of the Clamp Divinity School enrollment is African-American, and students will find a warm relationship and welcoming environment in a setting that emphasizes faithful biblical scholarship and an intensely practical curriculum.
In addition, because the Clamp Divinity School offers both a Master of Divinity (75 hours) and Master of Ministry (42 hours) in traditional daytime, hybrid, and online formats, students will have convenient options that fit their needs - from being a traditional full-time M.Div. student to completing a degree online while still serving in their home church. Clamp students also enjoy a significantly lower cost of tuition (currently $312 per credit hour) than most seminaries in our region.
Clamp also offers a Doctor of Ministry in Biblical Preaching for students who wish to gain additional preparation for excellence in ministry service. This fall we anticipate launching a Doctor of Ministry in 21st Century Ministry, providing an advanced degree with a focus on issues and trends in church leadership. We are currently studying a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in leadership, which is projected to launch in the fall of 2018. Anderson University and Clamp Divinity School are fully accredited through SACS.
Once a formal partnership is established, we would ask the BEMCSC to regularly recognize this relationship as you communicate with member churches. We will commit $3,000 annually to purchase ads in BEMCSC publications or participation in BEMCSC events, including the annual convention. We will also seek opportunities for BEMCSC leaders to participate and have leadership opportunities within the Divinity School and College of Christian Studies.
As part of this partnership, Clamp will provide a one-time, $1,000 scholarship for any pastor or recommended member of a BEMCSC church, applicable to the first Master of Divinity or Master of Ministry course taken through Clamp Divinity School. This would offer a mutual benefit: it would give BEMCSC value for your partnership with us, and it will benefit the University by encouraging students to apply for and begin a graduate degree through Clamp Divinity School.
We believe such an arrangement would be of great benefit to both the Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina and to Clamp Divinity School, and we welcome the opportunity to explore opportunities for a mutually beneficial partnership.
Approved - January 4, 2017
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