One of our primary requirements is the establishment of mentoring relationships. It is our conviction that mentoring relationships are essential for personal growth. They help take the learning activities from the classroom into the field. Today, many pastors and ministry leaders are relatively isolated from help that they could receive from others around them. We believe that the most effective learning environment includes not just mentoring relationships, but mentor directed learning which allows for an individualized approach while at the same time providing the necessary direction and guidance for each student. The mentoring process provides the necessary evaluation, support and certification that requirements have been met.

Group of Students Talking with InstructorIt is not required that the mentor be in such close geographical proximity that the student could physically meet with them, however, it is recommended since face-to-face contact is much warmer and generally more effective than a phone call or even a conversation via Skype or other internet resources. Students are required to schedule at least one meeting monthly with their mentor. The purpose of the meeting is threefold: (1) discussion of where they are personally (emotional state, family, ministry, personal spiritual disciplines, etc.), (2) discussion of experience and academic progress in your studies, (3) plans for next month (personally and professionally)—these plans should specifically address areas of concern identified in first question.

Mentors are required to do an annual assessment of each student they mentor which becomes part of the student’s portfolio.