Field Education

CDSP Field Education, 2012 grad Steve Yurosko

At CDSP, ministry is learned not only in the classroom but also in pulpits, hospitals, and vestry meetings. Field Education, in which students serve local parishes, agencies, or chaplaincies, is a vital, integral part of the M.Div. program.

The School for Deacons of the Diocese of California, with offices on the CDSP campus, manages CDSP’s field education program. The School for Deacons manages all aspects of the Field Education Program, including placement, learning contracts, weekly seminars, and evaluations.

Dr. Roderick Dugliss, rdugliss@cdsp.edu, Dean of the School for Deacons, is Director of Field Education. Kate Salinaro, deaconk1@comcast.net, is Coordinator of Field Education with primary responsibility for placement and site procedures.

The School for Deacons office is on the first floor of Shires Hall.

First-year M.Div. students are encouraged to experience the wide variety of ministries in the Bay Area. Within 50 miles of CDSP, dozens of Episcopal congregations serve urban, suburban, and rural communities, which include a wide variety of people of diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Many ministries reach out to all sorts and conditions of people—to the elderly, mental patients, substance abusers, prisoners, homeless people, and the dying. There are also several chaplaincies in hospitals and universities.

Second-year M.Div. students, and many in the third year, spend eight hours each week in concurrent field education, working with experienced, trained supervisors. The student meets regularly with the supervisor for theological reflection on the experience of ministry. Additional feedback is given by committees of lay persons in the parish, agency, or chaplaincy.

Field Education students also meet weekly on campus for additional reflection in small groups. The first semester colloquium provides an introduction to experiential education and theological reflection. Theological reflection remains at the heart of the colloquia in subsequent semesters that also focus on congregational systems, spirituality, and theology for ministry.

Intern Year
By adding a fourth year to the period spent in seminary, students may deepen their experience of ministry and increase the number of electives available to them in their M.Div. program. During an intern year the student spends at least eight months in a parish or church institution working under the guidance of a supervisor, thereby receiving a depth of experience that is not possible in concurrent field education. An intern year is usually taken between the second and third year of study. The intern year, along with participation in a colloquium during the following year of seminary, fulfills the field education requirement.

© 2012 Church Divinity School of the Pacific