1. Has a superbly-trained faculty from places like Cambridge, Duke, and Harvard who present at Society of Biblical Literature, American Academy of Religion, and Evangelical Theological Society, and publish widely in both popular settings and academic journals.
2. Emphasizes developing the Christian character and spiritual formation of the student.
3. Trains students in uniquely practical and academically rigorous ways in the areas of leadership, marriage and family therapy, and children's ministry.
4. Is located close to a marvelous variety of urban, hipster, edgy churches and ministries as well as megachurches in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area.
5. Is less than 20 minutes from the centers of both Minneapolis and St. Paul. Minneapolis-St. Paul is rated among the highest places to live in terms of physical health, parks, sports, arts, family life, economic growth, and affordability. See Infographic: 2013 Chart Topping American City: Minneapolis/Saint Paul (Aug 2, 2013).
6. Has a medium-sized faculty which facilitates personal interaction between students and faculty. The faculty is also warmly supportive of women in ministry and encouraging to people from diverse backgrounds.
7. Is part of and shares the facilities of Bethel University--one of the largest of the Christian colleges. The seminary is located just a hundred yards along Valentine Lake from the gorgeous multi-million dollar student center--complete with leather chairs, coffee shop, dining center, and wireless internet. With permission, one might even take an elective or guided study with the excellent undergraduate faculty in biblical and theological studies or even integrate theological reflection with an art, history, science, or literature course.
8. Hits the liberal to conservative spectrum in a way that will resonate with many young evangelicals.
9. Is one of the most experienced schools in having their full-time faculty teach quality online and hybrid courses. It is at the forefront of schools offering seminary education to those already in ministry who want to take courses online and in 1-week intensives.
10. Offers many of these strengths through its East and West coast campuses: Seminary of the East in New England (Auburn, MA) and Washington, DC (Landover, MD) and Bethel Seminary San Diego.
Of all the seminaries and divinity schools out there, Bethel is truly one of the top schools I would encourage people to consider. The graduates end up being very fine ministry practitioners--biblically and theologically-grounded, innovative, emotionally healthy, intellectually-serious, and well-rounded. So, crank through that application, register for a class online, and get started. Or stop by and sit in on a class and meet some students and faculty--say hello to me when you're here. We'd love to have you join us.