Union Theological Seminary Academics


Initial Conference with Teaching Fellow

During the first year at Union (in October), students will receive an invitation to meet with the Teaching Fellow to begin the preparation process for Field Education. In the conference, students engage in reflection and discernment about their vocational goals and assess how the IFE Program may be helpful in reaching those goals.

Students may engage the conference meeting with thoughts and questions about possible goals regarding ordination, the completion of denominational requirements, visiting local churches and making contact with possible field placements. Students are encouraged to use the initial conference as a planning stage, a reflection opportunity, and space to receive feedback in order to gain vocational clarity.

Preparing for the Conference

In preparation for the conference, students are requested to bring a current resume and will have completed the Entrance Questionnaire as part of their assessment portfolio. Prior to the conference, students are encouraged to consider the following questions:

    • Why am I at Union?
    • How did I come to select Union?
    • What are my plans after graduation?
    • What are my options in ministry?
    • What denominational requirements must I fulfill in preparation for ordination?
    • What areas of my current service/ministry do I want to strengthen or explore further?
    • What areas of ministry/mission, would I like to consider exploring?

Specialized Ministries

Often, students enroll at Union with an interest in pursuing a specialized ministry. Some students may already be involved in work/service that they believe would make a beneficial field experience. They may discuss this interest with the Teaching Fellow at the time of their initial conference in preparation for the placement process, or choose to consider discerning further. Students use volunteer experiences to continue the discernment process 

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