endorsing a direction
The Meadville Board "endorsed the direction" of the administration's proposal (including a 3-year degree, without an internship year) *and* they requested a "detailed implementation plan" before they would grant their full approval, at their next meeting, in November.
I feel this is a good move. It demonstrates trust in the administration, but it is not blind capitulation. It gives the school time to prove the plan is workable--that it will not only meet the MFC's requirements, it will prepare students for real-world ministry.
I still have two questions.
First, the timing is odd. Why didn't the school slow down to begin with? Why was it rushing to implement this plan so rapidly? And, assuming that it will be postponed at least a year, with the Board withholding final approval, what consequences will there be?
Second, Board President Larry Ladd's letter mentions the "feasibility of a one-year internship as a fourth-year option for students seeking an M.Div degree." This suggests an admission that a three-year program will *not* fulfill MFC requirements. It also sounds like the proposal is basically adding some praxis modules to the usual (now semester-based) courses.
Praxis modules might be overwhelming, and/or they might provide practical applications, so that students "get" it better, and quicker. Praxis modules might prepare people *better* for large-church or social ministries; I don't know.
Like the Board, I am cautiously optimistic and "endorse the direction."