Strategic Plan and Core Values at-a-glance
Mission of Andover Newton Seminary at Yale Divinity School
Deeply rooted in Christian faith and radically open to what God is doing now, Andover Newton Seminary at Yale Divinity School educates inspiring leaders for faith communities.
Strategic Foci and Objectives: 2023-2028 Strategic Plan
- Raise financial support for students, alleviating from now-and-future graduates the burden of theological educational debt
- Through funds and awareness-raising, advance the creation of a Living Village student residence exemplifying best practices for green engineering and ecological community-building
- Expand YDS’s capacities in diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging by extending ANS at YDS’s theological commitment to mutual hospitality into the whole of the Divinity School
- Partner with the YDS faculty in redeveloping the Master of Divinity program for a new day
- Creating new educational methodologies that enhance students’ global awareness
Why this matters: Andover Newton Seminary is the most newly embedded partner at Yale Divinity School, living out its mission through a creative partnership that has drawn the attention of seminaries, churches, and denominations nationwide seeking innovative institutional expressions. New partnerships require special attention. Embracing YDS’s goals, just as YDS embraces ANS’s mission and vision, is one way in which Andover Newton will continue to anchor its new institutional model.
- Use transparency as a teaching tool, building opportunities into all its programming for students to learn how to reimagine and develop ministries
- Teach students how to participate in and facilitate tough conversations about topics where people have strong feelings and disagree with one another
- Embrace its conviction that ministry is contextual, and rooted in relationships, by getting to know the city of New Haven more deeply, and forming partnerships that create ties that bind
Why this matters: Andover Newton educates students for ministry in locally governed faith traditions, whereas YDS is ecumenical and educates for a wide range of denominations. Flat hierarchies, shared leadership, and contextual analysis and sensitivity characterize the ministries ANS’s graduates serve.
III. ANS at YDS will raise its profile beyond the campus, pushing learning resources out to the wider world. ANS at YDS will:
- Create an outward-facing dimension to many of its programs, ranging from livestreaming events to publishing curricula
- Partner with YDS’s Center for Continuing Education in creating programs for clergy and other interested learners in the wider public
- Expand its publishing enterprises, copyrighting and disseminating new knowledge
- Explore possibilities for extending travel seminar opportunities to alums and other learners from beyond the campus community
Why this matters: ANS touches the lives of its 45-55 students deeply, and it also influences the 275-300 students at YDS, but its products have relevance far beyond the campus. Ministry in congregationally organized faith communities is important to society, and therefore ANS must expand its reach in order to be of service to the church and world.
- Raise monies that support students (see section I, above)
- Fully fund a faculty chair in honor of George Washington Williams, attending to the theological education needs of faith communities historically marginalized by the theological academy
- Steward both new and historic partnerships, revitalizing an educational partnership with Hancock Church in Lexington, MA – established in 1971 – and seeking out new strategic alliances
- Create an endowment to support Emmaus Encounters: Building Community on the Road, a travel seminar program that teaches students to foster connections within and beyond communities
Why this matters: After stressful cycles of financial of ups and downs over its 216 year history, leaders in today’s ANS seek to learn from the past and plot out a better-funded future. Today, all new initiatives include a related plan for fundraising, avoiding the temptations presented by fascinating ideas that devolve into unfunded mandates whose financial pressures land on students.
“Committed as we are to faith communities and the formation of their leaders, we at ANS at YDS understand that, as relates to the church as we know it today, something is dying, and something new is being born. We do not resist the dying and rebirth; resurrection is at the heart of our theology. Rather, we seek to join God in dismantling that which has not been life-giving. We commit to rebuilding, repurposing, and reviving faith communities. Tomorrow’s church’s contours are not yet known to us, and we might not live to see them. But we can educate those who will build, and rebuild, it.” – Sarah B. Drummond, Founding Dean