Good afternoon everyone!Well, we’re getting to the end of our 2010-2011 school year here at McCormick. We wanted to make sure and leave you with helpful information for the summer… just a little snack to tide you over as you begin your summer plans. Today, we want to make sure that all you newbies for the Fall 2011 and all of our prospectives have a good idea just as to what the Association of Theological Schools is and what it can do for you as a student here in the Chicago-land area. Thursday will be our last post, sally. It will have lots of information regarding what you should expect from us this summer if you are beginning in the Fall and also talk about summer options while you’re in seminary. So stay tuned!

Today we wanted to make you aware of a little program called the ACTS program. McCormick is one of several schools that participates in the Association of Chicago Theological Schools. What does this mean? It means that here in Chicago we have the second-largest collection of theological resources and research in the world. Second only to the Vatican. I know what you’re thinking, “no way.” Yes way. Let me explain.

First, these are the schools that make up the ACTS group:

Catholic Theological Union, right here in Hyde Park

Chicago Theological Seminary, also here in Hyde Park

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, located next to Northwestern University in Evanston, IL

Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, in Hyde Park

McCormick Theological Seminary, here in Hyde Park

Meadville Lombard Theological School, in Hyde Park

North Park Theological Seminary, in downtown

Northern Baptist Theological Seminary, in Lombard, IL

Seabury Western Theological Seminary, in Evanston, IL

Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, located in Deerfield, IL

University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary, in Mundelein, IL

What this means for McCormick is that we’re part of a vast network of seminaries here in Illinois and it helps to keep us connected with each other and also allows for some amazing dialog between students and staff of different denominational backgrounds. What this means for the students of these schools, is that 1) we can cross register at any one of these seminaries to take a class there. So, say that you want a history class on Art and Architecture of the Church in Italy, AND you want to go there as a travel seminar. Well, we don’t offer that here at McCormick, but Catholic Theological Seminary, just a few blocks away on Cornell Street does! So, you can go take it there and get a history credit here! The cost for all the schools is the same, (with the exception of Chicago Theological Seminary, but it’s still really close!), so money isn’t a problem, and the cross registration is really easy.

2) What this also means for students is that we have access to all the libraries. So, if you need to work on a paper and you want to use the Reginstein Library located on the University of Chicago campus, you can! The Chicago Theological School is associated with the U of Chicago, so you can use the library there. Or, if you’re hanging around Evanston, you can check out Garrett-Evangelical! Now, some of the seminaries might be a little farther, but you can still have them available to you. It’s a little spread out, but it works!

Here at McCormick the rule is, you can take classes with other seminaries in ACTS in any semester you are here except in your first and last semesters. Other than that, it’s fair game! There are some pretty great opportunities and students are encouraged if they want a travel seminar, or a specialty class with a specific theologian in the Chicago-land area, to check out the website. You can see all the classes offered on the ACTS website.

Peace ~ Shelley D.

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