Student Recruitment Discussion
At the recent AGM the Task Group on Student Recruitment made a presentation outlining some of their research. Click here for their report on student recruitment . (It’s interesting stuff.)
At the end of their report are a few discussion questions. We invite you to leave a comment with your thoughts. (Or if you don’t want to go public with your opinions, you can write directly to the Principal at email@example.com.)
Here are the questions:
- Likes – If you are or were a student, what brought you to CCS and what kept you here? If you weren’t a student, what draws you and keeps you connected? How would you use that experience to encourage other students to enrol at CCS?
- Strengths – What are the unique strengths and gifts that CCS possesses? What steps should we take now to make them know and used by the wider community?
- Looking ahead – What are your hopes and fears for the future of diaconal ministry (Anglican and United)? How should CCS promote or adapt its program (a) if our status as a testamur granting institution for the United Church of Canada were to change? (b) in order to accommodate Anglican ecclesiology and structures?
Thanks for engaging these questions.
1. I came to CCS because I was a lay leader in my congregation. I filled in as study leader in our Friday women’s study group. I joined with others to plan retreats. I saw an 8 1/2x11poster one day advertising the 3 week LDM. The LDM was truly a transformational event! I had only planned to audit the LDM. I decided I needed to do the assignment to help me sort through my experience. So I did.
Two years later, I decided to take the Pastoral Care Year. Then the Social Ministry Year, then the Ed Year. I could not have committed to all of them at one time. It would have been overwhelming. I loved the challenge of the theology and how studying at CCS helped me to re-work my faith and my life.
I think it is very important to reach out to those in the church or at the edges of the church who struggle with literalism and the thought that they cannot question. In these days of declining church attendance and increasing looking outside the institutional church for spiritual life, CCS may find a place to expose those marginal church folks to new and more relevant theology.
I think that CCS needs to increase the emphasis on lay education. There is a very limited number of ordered clergy to be trained. The number of lay folks is much larger-although also often less interested in study at depth and less able to devote the time and resources to study. The future of the christian faith lays in an educated and motivated laity.
Response from Alice Hanson, integrating student of CCS
I was drawn to CCS and stayed there because of their diaconal vision of justice, community, diversity, creativity and relational living. The process of learning embraced a powerful life-long model of ‘Reflection – Action – Reflection’ that has significantly shaped my life and living in relationship. I was strongly drawn specifically to the ‘circle’ learning, a model so closely related to life and ministry within our faith communities.
These gifts of CCS are coupled for me with a strong theological model within all the assignments and within our circle sharing as well as with ever-growing group facilitation skills throughout the four years. My learning throughout these four years will always be a strong asset and gift that I can offer in my life and ministry in the years to come. CCS will continue to be alive and well in my living and ministry.
What better reasons to come and make CCS a part of your life and learning experience!
As CCS continues to look ahead, I encourage CCS to strength their ties with other theological places of study, developing modules that will bring students from across Canada to CCS for credits in their ongoing fields of study. The modules, specifically of LDM, justice, pastoral care and in education all cross over into other courses of study at universities and colleges across Canada. What if LDM or Christian Education, for example, held credit value in other courses towards Teaching Certifications at other Universities? What if the justice year became a part of the social work programs of other universities? How could more of the modules at CCS become part of the ‘ordination’ program at St. Andrew’s so that there was more interweaving of both programs? Conversation with other academic programs could reach out to many more possibilities for recruitment across our country.
Blessings CCS in your ongoing discernment! Alice Hanson
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