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Doctor of Ministry in Community Organizing (DMin)

The DMin in Community Organizing brings you together clergy, lay people, and an interdisciplinary group of organizer-scholars who practice various forms of community organizing in local, national, and international contexts. Together, we teach and learn the theological, philosophical and practical skills of community organizing, while conducting ground-breaking research on the practice of organizing in congregations and communities.
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Rev. Dr. Curtis Brown
My time at Garrett-Evangelical has given me excellent resources to be a clergyperson in the secular, public sphere through engagement with community organizations and political movements. In my current ministry as a denominational staff member resourcing new United Methodist churches, I am better equipped to provide training, coaching, and consulting to a new generation of spiritual entrepreneurs.

Community Organizing

Community organizing is the practice of forging relationships among diverse peoples in order to create long-term strategic and systemic change involving access to power and resources. Beyond organizing for immediate change, the hope of community organizing is to create permanent networks of people that are always ready and able to be proactive, and to take action to address issues important to their immediate circumstances and the broader community.

Your local ministry site or non-profit organization has the capacity to serve as a rallying point in creating the relationships that are essential to community organizing. This program provides clergy and other community leaders with the knowledge and skills to help direct and focus the physical, theological, spiritual, and moral energies of ordinary people to do community organizing.

Tailored to Fit Your Needs

Students who hold a Master of Divinity (MDiv) degree or its equivalent from an approved school can complete the required 30 units in the DMin program in as little as three years or as many as six. Classes for DMin students are offered in a hybrid model of on-campus and online courses to give you high quality theological education in a flexible format. Pending your needs and the rotation of the courses, other course options may be available. Once the coursework is completed the research project follows. This research project is tailored specifically to your ministry context and you will be supported by an on-site advisory team and the DMin faculty.

Affording Your Education

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary recognizes that one of the biggest hurdles to continuing one’s theological education is cost. The traditional structure of a doctor of ministry program, where the majority of tuition costs and fees happen at the beginning of the program, places a greater financial burden on the student in the first year or two of their DMin program. To ease the financial burden of those answering a call to grow their skillsets and enhance their ministry through a DMin degree, Garrett-Evangelical has established a flat-rate for the DMin program which covers the cost of the 30 credit hours required to complete the degree and all required fees.* Students are billed in six (6) equal installments over three years. By knowing the full cost of your tuition and fees upfront and spreading the cost between six equal payments over three years, you will be able to anticipate and plan out your financial needs.

*DISCLAIMER: Tuition and Fees rates are based on the most recent available data. Rates are subject to increase with each new cohort. Extending coursework beyond the recommended period of time will have an impact on final cost.

Renowned Faculty Dedicated to Rigorous Academics and the Practice of Ministry

Our faculty in the Doctor of Ministry program are one its greatest assets. They are widely recognized for their expertise, scholarship, and leadership in the church, community, and academy. Each track has a unique group of faculty members whose strengths and gifts fit the needs of that particular track to provide the best educational experience and leadership preparation for its students. All of our scholar practitioners join students in a collegial atmosphere of teaching and learning in which each has a particular role to play in enriching the program.

About the DMin at Garrett-Evangelical

The DMin program is an advanced degree focusing on best practices in church leadership relevant to your specific context. As a DMin student, you will enhance your ministry skills all while making a significant contribution to the church through a guided research project. Through a diverse curriculum taught by our distinguished faculty and prominent practitioners, you will be stretched theologically and exposed to new models of ministry.

To meet your specific vocational goals and needs, Garrett-Evangelical offers six tracks for DMin students:

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

Founded in 1853, Garrett-Evangelical is a graduate school of theology related to The United Methodist Church with an ecumenical outreach. Faithfully embracing the future, we are committed to preparing skilled, bold and articulate leaders for ministry in the 21st century. On the campus of Northwestern University, upon the shores of Lake Michigan and on the outskirts of Chicago, Garrett-Evangelical is a place to nurture mind, body, and spirit. The seminary serves more than 400 students from many denominations and various backgrounds and its 4,500 living alumni serve church and society around the world.

Degree Requirements

The Doctor of Ministry in Community Organizing is a 30-credit hour program.

Tailored to Fit Your Needs

You can complete the required 30-credit hours in the DMin program in as little as three years or as many as six. Classes are offered in a hybrid model of on-campus and online courses to give you high quality theological education in a flexible format. Once the coursework is completed the research project follows. The research project is tailored specifically to your ministry context and you will be supported by an on-site advisory team and the DMin faculty.

2020 Cohort Course Schedule

For exact course dates, please contact our Admissions Office at

Year 1

  • Church and Community (January 2020 on-campus course)
  • Kellogg School for Nonprofit Management Faith and Leadership Seminar (January 2020 on-campus course)
  • Cultural Values in Congregational Life (Spring 2020 online course)
  • Research Design and Methodology (Spring 2020 online course)
  • Community Organizing Practicum (Summer 2020 on-campus course)

Year 2

  • Empowering the Congregation for Evangelism (January 2021 on-campus course)
  • Planning for Renewal (January 2021 on-campus course)
  • Biblical and Theological Foundations for Practical Ministry (Spring 2021 online course)
  • Proposal Research and Writing (Spring 2021 on-campus course)

Year 3

  • Project Research and Writing (Fall 2021-Spring 2022)
  • Project Defense (Spring 2022)
  • Graduation (May 2022)

Admission Requirements

  • Applicants must have earned a Master of Divinity (MDiv) degree or its equivalent
  • At least three years of full-time ministry following the awarding of that degree
  • Applicants must be serving in a ministry setting during their DMin program

Admission Process

Detailed information for the application requirements can be found on the online application.

The next cohort for the DMin in Community Organizing will begin in January 2020. Applicants must have their application completed by September 15, 2019 to be considered for the January term. The Doctor of Ministry committee reserves the right to determine in its sole judgment whether an applicant is a suitable candidate for a specific concentration in the DMin program.

International Student Applicants
The DMin Program offers coursework in intensive sessions twice a year. This schedule has implications for international students and visa applications. Therefore, we are unable to offer F-1 visas for Doctor of Ministry students.