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Doctor of Ministry in Congregational Leadership (DMin)

The DMin in Congregational Leadership offers the best possible mix of theological education and practical leadership training. You will gain the ability to grasp the broad contours of the theory of leadership, develop administrative competencies necessary to manage an organization, and articulate a theology of leadership to enable your congregation to participate more deeply in the mission of God as you guide other church leaders in their ministries.
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Rev. Dr. Gennifer Brooks
The Congregational Leadership track seeks to make students into leaders of leaders who can influence and guide other leaders in the church. - Rev. Dr. Gennifer Brooks, Director of the Doctor of Ministry Program

Two Renowned Institutions, One Dynamic Program

Through the Doctor of Ministry in Congregational track you will earn both a Doctor of Ministry from Garrett-Evangelical and a certificate in nonprofit management from the Center for Nonprofit Management, Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. You will get the best of leadership training and theological education from two renowned institutions through a set of prescribed and elective courses.

The Kellogg Executive Scholars program provides a practical, flexible, yet academically rigorous way to achieve your specific professional goals. For a current listing of courses through the Center for Non-Profit Management at Kellogg School of Management, click here.

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 Congregational Leadership 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.

Anticipated Course Schedule

For exact course dates, please contact our Admissions Office at

Year 1

  • Administration and Leadership (January on-campus course)
  • Faith and Leadership Seminar (January Kellogg on-campus course)
  • Cultural Values in Congregational Life (Spring online course)
  • Spiritual Formation and the Leader (Summer on-campus course)
  • Empowering the Congregation (Summer on-campus course)
  • Research Design and Methodology (Fall online course)

Year 2

  • Leadership for Nonprofit Management 1* (Kellogg on-campus course**)
  • Leadership for Nonprofit Management 2* (Kellogg* on-campus course**)
  • Biblical and Theological Foundations for Practical Ministry (Spring online course)
  • Proposal Research and Writing (Spring on-campus course)
  • Integrative Leadership Seminar (Kellogg* on-campus course)

*Student selects from a list of courses offered and scheduled by the Kellogg School for Nonprofit Management

**Actual dates are set by the Kellogg School for Nonprofit Management

Year 3

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

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 and process can be found here.

The next cohort for the DMin in Congregational Leadership is TBA. 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.