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Master of Arts in Pastoral Care and Counseling (MAPCC)

The Master of Arts in Pastoral Care and Counseling (MAPCC) provides academic and professional training needed in order for you to provide ministerial support and counseling within a variety of settings. This program will equip you with the skills necessary to effectively integrate theology and pastoral education (inclusive of, but not limited to the study of human development, crisis intervention and counseling, and pathology) into your ministerial practice.
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Kimberly Chin
I was interested in studying mental health at a seminary because I wanted my clinical practice to be informed by and integrated with faith even if I end up working in secular counseling settings. Out of the various seminaries I looked into, Garrett-Evangelical definitely stood out because it matched all my core values. - Kimberly Chin

Clinical Track Option

The Master of Arts in Pastoral Care and Counseling Clinical Track is a 65-hour degree that gives you the clinical training and academic coursework necessary to sit for the Illinois state licensure exam for professional counselors. Garrett-Evangelical partners with and Northwestern University and The Center for Religion and Psychotherapy of Chicago (CRPC) to provide the necessary clinical courses for licensure in Illinois, with the bulk of the clinical courses being at CRPC.

During my time as an intern [for the Center for Religion and Psychotherapy], I worked with people struggling with depression, anxiety, trauma, and LGBTQ-related trauma and issues. I have seen that my time as a deacon in the Louisiana Conference will be best served as a therapist for young people and youth, in consultation with pastors and church staff. I enjoy working with others to support the church, but I especially feel called to work with individuals both inside and outside of the church walls. - Rebecca Lynn Wharton Bowers

About the Center for Religion and Psychotherapy of Chicago

The Center for Religion and PsychotherapySince 1965, the Center for Religion and Psychotherapy of Chicago has trained students to integrate their understanding of psychoanalytic theory and religious experience in alignment with their mission to serve the whole person in therapeutic and pastoral relationships. Whether your work leads you to a church, hospital, or the clinical setting, CRPC’s formational program prepares you to move within the intersection of body, mind, and soul.

CPRC’s educational program provides a background in classical, Freudian psychoanalysis and the British school of object relations, followed by a focus on self psychology and an introduction to associated forms of contemporary psychoanalysis. The program assumes that religious experience can be (and often is) a vital aspect of human development and that the study of religious experience is crucial in the process of becoming a well-developed clinician.

CRPC is fully accredited as a clinical and educational site by the American Association of Pastoral Counselors. Staff members are licensed by the state of Illinois, and have been trained both in psychodynamic psychotherapy and in the engagement of the spiritual and religious dynamics of human experience.

Renowned Faculty Dedicated to the Practice of Pastoral Care and Counseling

Our diverse and renown faculty bring a wealth of expertise and experience not only to Garrett-Evangelical, but to the church and our global community. They are members and leaders in local, national, and global organizations, denominations, and societies. Our faculty in the field of pastoral care and counseling are:

Dr. Trina Armstong is Assistant Professor of Pastoral Theology and Pastoral Care at Garrett-Evangelical. She is an ordained itinerant elder in the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church, a licensed marriage and family therapist, and certified rape counselor. Her research intersects with practical and womanist theology, post-trauma psychology, and relational cultural theory. She also researches issues of loss, grief, death and dying, crisis care, and the impact of historical trauma on the wellbeing of African American families and interpersonal relationships. 

Dr. Rolf Nolasco is Professor of Pastoral Theology at Garrett-Evangelical. He is an experienced professor, trained in pastoral and counseling psychology, mindfulness and contemplative spirituality, and affective neuroscience. Nolasco is also a psychotherapist, published author, and has vast experience in cross cultural communications from living and working across the world within varying social and cultural backgrounds. He is the author of The Contemplative Counselor: A Way of Being (Fortress Press, 2011) and Compassionate Presence: A Radical Response to Human Suffering (Cascade Books, 2016). His most recent work seeks to affirm compassion as the pulsating heartbeat of Christian theology and praxis through the hermeneutical perspectives of brain science, psychology, and practical theology. Nolasco is currently working on two books, namely God’s Beloved Queer (Wipf and Stock, 2018) and Depression, Dark Night of the Soul, and Joy (Cascade Books, 2020).

Dr. Jaeyeon Lucy Chung is Assistant Professor of Pastoral Theology at Garrett-Evangelical and Director of the Styberg Library. Her most recent publication is Korean Women, Self-Esteem, and Practical Theology: Transformative Care (Palgrave, 2017). She earned a doctor of philosophy in religion with a focus in person, community, and religious practices from Emory University. In addition, she holds a master of library and information science degree from Dominican University, a master of sacred theology degree from Boston University, and a master of arts in religion from Ewha Womans University in Seoul, Republic of Korea.

Affording Your Education

20 full-tuition scholarships for students applying for Fall 2019 to any Master’s degree program and 5 stipends between $5,000 and $10,000. Ready to pursue your call? Contact Rev. Katie Fahey Director of Admissions and Recruitment,  847.866.3929, GetAdmitted@Garrett.edu

One Student. One Scholarship.

At Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, every master’s degree student receives a scholarship. Scholarships are available for full-time and part-time students and are designed with an eye toward your passion and our mission. Scholarships range from 25% of tuition up to 100% of tuition with stipends and each year we award over $2.5 million in scholarship aid. To learn more about all of our scholarship opportunities, please visit Garrett.edu/FinancialAid.

Priority consideration for scholarships will go to students who submit their application for admission in Fall 2019 by February 1, 2019. There is no separate application for scholarship consideration.

Degree Requirements

The Master of Arts in Pastoral Care and Counseling is a 48-hour program. Students have the option to take 3-12 additional hours to complete denominational ordination requirements. This degree is most often completed in two years for students enrolled full time.

Those who chose the clinical track option will be required to complete a total of 65-credit hours to fulfill the requirements of the MAPCC. This degree track is most often completed in three years for students enrolled full time.

Online Learning

While we honor the traditional methods of instruction and rich heritage of academia, we also embrace non-traditional methods such as online learning and hybrid classes. The maximum number of courses which may be taken in an online format is 1/2 of the degree. Students receiving advanced standing or transfer can take no more than 1/2 of remaining credits toward the degree in an online format. Students seeking ordination should check with the appropriate church authorities to see if there are more specific guidelines that must be met.

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Dual Degree Options

Contact our Admissions Office at GetAdmitted@Garrett.edu for more information on how to do a dual degree at Garrett-Evangelical.

Master of Divinity and Master of Arts

Students can round out their Master of Arts degree with the Master of Divinity degree. The MDiv/MA allows students to become specialists in the area of their MA degree while broadening their theological, spiritual, and leadership foundations through the Master of Divinity. You can learn more about the MDiv degree at Garrett.edu/MDiv.

Admission Requirements

  • Graduation from an accredited college or university
  • An undergraduate grade point average of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale
  • Proficiency in the English language

Admission Process

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. The priority application deadline for scholarship consideration is February 1st. The Admissions Committee reserves the right to determine, in its sole judgment, whether an applicant is a suitable candidate for a specific degree program or for the vocation that the program represents. International student applications are due by March 1st.

Applying for the Clinical Track

Students interested in the clinical track must first apply to Garrett-Evangelical's MAPCC program and following their first semester, they will apply to CRPC's program. Please note: Acceptance into the Garrett-Evangelical MAPCC program does not guarantee acceptance into the clinical program at CRPC. Each institution has its own admissions process and students are are strongly encouraged to discuss their career goals with one of the pastoral care professors as they apply.