I recently sat down with MB Biblical Seminary Acting President Dr. Lynn Jost to discuss the state of the seminary in the face of the current troubling economy. Here is what I found.
In this current economic turmoil, the seminary's Board of Directors recently met to do what Jost called "strategic thinking". Jost said the seminary is focusing on its number one priority—the "mission of the school"—which is preparing pastors and other leaders to serve, as the seminary teaches from its anabaptist/evangelical theological perspective.
However, like many other institutions facing lowering enrollment and tuition income, reduced endowments, and increasing challenges in raising funds—all connected to the economic downturn—the Board spent time considering several short-term and long-term strategies for re-imagining MB Biblical Seminary. One idea is the exploration of partnerships with others, Jost explained, "in order to increase the seminary's capacity to serve the valley".
Dr. Jost also discussed a joint session with the Board and faculty held to consider the expanding nature of theological conversations within the Mennonite Brethren Church and how best to articulate the seminary's distinctions within that conversation, and within similar conversations in the central valley.
Jost summed up, "We are grateful for the Board's investment and for the continued support from our constituents. It is also gratifying to have such a dedicated faculty and staff who serve the seminary during challenging times such as these".
Posted: March 23, 2009