By Stan Friedman
CHICAGO, IL (June 24, 2014) — The denomination’s Department of Christian Formation and North Park University have signed a memorandum of understanding that will allow students attending one of the Covenant Schools of Discipleship (CSD) to earn credit if they attend the university.
The CSD is a newly formed umbrella organization of various discipleship initiatives such as Solid Rock, a nine-month pilot residential program at Lake Beauty Bible Camp. The project will begin this August. To read a previous story on Solid Rock, click here.
Aune Carlson, the Covenant’s team leader for young adult ministry, said there are hopes to bring other programs under CSD starting in 2015. She adds that the North Park’s agreement with her office regarding the recognition of work completed at Solid Rock is similar to the one previously shared between NPU and Covenant Bible College.”
The credits will be limited to students who:
- Attend a CSD immediately after high school and immediately enter North Park.
- Have taken a break from studies following high school and then attend a CSD and immediately enter the university.
- Have earned college credit prior to attending a CSD and enroll at North Park immediately after attending a CSD.
How the credits will be applied will be determined by a student’s major or minor at the university. Karl Clifton-Soderstrom, director of general education for North Park, coordinated development of the CSD curriculum.
The six classes offered at the schools were developed by North Park faculty and will include Cornerstone Seminar: a Life of Significance, Introduction to the Bible, History of the Church, Jesus of Nazareth, Introduction to Theology, and Environmental Ethics.
Carlson emphasized that the CSD “is not just for ministry majors. It’s for people who love Jesus and want to integrate their faith with other parts of their lives.”
Mark Olson, university senior director of church relations, said, “I am delighted that we have a framework allowing students who attend a program recognized by the Covenant to come to North Park and be awarded credit for academic work they have successfully completed.”
Charles Peterson, dean of the college of arts and sciences, observed, “The agreement is very similar to the program North Park developed decades ago with SVF, our partner in Sweden, where we award academic credit for students in a program that meets our standards for academic performance and teaching.”
Registration for the Solid Rock program is open until July 15.