Aug 162022

2022-23 Academic Notices

During the 2022-2023 academic year, CTS implements a new calendar based on a tri-term model. This new Tri-Term Academic Calendar is designed to help new students begin their coursework earlier while providing more opportunities for students to engage core faculty throughout the year. It is our hope that a shift to this new model will also assist students in completing their degree program earlier and perhaps save money.

Not only is CTS welcoming a new academic model, but also a new president—Shout out to Dr. Brad Braxton. However, some things have not changed. Covid-19 still looms large. CTS continues to make steps toward a return to normal—whatever that means—after over two years of living under the weight of a global pandemic. Covid-19 vaccines and boosters have begun to transform our lives, even though physical distancing, masks, and handwashing still order our days. We are also acutely aware of the work that remains in order to reach sufficient vaccine coverage that can protect the broader population from the disease.

While Covid-19 vaccines abound in many places, it is not lost on us that the spread of monkeypox does not equal its vaccine availability. This dual public health crisis along with economic, political, religious, and additional social challenges makes our work at CTS even more urgent. Here’s to praying with our feet and protesting with our prayers.

In our ongoing efforts to deliver a stellar educational experience, we continue with our four-fold modality for the 2022-23 Tri-Term Academic Year. Courses will be delivered: face-to-face (in-person at CTS with some Canvas support); online (synchronous and asynchronous sessions employing Canvas and Zoom); hybrid (online with required face-to- face sessions); and flex (online with some optional face- to-face sessions). See the course schedule, Campus Café or the Registrar for specifics.

On-campus coursework and meetings are designed to be low-density, with vaccination and boosters highly recommended for in-person class and all on-campus attendance to protect our students, staff, and faculty. Masks are required for in-person courses and on-campus events. If you are coming to campus, you will need to use your keycard for access; please do not hold the door open for anyone else, even if you recognize them. Refer to the most recent CTS Covid-19 policy for details. Our Covid-19 Response Team and Leadership Team will continue to monitor the recommendations of local, state, and federal government officials—prepared to revise policies to advance public safety as necessary.

Covid-19 has left no one unscathed. Many are also being impacted by monkeypox. We have lost so much. Yet, we are still here. We hear you. We see you. Take care of yourself. May we show compassion and take care of each other.

What is a tri-term academic calendar?
To assist students with matriculation and completion and to give additional time with faculty in core courses, CTS will offer more courses throughout the academic year in a tri-term model. The calendar consists of three terms (14 weeks + 1 Reading Week/Flex Week) one in the fall, winter/spring, and summer. In between the terms are a two-week January Intensive and two-week May Intensive. Courses will continue to be offered in any of the four modalities.

When do I register for Fall 2022 classes?
Registration is open now for Fall 2022; please register as soon as you are able so we may plan appropriately. Registration remains open until the first day of classes on September 6, but we ask that you do not delay. Refer to the CTS website for the  academic calendar and list of courses.

Students should generally consult with their assigned faculty advisor about course selection, but many faculty are not available during the summer. If you don’t know who your advisor is or have general questions about registration, contact the Registrar, Tina Shelton, at [email protected]Tina can also assist with issues related to Campus Café.

What if I owe a balance? Can I still register for Fall 2022 classes?
Students will need to clear balances from the spring semester in order to register for Fall 2022 courses. You will not be allowed to register if your account shows a balance. Please connect with the CTS Controller, Michele Carr, [email protected]for balance inquiries. CTS welcomes its new Financial Aid Coordinator, Ruy DeMagalhães-Ortegano. Until Ruy’s CTS email address is active, please submit any financial inquiries to [email protected].

Does CTS offer a payment plan?
Yes, CTS offers a payment plan for the fall, spring, and summer terms.  The payment plan allows you to pay your tuition in four monthly installments over the course of the term.  There is a $50 enrollment fee for the payment plan.  More information will be sent via email soon. Please connect with the CTS Controller, Michele Carr, [email protected].

Did I hear there is some financial assistance for food, books, and housing?
Chicago Theological Seminary has signed and returned to the Department of Education the required CARES Act Certification and Agreement documents and will use no less than 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.

Students who would like to apply for Emergency Financial Aids Grants should contact [email protected].

What are the dates for the Bayan courses in-person intensives?
As CTS and Bayan continue to live into our relationship of interreligious engagement, Bayan courses will meet in-person October 9-21, 2022 and February 26-March 10, 2023. If you have questions about specific course please contact the Registrar, Tina Shelton, [email protected], or Bayan Vice President of Academic Affairs, Munir Shaikh, [email protected].

What about PhD exams and courses?
There is no longer a residency waiver for Ph.D. courses. Thus at least 50% of Ph.D. courses need to be based on-campus. Remember that you can inquire if faculty are willing to adapt a Master’s level course for doctoral-level credit. If you have questions, you can contact your advisor or Associate Dean/PhD Center Director, Emily Vogt, at [email protected].

What’s the word on field education and CPE?
Please welcome Rev. Dr. Dawnn Pirani Brumfield as the new Director of Theological Field Education. She can be reached at [email protected]. Please make contact to assist with your questions about theological field education and clinical pastoral education. She can also respond to your questions regarding the LM 400: Leadership and Ministry course.

What if I need disabilities accommodations for courses?
The forms to  request accommodations are located on the CTS website, each Canvas course shell, and included in the Student Handbook. Inform your class professor and the Registrar about specific needs. Although she has tendered her resignation, Asst. Director of Student Formation and Community Engagement, Amy Aschliman, has agreed to continue on part-time. You may also contact her at [email protected] regarding accommodations.

How can I access the Writing Center and the Learning Commons?
Please welcome Dr. John Dechant, the part time CTS Writing Center Coordinator. You can reach him at [email protected]. Please connect with him to get assist with writing assignments for your masters or doctoral courses.  He is available via appointment at .

The Learning Commons will be open Monday to Friday from 9:00am – 5:00pm. Evening hours are available virtually on Tuesday and Wednesday nights by appointment via Calendly. Yasmine Abou-El-Kheir serves as the Director of the Learning Commons. She can be reached at [email protected]. Additional information on the Learning Commons can be found in the Student Handbook and on the Learning Commons website.

What if I need assistance with Canvas?
The Director of Online Learning, Alex Jean-Charles, can assist with Canvas issues. His email address is [email protected].

What should I do about email?
Issues with email accounts should be forwarded to [email protected]. Darnell Payne is our IT Director. He can be reached at [email protected]. Darnell can also assist with email troubleshooting and other related inquiries.

What about campus events?
Beginning in the fall there may be some low-density, small on-campus events that meet local, state, and federal public safety guidelines. Larger events such as the Annual C. Shelby Rooks Lecture will take place online. We are hopeful about the spring and summer terms, making plans for a few events to be held in-person. Refer to the most recent CTS Covid-19 policy for guidance when on campus.

What if I am graduating this year?
Prospective 2023 graduates should connect with their advisors and Tina Shelton in the Registrar’s Office,  [email protected] Please note CTS Commencement is early this year due to the tri-term academic calendar. It scheduled for Friday, April 28, 2023 at 2p.m.CT with the location TBD. Plans are for an in-person celebration with livestreaming. Additional information is forthcoming.

What if I have a concern or complaint?
You may complete the anonymous complaint form found on the website. Faculty advisors as well as the Student Government Association are also student advocates. Additionally, there is an academic grievance process outlined in the Student Handbook.

What if I need to talk to someone about academic concerns?
If you have questions about your current courses, please go directly to the professor first. You can reach out to your advisor or to the Academic Dean, Stephanie Buckhanon Crowder, [email protected].

What if I have pastoral or spiritual concerns?
If you have pastoral or spiritual concerns, connect with Asst. Director of Spiritual Formation and Community Engagement, Amy Aschliman, [email protected]. Although she has tendered her resignation, she has agreed to continue on part-time. CTS also has a team of pastoral caregivers, peer mentors, and other sojourners who are here to support you.

May grace, mercy, peace, and patience guide and guard us!