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How and when should you begin the application process?

How do you begin the application process?

You are now ready to pursue Seminary, so what happens next? The most important thing to do when you are ready to apply is to reach out to the Concordia Seminary Enrollment team, which includes lively individuals who are prepared and eager to assist you through the entire process. Our team is here to help you from beginning to end, from the initial conversations where you are just considering attending the Seminary, all the way  through the admissions process and, finally, to the moment you step foot on campus at our annual Orientation for new students. We are here to guide and serve you.

Admissions officers like myself will connect with you as soon as you are ready to apply. There are a few easy ways to contact us. You can submit an inquiry form through our website, which will notify us to reach out to you. A second way to reach us is by clicking on the “Admissions” menu on our website where you can find our team’s contact information. Whether through a phone call or email, we are glad to be in touch with you to help as you begin your application and work through the ensuing process.

The application process starts with the submission of the application form and initial documents, which include your general information. You will then work on fulfilling additional requirements such as providing your official transcripts, retrieving necessary letters of recommendation, completing your LCMS district interview and preparing to pass the Entry Level Competency Exams (ELCEs) requirements. It is essential to remain in communication with your admissions officer to ensure that everything is in place and on track for successful completion of your full application.

When do you begin the application process?

Considering pastoral or diaconal ministry and making the decision to enter Seminary is a big deal. After you have collected the right information and have spoken with your family, friends, pastor, mentors and, we hope, someone from Enrollment, you have now come to the decision to pursue a Seminary education.

When you have reached this point of readiness to apply, the next thing to consider is how much time do you have to complete an application? Our application cycle is consistently set each year based on our enrollment dates. Our residential pastoral and diaconal formation programs begin each fall semester, and the application deadlines are built around this annual timeline.

For those looking to finish an application early to take advantage of potential scholarships and the waiver of application fees, you can complete your application by Oct. 31 of the year before your enrollment. This gives you several months in advance to make sure everything comes together before it is time to make arrangements to move to campus during the summer before classes begin.

The primary deadlines we focus on are Feb. 28 and April 30 of the year of intended enrollment. Feb. 28 is when we would like to see completed applications, and April 30 is when the ELCEs must be completed and successfully passed. These deadlines are set to ensure that prospective students have a sufficient amount of time to prepare and to make the necessary arrangements before coming to Seminary.

We know that our students come from various backgrounds and situations, each carrying their own unique challenges and priorities. Although the discernment and admissions process is certainly done in God’s timing and not our own, whenever possible, we always recommend working a few months ahead to help enable a smoother transition as you finalize your plans toward entering Seminary.

Sarah Seying is an admissions officer at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis