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SBC DIGEST: MBTS celebrates record enrollment, SWBTS prepares for important trustee meeting

Midwestern Seminary and Spurgeon College Celebrate Tenth Consecutive Year of Record Enrollment


KANSAS CITY (BP) — Midwestern Seminary and Spurgeon College announced another record enrollment for the 2021-2022 academic year, with a combined enrollment up nearly 5% from the previous academic year.

President Jason Allen commented on the recent announcement, “I am incredibly thankful for another record enrollment. In the current state of higher education, and especially theological education, an increased enrollment is rare, and it signifies once more how much we have to be thankful to God for.”

“Moreover, we are thankful that our Fall 2022 enrollment is up approximately 5% over Fall 2021, so were off to a strong start to this academic year as well,” Allen added.

Allen went on to say, “We prioritize a strong enrollment because of the ongoing ministry needs of the churches we serve, and the ongoing needs of the nations, far beyond Kansas City. We’re committed to training a new generation of pastors, ministers, and missionaries. The task is great, and we’re praying God will find us faithful in this task.”

Midwestern Seminary has experienced over a decade of consecutive enrollment growth, with 4,917 total students attending in the 2021-2022 academic year. That is up from 4,700 total students in the 2020-2021 academic year and 1,182 students in 2010-2011 academic year, prior to Allen’s arrival at Midwestern Seminary.

While many institutional priorities could account for the consistent growth at the seminary, Midwestern Seminary Senior Vice President for Institutional Relations Charles Smith states that one factor far surpasses them all.

“As Dr. Allen has said, I believe our mission is the biggest driver for our enrollment growth. Yes, we invest a great deal of resources in promoting our institution and recruiting students, but it’s abundantly clear that the biggest driver is Midwestern Seminary’s for the Church mission and Spurgeon College’s for the Kingdom mission.”

Read more here.

SWBTS trustees to receive crucial update next week


FORTH WORTH (BP) – Plans are underway for an important meeting of the trustees of the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary next week. The school is still working through the sudden resignation of Adam Greenway as president on Sept. 23.

In a statement to Baptist Press, interim President David S. Dockery wrote, “Southwestern is not in a crisis, but we face financial challenges that could quickly escalate into a crisis if we do not aggressively move to address them.”

Dockery said the trustees will receive “an update on the state of the seminary and plans for the future.”

Baptist Press reached out to seminary leaders concerning staff and financial details following Greenway’s departure.

Calling it prudent to share the information with the trustees first, he said it will then be shared “as appropriate” with “faculty and some members of the administrative staff.”

The appointment of GuideStone Financial Services President Emeritus O.S. Hawkins as senior advisor and ambassador-at-large for the seminary was announced on Sept. 27.

Hawkins tweeted on Oct. 12, about the upcoming trustees meeting, “Under Chairman Danny Roberts I predict Southwestern trustees are about to become the most informed, engaged and transparent in our entire 124 year history.” He later tweeted a correction stating that the seminary had a 114-year history.

Greenway was elected to lead the seminary by trustees on February 27, 2019. Longtime president Paige Patterson was terminated by the trustees on May 30, 2018, due to the mishandling of sexual abuse allegations made by a student.

Dockery asked Southern Baptists to support the seminary during this time of transition, “We would ask for Southern Baptists around the country to join us in offering faithful prayers for Southwestern as well as by sharing financial gifts with the seminary to ensure that the biblically faithful and Gospel-centered mission of our seminary will be advanced not only in the short term, but also in the years to come for the glory of God.”

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