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Are you ready to start an application? Terrific!

We’re excited to begin conversations with you about your calling.

We would love to hear from you and answer any questions you have. Please email or call us!

Director of Admissions, Richmond: Erin Burt or call/text 804-291-8314

Director of Admissions, Charlotte: Lisa McLennan or call/text 980-475-1066

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Become the leader God calls you to be!

  • Scripturally and historically informed
  • Theologically grounded
  • Spiritually nourished
  • Justice Oriented
  • Mission focused
  • Transformation Driven
  • Passionate about renewing the church
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  • M.Div., M.A.C.E., M.A.P.T., & Dual Degree Applicants

    • Application steps:
      Applications are not reviewed by our Faculty Admissions Committee until all of the following steps are completed. Steps can be completed in any order.

      1. Be in conversation with the Admissions Director on the campus you are interested in: Contact Erin Burt (Richmond applicants) or Lisa McLennan.

      2. Complete an application in SONIS. We recommend that applicants complete an online application. Should you need access to a PDF application, please contact Bonnie Hoffman.

      To start your online application, please use these instructions.

      3. Send application fee
      Before February 15 – no fee
      After February 15 – $50 fee

      4. Request three references. Once you have completed the online application, your references will receive an email asking them to fill out an online evaluation form. We highly recommend that references be (a) an Academic or Supervisor (b) your Pastor or (c) a Personal. We do not accept family or current student references. Should you need to send your reference a PDF, please contact Bonnie Hoffman.

      5. Request all transcripts. Official (signed and sealed) transcripts from ALL previously attended academic institutions are required. Institutions can email eScripts to admissions@upsem.edu or mail paper transcripts to Union Presbyterian Seminary, Office of Admissions, 3401 Brook Road, Richmond VA 23227. Do not send transcripts to the Charlotte campus.

      6. Complete a background check. A background check is required of all applicants who are US Citizens, Resident Aliens, and International Applicants who have lived in the US for more than two years. To order your background check, go to the CastleBranch website, enter “ua37” into the Package Code field and click go. Review and agree to the Terms and Conditions of Use, then click continue to proceed to payment and confirmation.

      7. Return your personal disclosure statement. Download a Personal Disclosure Statement and email to admissions@upsem.edu.

      8. Interview with a faculty member. Richmond applicants email Admissions Assistant Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221 to arrange your interview. Charlotte applicants email Lisa McLennan or call 980-475-1066, to arrange your interview. If necessary, interviews can be conducted via Zoom or phone.


      Other details:

      Materials can be mailed to:
      Union Presbyterian Seminary, Attn: Admissions
      3401 Brook Road, Richmond, VA 23227

      Materials may also be emailed to admissions@upsem.edu.

      For questions about the application process, email Admissions Assistant Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221.

      Director of Admissions-Richmond
      Erin Burt
      804-291-8314 cell

      Director of Admissions-Charlotte
      Rev. Lisa McLennan
      980-475-1066 cell

  • Master of Theology Applicants

    • Application steps:
      Applications are not reviewed by our Faculty Admissions Committee until all of the following steps are completed. Steps can be completed in any order.

      1. Complete an application in SONIS. We recommend that applicants complete an online application. Should you need access to a PDF application, please contact Bonnie Hoffman. To start your online application, please use these instructions.

       

      2. Send application fee*
      Before February 15 – no fee
      After February 15 – $50 fee

      3. Contact and inform three references. If you have completed the online application, your references will receive an email asking them to fill out an online evaluation form. You can also download a paper evaluation.

      4. Request all transcripts. Official (signed and sealed) transcripts from ALL previously attended academic institutions are required. Institutions can email eScripts to admissions@upsem.edu.

      5. Complete a background check. A background check is required of all applicants who are US Citizens, Resident Aliens, and International Applicants who have lived in the US for more than two years. To order your background check, go to the CastleBranch website, enter “ua37” into the Package Code field and click go. Review and agree to the Terms and Conditions of Use, then click continue to proceed to payment and confirmation.

      6. Return your personal disclosure statement. Download a Personal Disclosure Statement and email to admissions@upsem.edu.

      7. Interview with a faculty member. An interview with both the Th.M. Program Director and a (the) member of faculty with whom you wish to study are required. Email Admissions Assistant Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221 to make arrangements.


      Materials can be mailed to:
      Union Presbyterian Seminary, Attn: Admissions
      3401 Brook Road, Richmond, VA 23227

      Materials may also be emailed to admissions@upsem.edu.

      For questions about the application process, email Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221.

  • Doctor of Ministry Applicants

    • Application steps:
      Applications are not reviewed by our Faculty Admissions Committee until all of the following steps are completed. Steps can be completed in any order.

      1. Complete an application in SONIS. We recommend that applicants complete an online application. We are in the midst of setting up a new application software. Our online application will be available again in September. Should you need access to a PDF application, please contact Bonnie Hoffman.

      To start your online application, please use these instructions.

      2. Request three references.
      Once you have completed the online application, your references will receive an email asking them to fill out an online evaluation. We highly recommend that references be (a) an Academic or Supervisor (b) your Pastor or (c) a Personal. We do not accept family or current student references. Should you need to send your reference a .pdf form, please contact Bonnie Hoffman.

      3. Submit all transcripts. Official (signed and sealed) transcripts from ALL previously attended academic institutions are required. Institutions can email eScripts to admissions@upsem.edu or mail paper transcripts to Union Presbyterian Seminary, Office of Admissions, 3401 Brook Road, Richmond VA 23227. Do not send transcripts to the Charlotte campus.

      4. Complete a background check. A background check is required of all applicants who are US Citizens, Resident Aliens, and International Applicants who have lived in the US for more than two years. To order your background check, go to the CastleBranch website, enter “ua37” into the Package Code field and click go. Review and agree to the Terms and Conditions of Use, then click continue to proceed to payment and confirmation.

      5. Submit your Personal Disclosure Statement. Download the PDF here and return to UPSem Admissions.

      Materials can be mailed to:
      Union Presbyterian Seminary, Attn: Admissions
      3401 Brook Road, Richmond, VA 23227

      Materials may also be emailed to admissions@upsem.edu.

      For questions about the application process, email Admissions Assistant Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221.

  • Certificate in Public Theology

    • We accept a limited number of non-degree seeking, certificate students each year. Certificate students may choose this path for a number of reasons, such as:

      1. Continuing education for those already serving in ministry

      2. Professional or personal growth for those invested in connecting their belief system with their service to their community

      Limited Enrollment Requirements

      Applicants must have graduated from a college or university accredited by one of the nationally-recognized regional accrediting agencies.

      Limited enrollment students will take 12 credits worth of courses over the course of 1 year (3 courses in relation to the work of the Centers and a travel seminar). Exceptions must be approved by the associate dean for academic programs in Richmond.

      Certificate students are not eligible for financial aid.

      Certificate students may subsequently apply to a degree program, and if admitted, request transfer credit for a maximum of four courses through the appropriate dean. A limited enrollment student must have paid all seminary bills before being admitted to a degree program.

      Application Process

      Complete an application in SONIS. We recommend that applicants complete an online application. Should you need access to a PDF Application, please contact Bonnie Hoffman.

      To start your online application, please use these instructions.

      REFERENCES Please provide the names of two references. References should include one professional reference and a second reference who can comment on your academic ability. In considering your request, we may find it helpful to contact other sources of information.

      TRANSCRIPTS Applicants must have original transcripts, showing courses and grades, sent directly from each accredited four-year college or university they have attended. A final transcript showing a bachelor’s degree and the date conferred must be on file before a student may enroll.

      ESSAY In 500-800 words, discuss an important contemporary social issue that you are actively involved in and how you see the need for theological engagement with that issue.

      BACKGROUND CHECK A background check is required of all applicants who are:

      1. U.S. citizens
      2. Resident aliens
      3. International applicants who have lived in the U.S. for the last two years

      The Admissions Office recognizes that personal integrity, emotional health, and spiritual maturity are essential to faithful and effective ministry. Yet we affirm that even serious misdeeds have sometimes been a part of an experience of growth, transformation, and call, by the work of God’s Spirit that leads a person to seminary, and to faithful ministry. We also realize that people come to the attention of criminal justice systems for a variety of reasons-including not only the commission of crimes but also mistaken allegations, acts of civil disobedience, and systemic injustices such as racism. No charge or past offense automatically disqualifies an applicant from admission. All records will be evaluated in context, and prior to an admission decision.

      The background check consists of two parts:

      1. Complete a background check. A background check is required of all applicants who are US Citizens, Resident Aliens, and International Applicants who have lived in the US for more than two years. To order your background check, go to the CastleBranch website, enter “ua37” into the Package Code field and click go. Review and agree to the Terms and Conditions of Use, then click continue to proceed to payment and confirmation.

      2. Return your personal disclosure statement. Download a Personal Disclosure Statement and email to admissions@upsem.edu.

      APPLICATION FEE

      Before February 15 – no fee
      After February 15 – $50 fee

      Checklist Reminders

      1. Even if you are applying using the online application, you may need to print out additional forms, fill them out by hand, and mail them.

      2. If you are mailing the paper form, please include the application fee with your application form.

      Each PDF form will open in a separate browser window.

      To download our PDF forms you will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader Plug In.

      For help or information, email Admissions Assistant Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221.

  • International Applicants

    • The following requirements are in addition to the application requirements for the M.DIV., M.A.C.E., OR TH.M.

      1. English Language Proficiency:  International applicants who do not speak, write, or read English as their first language are required to submit current scores from the four sections of the internet-based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL iBT). Scores from the paper-based test will no longer be accepted. Applicants must achieve a minimum of 20 on each section of the TOEFL iBT in order to be considered for admission. We will now accept IELTS scores in lieu of TOEFL iBT scores. Test information is available from Educational Testing Services at www.ets.org. Those who have completed four years of bachelor’s or higher level of study in an institution in the United States of America may request an exemption from the Director of Admissions.

      Interviews:  Interviews with both a member of the faculty, and a member of admissions, are required. If you are applying for the Th.M. program, an interview with both the Director of Graduate Studies, and a (the) member of the faculty with whom you wish to study, are required. Once we have received your completed application and your TOEFL scores, we will help you to schedule them. You may interview by video call. Please email Admissions Assistant, Bonnie Hoffman, or call 804-278-4221 to arrange your interview.

      Financial requirements:  An international student Certification of Funding form with bank statements showing available funds from each source of assistance and documentation certifying the availability of funds sufficient to cover living expenses during the course of study at Union Presbyterian Seminary. Applicants who are accepted must deposit funds with the seminary by May 1 preceding the fall term.

      The international student advisor in the academic dean’s office will assist admitted students in completing visa forms after money has been deposited.

      Living Expenses (2021 estimated costs):
      $28,423 single student 11-month budget for tuition, books, and living expenses if living on campus. International health insurance rates vary so this figure is an estimate only.
      $34,660 married students with no children 11-month budget for tuition, books, and living expenses if living on campus. International health insurance rates vary so this figure is an estimate only.

      Financial Aid
      Students who are admitted and qualify for need-based financial aid may receive funds for up to 100% of tuition. Particularly well-qualified international students may receive aid in the form of merit scholarships. However, international students who accept merit-based scholarships are not eligible for institutional need-based aid. Financial aid will not cover travel or living expenses.

      Submit all required forms and deposit all required funds by May 1 for each year of study.

      All international students and their family members living in the U.S. are required to have health insurance through a company approved by Union Presbyterian Seminary. International health insurance rates vary. More information can be found at International Student Insurance.


      Checklist Reminders

      For questions about the application process, email Admissions Assistant Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221.

      UPSem recommends international students not bring family members with them for the first year of study.

      International applications are accepted for Richmond campus only.

      International students cannot apply as a Limited Enrollment applicant.

      Click here for more information on tuition, housing and living expenses.

  • Transfer Applicants

    • Transfer Credit Policies

      A limited number of transfer credits for M.A.C.E. and M.Div. students may be accepted for work completed within the past eight years at institutions accredited by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, or at institutions offering graduate-level work accredited by one of the nationally recognized regional accrediting agencies in the United States.

      Union Presbyterian Seminary reserves the right to deny transfer credit for courses taken at institutions that do not meet its accreditation standards. Transfer students are encouraged to contact the Registrar’s Office for further details.

      In assessing the transferability of credit hours earned at other institutions, the Registrar’s Office, in consultation with the academic dean, will only examine official transcripts. As needed, the Registrar’s Office will consult faculty members in departments related to the areas in which courses have earned these credit hours.

      If approval is given to the transfer of credit hours, the Registrar’s Office will notify the student (or applicant, if a person requests this information in considering whether to apply for admission to our seminary).

      At the student’s request, and with written information, the Registrar’s Office will release this information to other entities such as denominational credentialing bodies and Veterans Affairs. The Registrar’s Office will maintain these records as part of the seminary’s institutional records.

      Students who receive transfer credit for all required courses in any competency area are ordinarily required to take at least one elective course in that area (biblical studies, theology, ethics, history, education and practical theology). Transfer students must earn at least half of the credits required for their degree at UPSem, including at least six credit hours in supervised ministry for M.Div. students.

      Students transferring into the M.Div./M.A.C.E. dual degree program must spend a minimum of three years enrolled in the program in order to receive both degrees.

      Credits to be earned through study at another school (other than an RTC school), after a student has enrolled at UPSem, require prior approval before they are begun. Richmond students are to contact the Richmond academic dean. Charlotte students are to contact the Charlotte academic dean.

      Union Presbyterian Seminary considers for transfer credit only those distance-learning courses for which it can be established, in the judgment of the appropriate academic dean in consultation with the appropriate departments, that peer and student-faculty interaction met or exceeded standards maintained in UPSem courses. Credits that have already been applied toward an earned degree cannot ordinarily be transferred.


      Transfer Credits Procedure

      By the end of their first term following matriculation at Union Presbyterian Seminary, transfer students must by written notice to the registrar initiate requests to transfer course credits earned prior to attending Union Presbyterian Seminary.

      The student is responsible to provide the registrar with documentation of the content of each course proposed for transfer.

      The registrar will assemble a packet of proposed transfer materials for the student and submit it to those determining acceptance of the credits.


      Checklist Reminders

      Even if you are applying using the online application, you may need to print out additional forms, fill them out by hand, and mail them.

      If you are mailing the paper application form, don’t forget to include the application fee with your application form. The paper version of the application will be available September 15th.

      To download our PDF forms you will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader Plug-In.

      For help or information, email Admissions Assistant Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221.

  • Limited Enrollment Applicants

    • Non-Degree Limited Enrollment

      We accept a limited number of non-degree-seeking, Limited Enrollment (LE) students each year. Limited Enrollment students may choose this path as:

      1. Continuing education for a pastor or Christian educator

      2. Personal growth through a limited number of seminary courses

      3. Students from other seminaries seeking a course offered through Union such as Presbyterian polity

      4. An opportunity to experience Union Presbyterian Seminary while discerning their own call to ministry

      Limited Enrollment Requirements

      Applicants must have graduated from a college or university accredited by one of the nationally recognized regional accrediting agencies.

      Limited enrollment students may take a maximum of four courses across any platform. Exceptions must be approved by the associate dean for academic programs in Richmond or the academic dean in Charlotte.

      Limited enrollment students are not eligible for financial aid.

      Limited enrollment students may subsequently apply to a degree program, and if admitted, request transfer credit for a maximum of four courses through the appropriate dean. A limited enrollment student must have paid all seminary bills before being admitted to a degree program.

      Application Process

      Complete the Application for Admission.  The form can be mailed, faxed, or scanned and emailed to the Admissions Office after printing. This online application will be available September 15th.

      REFERENCES Please provide the names of two persons such as a pastor or church educator and/or a professor, or someone who can comment on your academic ability. In considering your request, we may find it helpful to contact other sources of information.

      TRANSCRIPTS Applicants must have an original transcript, showing courses and grades, sent directly from each accredited four-year college or university they have attended. A final transcript showing a bachelor’s degree and the date conferred must be on file before a student may enroll.

      ESSAY Limited Enrollment applicants must submit an essay of less than 800 words that speaks about their educational and ecclesiastical background, the courses they wish to take, and their reasons for taking them.

      BACKGROUND CHECK A background check is required of all applicants who are:

      1. U.S. citizens
      2. Resident aliens
      3. International applicants who have lived in the U.S. for the last two years

      The Admissions Office recognizes that personal integrity, emotional health, and spiritual maturity are essential to faithful and effective ministry. Yet we affirm that even serious misdeeds have sometimes been a part of an experience of growth, transformation, and call, by the work of God’s Spirit that leads a person to seminary, and to faithful ministry. We also realize that people come to the attention of criminal justice systems for a variety of reasons including not only the commission of crimes but also mistaken allegations, acts of civil disobedience, and systemic injustices such as racism. No charge or past offense automatically disqualifies an applicant from admission. All records will be evaluated in context, and prior to an admission decision.

      The background check consists of two parts:

      1. Complete a background check. A background check is required of all applicants who are US Citizens, Resident Aliens, and International Applicants who have lived in the US for more than two years. To order your background check, go to the CastleBranch website, enter “ua37” into the Package Code field and click go. Review and agree to the Terms and Conditions of Use, then click continue to proceed to payment and confirmation.

      2. Return your personal disclosure statement. Download a Personal Disclosure Statement and email to admissions@upsem.edu.

      APPLICATION FEE An application fee of $30.00 must be included when mailing the application.
      SUBMIT Mail or email application and all supporting documents to Union Presbyterian Seminary, Office of Admissions, 3401 Brook Road, Richmond, VA 23227.

      Checklist Reminders

      1. Even if you are applying using the online application, you may need to print out additional forms, fill them out by hand, and mail them.

      2. If you are mailing the paper form, please include the application fee with your application form.

      Each PDF form will open in a separate browser window.

      To download our PDF forms you will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader Plug In.

      For help or information, email Admissions Assistant Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221.

  • Auditor Applicants

    • Audit Policies

      Auditing provides an opportunity to receive instruction in a particular course without receiving a grade or course credit. Auditors are expected to attend class sessions and may listen in class; the instructor is not required to review any written work auditors may choose to do. Audit is by permission of instructor, and the instructor shall also set all terms of the audit.

      Graduates of Union Presbyterian Seminary and other RTC institutions, degree-seeking students, spouses of current Union students, and staff members employed by Union and RTC schools, as well as their spouses, may audit one course per term at no charge, as long as the course is otherwise available to auditors and as long as procedures for signing up for audit have been followed. To audit additional courses in one term, and for all other auditors, there is a non-refundable fee of $200.

      Application Process

      1. Obtain permission of the course instructor.

      2. Complete the Audit Application.

      3. Submit application and $200 fee (or fee waiver request) via email or mail to Union Presbyterian Seminary, Office of Admissions, 3401 Brook Road, Richmond, VA 23227.

      To download our PDF forms you will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader Plug In.

      For help or information, email Admissions Assistant Bonnie Hoffman or call 804-278-4221.



This link will take you to a report containing important information about campus security. A paper copy of this report is available from the seminary business office upon request.   Student Right to Know Report

Union Presbyterian Seminary does not discriminate among applicants to, or participants in, its degree programs on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, national origin, or physical disability.