students at orientation


Orientation Fall 2017

Dear Incoming Perkins Student,

Welcome to the Perkins community! You are eagerly expected at the Fall 2017 New Student Orientation. As Director of Recruitment & Admissions, I am very excited that you will be joining our community.

Fall Orientation is Thursday, August 17, 2017 7:45 a.m. at Perkins School of Theology. Attendance to all parts of New Student Orientation is required of all first-year students. You will meet your student colleagues, peer advisor, faculty members, and administrative staff. Please plan to park in the Meadows Museum underground parking garage (#70 on your campus map). You will need to enter the left driveway of the garage. Once you arrive on campus, proceed to Prothro Hall (#29 on your campus map) to check-in at the lobby, have your picture made in Prothro 106, and then proceed to the Refectory to enjoy a continental breakfast. As we will have a busy day, please dress comfortably.

Prior to orientation on Thursday August 17, Bridwell Library will be offering a seminar on theological research. On Wednesday, August 16 at 6pm, the seminar “Introducing Bridwell Library,” will familiarize you to the essential tools you will need to complete your assignments, answer your questions, and fill you in on ways—some unexpected--that Bridwell Library and its staff can improve your life at Perkins, including writing support. This will be the only session of the seminar to complement New Student Orientation. We recommend that you attend this session in order to get your graduate theological education off to a very good start.

To help you plan, we included links to all necessary documents for your careful review:
Orientation Schedule
• Registration Guidelines from the Perkins Registrar
Degree Progress Sheet
Course Planning Guide
Schedule of Courses for the Fall Term
• Intent to Enroll Form (For those who have not submitted one)
• Memo from Division 1 on Biblical Languages
SMU Bookstore (Barnes and Noble) Textbook Information
Book List Fall 2017
SMU Graduate & Professional Loan Information
Monthly Payment Plan Options
Spiritual Formation Retreat Information
Reading Assignments for Orientation for Theological Discussion "Engaging the Word: The New Testament and the Christian Believer"
Mandatory Insurance Information from the Health Center

• Health History and Immunization
SMU Student Health Form
Meningitis and Other Vaccination information

• SMU ID, Parking, and Transportation information

SMU ID Photo
Campus Parking Permit Instructions
Campus Parking Permit Ordering
DART Pass Ordering
Parking Alternatives and Other Services

Registration for Classes

Registration Guidelines from the Perkins Registrar are found in the links too; course selection and registration happen online at

Using the above links for your appropriate degree program Course Planning Guide and Perkins Schedule of Classes, as well as following the directions from the Perkins registrar, you will be able to see which courses you should take based on your degree plan. If you are considering taking a biblical language, please read the “Memo from Division I.” Non-degree students should remember enrollment is valid for one year, and they must also follow all prerequisites.

Registration for courses opens to incoming students on June 28 for Fall 2017 courses. You can register for courses on-line via using your Login ID (SMU ID number) and password.

Your SMU ID number was emailed from the SMU Division of Enrollment Services after you were admitted. To set your initial account password, visit If you have any difficulty with your account, please call the IT Help Desk at 214-768-4357.

After logging in, you will notice that there is a hold on your account. It is related to the Student Rights and Responsibilities policy. Students must log in to in order to affirm they have read and agree to the University’s policy on Student Rights and Responsibilities. Log in to and select the “Manage Classes” tile. This is a helpful diagram of the process to add/drop/swap a class in my.SMU. Then select “Rights and Responsibilities Hold” on the upper right hand side of the page. Click on “Rights and Responsibilities.” Read the instructions and at the end of the instructions, click on “Student Rights and Responsibilities.” Review and agree to each of the three sections: Financial Rights and Responsibilities, the Honor Code & Student Code of Conduct, and Appeals & Complaints. Check “I Agree” for the entire page, and then click “Confirm.”

Additionally, if you find that you do not have registration privileges, it may be because you have not returned your Intent to Enroll form. An Intent to Enroll form is included as a link. Please fill it out and fax it to us at 214-768-4245 or email it to me at as soon as possible. Your health history and immunization forms must also be sent to the Health Center prior to enrollment.
Please note that we have clearly marked the courses available to first-year students in Dallas and Houston-Galveston. If you are a transfer student from another theological graduate school, please contact Joe Monroy, Perkins Registrar, prior to registration to determine your eligibility to enroll in other courses at ( or 214-768-2152.

For MSM students, please contact Dr. Chris Anderson, Associate Professor of Sacred Music, to learn which classes you may take. He may be contacted at For ThM students, please contact Dr. Evelyn Parker, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs to coordinate your plan of study. She may be contacted at

Community Life

Please plan to bring cash or a check with you. During orientation, students enrolled in Dallas will be asked to pay a $30/per year community-life fee. All new students will have the opportunity to purchase Perkins T-shirts, pajama bottoms, and blankets (It may be a good idea to bring your checkbook to orientation.)

In order to get an SMU Student ID card, after registering for your classes, you should go to and log in using your SMU student ID number and the password you created when you activated your SMU email account. Upload a color photo that conforms to the rules set out on the upload page. If you upload a photo that meets the requirements, you will be able to pick up your ID card without standing in line at orientation. On the morning of new student orientation, you should be prepared to take an SMU Perkins Lookbook photo as well.

Although a free parking pass will be provided soon for the day of New Student Orientation, parking rates for the 2017-2018 year are $165 per semester or $310 per year. Permits may be ordered on our website once you are registered for classes. Using your SMU ID and password, log on, select order permit, and follow the steps. You will need your vehicle plate number, make, and model. All charges are posted to on student accounts.

Also, please be aware that once you have been assigned an SMU e-mail address, SMU e-mail is the only way that we will get in touch with you for announcements from our office, including the weekly Perkins newsletter. Be sure to check your SMU e-mail account regularly.

Notes for Houston-Galveston Extension Program Students

Students are responsible for providing transportation to Dallas. For students interested in carpooling, please contact the admissions office, and we will help you arrange these details with other students
Perkins will provide shared accommodations for August 16 at a Dallas hotel close to campus. To reserve for a hotel room, please email me no later than July 21.

Tuition and SMU Housing

Tuition and fees for fall and spring terms are $961 per credit hour in Dallas and $837 per credit hour for extension courses. Questions about federal student loans can be directed to Meredith Turner at Please review the Division of Enrollment Services payment plan options at the SMU Bursar’s office link.

If you are making arrangements for on-campus housing, SMU residence halls and commuter rooms will be officially open for graduate student move-in on Wednesday, August 16 at 9:00 a.m. You will need to check in at the Virginia-Snider Commons (#13 on your campus map) front desk to get your keys. Please bring a picture ID with you when you check-in.

Other Important Dates

You will need to mark your calendars with a few important dates.

All M.Div., M.A.M., and M.S.M. students are required to attend one of the Spiritual Formation Retreats on Friday, September 8, 2017 for Dallas students or Saturday, August 19, 2017 for Houston-Galveston students. More details, including location, are available here.

Fall classes begin Monday, August 21 and Thursday, August 24 in Houston (Spiritual Formation in Houston begins Monday, August 21). Your first day of class may vary depending on your individual schedule.

Please read all of your orientation materials carefully and thoroughly. Let us know if you have any questions or concerns. If you have relocated, we ask that you forward your new address and phone number to the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid at your earliest convenience. I look forward to having you in the Perkins community. See you at orientation on Thursday, August 17!


Herbert S. Coleman, II
Director, Recruitment & Admissions

P.S. Again, included here are a few books that might be helpful as you prepare for your first year of seminary:

How to Think Theologically by Howard W. Stone and James O. Duke
How to Read a Book by Mortimer Jerome Adler
On Writing Well by William Zinsser
Seminary Student Writes by Deborah Core
Westminster Dictionary of Theological Terms by Donald K. McKim.