Most Perkins students take the required internship course during their final year of study for the Master of Divinity or Master of Arts in Ministry degree. Perkins Master of Divinity candidates may choose to do either a full-time or a part-time internship. The two models earn the same number of academic credits*. All Master of Arts in Ministry internships are part-time and earn six credits, three per semester. All internships are nine months long (over the fall and spring terms of one academic year). All Perkins interns receive a stipend.
All prospective interns should be aware that there is more to the internship than the very important hours they will spend doing ministry in the internship placement. The Perkins internship is a course with requirements such as the Internship Seminar, in-depth reflection papers, assignments to fulfill particular competencies, regular supervisory sessions with the Mentor Pastor, and feedback and evaluation conferences. Master of Divinity students should consider their remaining classroom courses, necessary employment, and life situation when deciding between full-time and part-time internship.
The full-time Master of Divinity internship is the original model pioneered by Perkins in 1972 and the model chosen by most Perkins students today. The full-time intern does ministry a minimum of 35 hours a week (inclusive of the Internship Seminar), gaining wide-ranging hands-on experience under supervision while systematically reflecting theologically on that experience. The Intern Faculty members work with students to find and develop internship placements. Students are encouraged to explore placement possibilities with funding and bring these suggestions to the placement conversation with their assigned Intern Faculty supervisor. While full-time interns are not prohibited from taking additional Perkins courses beyond the internship course or from holding employment outside the internship placement, they should be aware that full-time internship is quite demanding, and most full-time interns choose to do only the internship course. The Intern Faculty will consult individually with students to help them make the choice between full-time and part-time internship in order to balance life and learn successfully on internship.
The part-time Master of Divinity internship is designed for students who wish to combine internship with additional course work or other employment. Part-time M.Div. interns work a minimum of 25 hours a week (inclusive of the Internship Seminar) in the internship. The student may already be employed in the placement before internship. The Intern Faculty must approve the internship site and supervision.
The part-time Master of Arts in Ministry internship provides students the opportunity to work under supervision in the specialized area of their degree track. The Intern Faculty works with students to find a suitable ministry agency or church staff where they work a minimum of 20 hours a week (inclusive of the Internship Seminar) while continuing to take classes at Perkins.
Students whose professional goal is chaplaincy may choose to fulfill the internship requirement by taking a full-time yearlong residency in Clinical Pastoral Education at an ACPE-accredited site.