In the fall of 2017, we began reorganizing and establishing the Office of Enrollment Management (OEM). Responsible for recruitment, admission and financial aid services, the OEM was restructured by recommendations from the Perkins Engagement Team.
In the second phase of the reorganization, we decided to assign a new title to the recruiters: Ministry Discernment Associate (MDA), a distinctive title that would more accurately describe their role. In the selection process of two new recruiters, it was emphasized that a major purpose of their job was to regularly and meaningfully engage with prospective students about their call to ministry; learn about their ministry experiences; seek to understand their gifts and talents; and, as much as possible, learn about their end goals. The MDA’s were expected to take a genuine interest in the prospective students with whom they interacted so that they might not only attract students to Perkins but also relate to each one in a manner that left the prospect with a sense of authentic interest on the part of the MDA after each encounter.
John Lowery and Caleb Palmer were invited to the join the team in the summer of 2018 and have served in the Ministry Discernment role exceptionally well. In their first year as MDA’s, I am thrilled to report outstanding feedback from several sources. In the interest of space, I share an account of just one experience:
“While I was in the process of discerning which school was right for me, I had narrowed it down to three options, one of which was Perkins School of Theology. During the time I visited with people from each school…I received the most welcoming experience from Perkins. The deciding factor came from my experience … with my Ministry Discernment Associate. No other school had a person who remained in direct contact with me to walk alongside me on my journey to choosing the right seminary…they stayed in contact with me throughout the process…It was that personal touch which led me to Perkins! Thank you to everyone who has helped me on this journey and especially…to…my Ministry Discernment Associate who took the time to walk alongside me during this time!”
– (2019 fall entering Master of Divinity student)
Our MDA’s have hit the ground running this fall and will have visited more than 30 locations by the end of October. If you have individuals who wish to receive information, a call, visit Perkins or apply, please direct them to the following link and someone from our staff will respond: https://www.smu.edu/Perkins/Admission
The next Inside Perkins, scheduled for Tuesday, November 12, will coincide with Fall Convocation and offers these exceptional opportunities: lunch with guest speakers Celestin Musekura and Samira Izad Page and attendance at the Rick Steves’ seminar: “The Holy Land: The Importance of Dual Narrative Travels in Israel and Palestine.” Attendees are also scheduled to worship, observe a class, meet the Dean and experience a walking tour of the beautiful sights on the SMU campus. Please direct interested persons to this link for registration to Inside Perkins.
We appreciate your continued support and prayers.
The Rev. Margot Perez-Greene, Ph.D.
Associate Dean of Enrollment Management