Truett Seminary Granted Associate Membership in Association of Theological Schools

June 26, 1998

Baylor University's George W. Truett Theological Seminary has been elected unanimously as an associate member of the Association of Theological Schools.

The official vote came during the association's biennial meeting June 13-15 in Baltimore, Md.

"We are very pleased that Truett Seminary has reached this important milestone in its development," said Baylor President Robert B. Sloan Jr., who served as the seminary's first dean. "I believe that the ATS accreditation, coupled with our excellent faculty and curriculum, our commitment to spiritual formation and mentoring, and our plans for a new building, will advance our objective of preparing Baptist ministers who will faithfully preach the gospel in Texas and beyond."

The commission based its recommendation on the seminary's applications, reports from ATS staff members who visited the campus and letters of support from other ATS members. The staff report commended Baylor's commitment to the success of the seminary and noted the importance the university administration places upon the seminary as a meaningful part of the university mission. The report also recognized the diversity, outstanding credentials and research record of the Truett faculty and remarked that the library resources available at Baylor were "among the largest collections available to any recent applicant school." The ATS staff also reported that Truett has a total enrollment that currently exceeds many ATS-member schools.

"This is a goal toward which Truett Seminary has been working since the first day of classes in 1994," said J. Bradley Creed, dean of the seminary. "I would like to commend our faculty, staff and the Baylor administration for the hard work and diligent support given during this process. We are proud and honored to be members of the Association of Theological Schools."

Truett Seminary is already accredited through Baylor by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. This additional accreditation by ATS will provide a process to enable the seminary to develop its programs and participate in ATS-sponsored grants. As an associate member, Truett faculty and staff will be able to attend ATS meetings and vote on any issues before its members.

Dr. Michael D. Morgan, assistant dean of Truett Seminary, says the associate membership in ATS is the first step in a three- to four-year process to obtain full membership. The next step for Truett will be to seek permission from ATS to form a committee of faculty members who will begin an intensive self-study on the seminary's mission and purpose.

Last November's announcement of a $5 million challenge gift from John and Eula Mae Baugh of Houston has allowed the seminary to accelerate its plans for a new facility on the Baylor campus. The university is in the final stages of preparation for a public campaign to secure the matching funds needed to begin construction of a permanent home for the seminary. The seminary currently uses the facilities in the B.H. Carroll Education Building of the First Baptist Church of Waco.

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