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Author Topic: Why 2 OCA seminaries in the lower 48?  (Read 3850 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: April 09, 2009, 12:39:00 AM »

Question for all the OCA people out there,

Why does the OCA have two seminaries - St. Tikhon's and St. Vladimir's -  that are located relatively close to each other? (PA and NY, respectively).

Do these two seminaries have a different focus or mission?  Do they have different theological outlooks? Do they serve a different student demographic?

Why do prospective priests choose one seminary over the other?
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« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2009, 12:49:57 AM »

One is like a graduate school Vladimir's (must have bachelors first) and one can be more like a vocational school- you can go straight out of highschool or you can go like graduate school.

(I could be wrong, but this is what I gathered from looking at the paperwork in the narthex at my parish)
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« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2009, 01:01:41 AM »

Question for all the OCA people out there,

Why does the OCA have two seminaries - St. Tikhon's and St. Vladimir's -  that are located relatively close to each other? (PA and NY, respectively).

Do these two seminaries have a different focus or mission?  Do they have different theological outlooks? Do they serve a different student demographic?

Why do prospective priests choose one seminary over the other?

My experience is that St. Vlad's is more into theologizing and St. Tikhon's is more into pastoring.  That they are two together is the result of history (e.g. St. Mary's in MN had a seminary once, during the 30's and 40's there was no functioning seminary, etc.).
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« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2009, 01:11:33 AM »

My wish is that the Midwest will have a great Orthodox seminary.  Not that I plan to use it, but I still wish that it would.
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« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2009, 01:22:10 AM »

Question for all the OCA people out there,

Why does the OCA have two seminaries - St. Tikhon's and St. Vladimir's -  that are located relatively close to each other? (PA and NY, respectively).

Do these two seminaries have a different focus or mission?  Do they have different theological outlooks? Do they serve a different student demographic?

Why do prospective priests choose one seminary over the other?

My experience is that St. Vlad's is more into theologizing and St. Tikhon's is more into pastoring.  That they are two together is the result of history (e.g. St. Mary's in MN had a seminary once, during the 30's and 40's there was no functioning seminary, etc.).

This is what I was told by the local OCA priest. St. Tikhon's teaches you HOW you cense, St. Vlad's teaches you WHY you cense, etc.
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« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2009, 08:46:44 AM »

I think there's a good chance one will close.
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« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2009, 10:54:30 AM »

What makes you say this, Tiki?
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« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2009, 10:58:03 AM »

What makes you say this, Tiki?

Maybe, with the warning Fr. Ambrose gave us about the Tikidox, Tiki is camped outside one with his barbeque. Shocked
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« Reply #8 on: April 09, 2009, 10:09:35 PM »

I enjoyed visiting both of these seminaries. I have been to St. Tikhon twice, to St. Vlad's once. Nice campuses, a lot of relics of Saints, nice people around.

My understanding of the situation. Historically, Orthodoxy was more developed in Northeast of USA. So educational centers of Orthodoxy (in particular of OCA) appeared there. Later they grew and strengthened, thanks God.

And yes, development of a new seminary in Midwest in addition to all these existing, would be highly beneficial.
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« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2009, 10:25:06 PM »

My wish is that the Midwest will have a great Orthodox seminary.  Not that I plan to use it, but I still wish that it would.
I was thinking this very thing as I began reading the replies.  Smiley
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« Reply #10 on: April 09, 2009, 10:44:42 PM »

I'm confused by the title.
The "lower 48" what? Is there some ranking of seminaries which these two seminaries are in the lower 48?
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« Reply #11 on: April 09, 2009, 10:46:13 PM »

There is a small semimary in Alaska.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contiguous_United_States
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« Reply #12 on: April 09, 2009, 10:50:24 PM »

I'm confused by the title.
The "lower 48" what? Is there some ranking of seminaries which these two seminaries are in the lower 48?

Lower 48 refers to 48 U.S. states from 50. It is Alaskan saying, which describes the vast majority of territory of USA, everything except Alaska and Hawaii.
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« Reply #13 on: April 09, 2009, 10:51:30 PM »

Lower 48 refers to 48 U.S. states from 50. It is Alaskan saying, which describes the vast majority of territory of USA, everything except Alaska and Hawaii.

Thank you!
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« Reply #14 on: April 09, 2009, 10:53:41 PM »

There is a small semimary in Alaska.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contiguous_United_States


That would be St. Herman's in Alaska.
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« Reply #15 on: April 10, 2009, 08:31:33 AM »

What makes you say this, Tiki?

Financially it may be difficult to support two that are less than two hours apart.
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« Reply #16 on: April 10, 2009, 10:13:36 AM »

What makes you say this, Tiki?

Financially it may be difficult to support two that are less than two hours apart.

St Tikhon's is having serious financial troubles at the moment. Whether the seminary closes remains to be seen; St Vlad's is in no danger of closing.


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« Reply #17 on: April 10, 2009, 10:14:18 AM »

Question for all the OCA people out there,

Why does the OCA have two seminaries - St. Tikhon's and St. Vladimir's -  that are located relatively close to each other? (PA and NY, respectively).

Do these two seminaries have a different focus or mission?  Do they have different theological outlooks? Do they serve a different student demographic?

Why do prospective priests choose one seminary over the other?

My experience is that St. Vlad's is more into theologizing and St. Tikhon's is more into pastoring.  That they are two together is the result of history (e.g. St. Mary's in MN had a seminary once, during the 30's and 40's there was no functioning seminary, etc.).

This is what I was told by the local OCA priest. St. Tikhon's teaches you HOW you cense, St. Vlad's teaches you WHY you cense, etc.
And Holy Cross teaches you what the PRICE is of the censor and how to get it on SALE!  

Gota finish the joke if you're gona tell it...lol.  

Also, I think that the reason for the 2 OCA seminaries contains a couple of factors:

*  The main Russian contingent (former OCA was Metropolia of MP) was HEAVILY concentratd in the Eastern seaboard (NY) and Pennsylvania, so in terms of concentration of parishes, people, resources, etc. it makes the most sense.

* Why are there two?  Well you can't ever have "enough" seminaries, but also maybe because of the russian system (an in other EO countries) there is a "bogoslovija" or "seminary" for those who are younger (usually in high school they would go to seminary as a vocational school instead of public high school).  Also they would have a "universitet" or "academija" where you would learn the higher end theology.  For example, there is the Great Lavra seminary by Moscow, and then the St. Sergius Academy in Paris.  Another example would be in Greece where you can go to any number of "high school" seminaries, but if you want to be a Grade A priest you would go to the theological school at the university of Athens, etc.  

In the HS seminaries you would definitely get your dogmatics, ethics, etc. PLUS a bigger focus on being a "seminarian" with duties following priests, bishops, swinging a sensor, etc. (St. Tikhon's).  At the universities you would focus more on academic research, theological reflection, and making everything you learned at HS seminary integrated and more well thought out, with higher level classes, etc. (St. Vladimir's).  

It is interesting because at HC we try to do both at the same time.  
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« Reply #18 on: April 14, 2009, 08:36:58 AM »

I would vote for a seminary in Missouri... Not just because I live here (though I probably wouldn't use it) but because of it's central location and the fact that two prime cities are located here. In fact, if you take 3 of the major cities, you have 3 aspects of the nation's culture combined into one state.

Kansas City being the easternmost "west coast city", St. Louis being the westernmost "east coast city" and Springfield being a southern (though distinctly Ozarkian) city.
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« Reply #19 on: April 14, 2009, 05:22:11 PM »

Well, considering that 299 million people live in the lower 48, and 2 million in AK and HI, doesn't it make sense that the seminaries would be located down here?

Source: AK census data (2007 est.)
HI census data (2007 est.)
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« Reply #20 on: April 14, 2009, 05:26:33 PM »

Well of course!

I'm surprised though that there are none on the west coast though - only on the east coast.
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« Reply #21 on: April 14, 2009, 05:31:44 PM »

Well of course!

I'm surprised though that there are none on the west coast though - only on the east coast.

Well, there is a much greater concentration of Orthodox parishes in the East/Central than in the South or West, which is why there are at least 6 seminaries in the area (GOA: Boston; OCA: NY & PA; SOC: Chicago; ACROD: Johnstown/Pittsburgh; ROCOR: NY).
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« Reply #22 on: April 14, 2009, 05:35:19 PM »

Personally (and I've alluded to this in the North American Unity discussion), I think (again, for Orthodox Unity purposes) there should only be two Theological Schools/Seminaries in the US: one in the East, one in the Central/West.  The plethora of schools could be condensed, maintaining language departments, separate Liturgics/Teleturgics and Music departments, while saving money on property/maintenance, and while promoting academic competition/creative tension within the departments (something which none of the schools really have, but they all really need, to keep from veering onto one extreme or another in the Orthodox theological spectrum).
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« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2009, 06:01:18 PM »

Well, it appears there is one Orthodox seminary in the Midwest:

St. Sava's Serbian Orthodox Seminary, in Libertyville, ILL.:

http://orthodoxwiki.org/St._Sava's_Serbian_Orthodox_Seminary_(Libertyville,_Illinois)

Does anyone know anything about this institution? Do they allow people to study there who belong to other Orthodox jurisdictions?
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« Reply #24 on: April 14, 2009, 06:04:41 PM »

But Cleveland:

Most of the population shift taking place in the US is *out* of the Northeastern states, such as New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The "Sun Belt" and southern states have been increasing -  both from US migration from the northeast and Midwest - as well as immigration from Latin American countries. This isn't news to anyone - it's a 30-year-old trend.

Perhaps the Orthodox churches in the US should look ahead at the demographics and put seminaries where people are moving to?
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« Reply #25 on: April 14, 2009, 06:09:41 PM »

But Cleveland:

Most of the population shift taking place in the US is *out* of the Northeastern states, such as New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The "Sun Belt" and southern states have been increasing -  both from US migration from the northeast and Midwest - as well as immigration from Latin American countries. This isn't news to anyone - it's a 30-year-old trend.

Perhaps the Orthodox churches in the US should look ahead at the demographics and put seminaries where people are moving to?

Which would probably be why Cleveland suggested placing one of two seminaries in the central part of the country.
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« Reply #26 on: April 14, 2009, 06:30:09 PM »

Well, it appears there is one Orthodox seminary in the Midwest:

St. Sava's Serbian Orthodox Seminary, in Libertyville, ILL.:

http://orthodoxwiki.org/St._Sava's_Serbian_Orthodox_Seminary_(Libertyville,_Illinois)

Does anyone know anything about this institution? Do they allow people to study there who belong to other Orthodox jurisdictions?

It's a pretty small institution (I included it in my list above); there's at least one person here with intimate knowledge of the place.
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« Reply #27 on: April 14, 2009, 06:31:27 PM »

But Cleveland:

Most of the population shift taking place in the US is *out* of the Northeastern states, such as New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The "Sun Belt" and southern states have been increasing -  both from US migration from the northeast and Midwest - as well as immigration from Latin American countries. This isn't news to anyone - it's a 30-year-old trend.

Perhaps the Orthodox churches in the US should look ahead at the demographics and put seminaries where people are moving to?

All of the seminaries were founded before the major demographic shift (i.e. pre-1970).  But, as Veniamin alluded to, I am in favor of shifting partially for that reason (and partially because I think we should only have 2 Theological/Seminary institutions at present for the US).
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« Reply #28 on: April 14, 2009, 09:55:58 PM »

Well, it appears there is one Orthodox seminary in the Midwest:

St. Sava's Serbian Orthodox Seminary, in Libertyville, ILL.:

http://orthodoxwiki.org/C

Does anyone know anything about this institution? Do they allow people to study there who belong to other Orthodox jurisdictions?

They probably do allow. it...They have Greek teachers there also ..Most of the seminarians that iv seen are Serbian ,Bosnian ,Macedonian,bulgarian.....


The New Gracanica Monastery in third lake ,Has a seminary also ,and it's not very far from St. Sava's Serbian Orthodox Seminary, in Libertyville, ILL.:
Mertopolitan Bishop Longin is at Gracanica monastery...Metropolitan christopher is in libertyville....

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« Reply #29 on: April 14, 2009, 10:43:07 PM »

Are Orthodox seminaries in the US attached to major Universities as they are in Australia?
For instance, if you study at St. Andrew's Theological College here (the GO Archdiocesan Seminary), you receive your degree from the University of Sydney.
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« Reply #30 on: April 14, 2009, 10:55:29 PM »

The only one that comes close would be Holy Cross, but it's a stretch to call Hellenic College a major university. 

Especially since it's not a university at all.  Tongue
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« Reply #31 on: April 14, 2009, 10:58:44 PM »

The only one that comes close would be Holy Cross, but it's a stretch to call Hellenic College a major university. 

Especially since it's not a university at all.  Tongue
Does Hellenc College issue its own degrees then? Is it not part of a University?
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« Reply #32 on: April 14, 2009, 11:02:33 PM »

Does Hellenc College issue its own degrees then? Is it not part of a University?

It issues its own degrees, but is not part of a university.  In the U.S., it's not uncommon for there to be standalone four-year colleges that offer bachelor's degrees, but nothing further. 
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« Reply #33 on: April 14, 2009, 11:06:37 PM »

Does Hellenc College issue its own degrees then? Is it not part of a University?

It issues its own degrees, but is not part of a university.  In the U.S., it's not uncommon for there to be standalone four-year colleges that offer bachelor's degrees, but nothing further. 
Thanks.
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« Reply #34 on: April 15, 2009, 12:03:36 AM »

Are Orthodox seminaries in the US attached to major Universities as they are in Australia?

The only one that comes close would be Holy Cross, but it's a stretch to call Hellenic College a major university. 

Especially since it's not a university at all.  Tongue

Well, in the sense that it does not have that title, sure.  But, HC/HC is usually referred to as such (with both sets of initials) since it is one educational institution comprised of two "colleges" (the undergraduate Hellenic College, and the graduate Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology); so, in a sense, it can resemble a small university in that it has multiple degrees through multiple individual colleges operating on one campus and as one corporate entity (Hellenic College, Inc.).

Both the undergraduate and graduate schools are fully accredited (although barely, it often seems), with the Undergraduate school offering 6  Bachelors degrees and 2 honorary Doctorates, and the Graduate school offering 3 Masters degrees.
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« Reply #35 on: April 15, 2009, 12:08:36 AM »

This is what I was told by the local OCA priest. St. Tikhon's teaches you HOW you cense, St. Vlad's teaches you WHY you cense, etc.
And Holy Cross teaches you what the PRICE is of the censor and how to get it on SALE!  

Gota finish the joke if you're gona tell it...lol.  


Not quite....

I heard it this way...that Holy Cross teaches you to Chant while Censing...then the two above. And that St. Herman's teaches you that *this* (pointing to the metal thing with bells and chains) is a Censer!
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« Reply #36 on: April 15, 2009, 07:51:10 AM »

Are Orthodox seminaries in the US attached to major Universities as they are in Australia?
For instance, if you study at St. Andrew's Theological College here (the GO Archdiocesan Seminary), you receive your degree from the University of Sydney.

This is what it's like in Canada, TOTA is connected to the University of Toronto.  I'm sure its very similar if not exactly the same system as St. Andrew's.  I believe also that the school in Montreal is the same system...
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« Reply #37 on: April 15, 2009, 07:52:22 AM »

Well, it appears there is one Orthodox seminary in the Midwest:

St. Sava's Serbian Orthodox Seminary, in Libertyville, ILL.:

http://orthodoxwiki.org/St._Sava's_Serbian_Orthodox_Seminary_(Libertyville,_Illinois)

Does anyone know anything about this institution? Do they allow people to study there who belong to other Orthodox jurisdictions?

Yes they do allow it, but most of the classes are taught in serbian...so that might be a problem for you. 
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« Reply #38 on: April 15, 2009, 07:56:44 AM »

This is what I was told by the local OCA priest. St. Tikhon's teaches you HOW you cense, St. Vlad's teaches you WHY you cense, etc.

And at Holy Cross you will learn where to buy one at a cheap price
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« Reply #39 on: April 15, 2009, 08:16:11 AM »

Are Orthodox seminaries in the US attached to major Universities as they are in Australia?

The only one that comes close would be Holy Cross, but it's a stretch to call Hellenic College a major university. 

Especially since it's not a university at all.  Tongue

Well, in the sense that it does not have that title, sure.  But, HC/HC is usually referred to as such (with both sets of initials) since it is one educational institution comprised of two "colleges" (the undergraduate Hellenic College, and the graduate Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology); so, in a sense, it can resemble a small university in that it has multiple degrees through multiple individual colleges operating on one campus and as one corporate entity (Hellenic College, Inc.).

Both the undergraduate and graduate schools are fully accredited (although barely, it often seems), with the Undergraduate school offering 6  Bachelors degrees and 2 honorary Doctorates, and the Graduate school offering 3 Masters degrees.

I'm aware that HCHC is usually referred to as one institution.  However, George's question concerned the seminary portion of the institution relative to the rest of it, so separating the names and referring to them individually was justified, even if a departure from standard practice.

However, it doesn't offer terminal degrees and is a liberal arts, rather than a research institution, which are some of the hallmarks of a true university.  I suppose another thing to consider is whether each HC issues its diplomas under its own or the combined name.  The former would suggest that they are academically separate but share facilities and administrative resources. 

(Disclaimer:  I'm not trying to knock HCHC, just to distinguish it and other colleges from research universities.)
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« Reply #40 on: April 15, 2009, 08:22:57 AM »

People that go to Holy Cross can take courses at other educational institutions in Boston/Cambridge. That could be beneficial..although Episcopal Devinity School is this side of being pagan
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« Reply #41 on: April 15, 2009, 08:26:33 AM »

I'm aware that HCHC is usually referred to as one institution.  However, George's question concerned the seminary portion of the institution relative to the rest of it, so separating the names and referring to them individually was justified, even if a departure from standard practice.

Oh, I understand the logic; I only thought of bringing up the combined reference since (a) he's not familiar with the system, apparently, and (b) because the undergraduate school has a degree that is essentially preparation for the Theological School (the seminarian-track BA in Religious Studies).

However, it doesn't offer terminal degrees and is a liberal arts, rather than a research institution, which are some of the hallmarks of a true university. 

Right.  It would be nice if they had the faculty for doctoral programs in Theology, and Masters programs as follow-ups to their undergraduate studies.  But not enough people, unfortunately.

I suppose another thing to consider is whether each HC issues its diplomas under its own or the combined name.  The former would suggest that they are academically separate but share facilities and administrative resources. 

I'll have to look when I get to work; the key will be whether the Theological School uses the College name on the diploma, which is one question I can answer just by flipping open the cover.

(Disclaimer:  I'm not trying to knock HCHC, just to distinguish it and other colleges from research universities.)
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« Reply #42 on: April 15, 2009, 08:27:31 AM »

People that go to Holy Cross can take courses at other educational institutions in Boston/Cambridge. That could be beneficial..although Episcopal Devinity School is this side of being pagan

Oh, yes, the BTI: Boston Theological Institute, made up of theological schools in the area (HC, BC, BU, Harvard Div, etc.) which allows cross-registration.
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« Reply #43 on: April 15, 2009, 01:59:59 PM »

I'm aware that HCHC is usually referred to as one institution.  However, George's question concerned the seminary portion of the institution relative to the rest of it, so separating the names and referring to them individually was justified, even if a departure from standard practice.

Oh, I understand the logic; I only thought of bringing up the combined reference since (a) he's not familiar with the system, apparently, and (b) because the undergraduate school has a degree that is essentially preparation for the Theological School (the seminarian-track BA in Religious Studies).

However, it doesn't offer terminal degrees and is a liberal arts, rather than a research institution, which are some of the hallmarks of a true university. 

Right.  It would be nice if they had the faculty for doctoral programs in Theology, and Masters programs as follow-ups to their undergraduate studies.  But not enough people, unfortunately.

I suppose another thing to consider is whether each HC issues its diplomas under its own or the combined name.  The former would suggest that they are academically separate but share facilities and administrative resources. 

I'll have to look when I get to work; the key will be whether the Theological School uses the College name on the diploma, which is one question I can answer just by flipping open the cover.

(Disclaimer:  I'm not trying to knock HCHC, just to distinguish it and other colleges from research universities.)

I just looked at my wife's diploma (she went to Hellenic College and got here BA there - in Human Development). 

It says that "upon the recommendation of the faculty of HELLENIC COLLEGE and the boar of trustees, have conferred upon X the degree of Bachelor of Arts"

The stamp at the bottomn has the name of both schools, and the logo of Holy Cross.  It is signed by the Archbishop (chairman of board of trustees), the president of the school (both schools) and the Dean of the College. 
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« Reply #44 on: April 15, 2009, 02:11:41 PM »

Well, the College degree will have the College name on it; the key was going to be if Holy Cross' has Hellenic College on it also (since Hellenic College is the name of the overarching corporate entity).

Indeed, it does, saying:

"HELLENIC COLLEGE
upon the recommendation of the Faculty of
HOLY CROSS
GREEK ORTHODOX SCHOOL OF THEOLOGY
and the board of trustees
have conferred on

The City of Cleveland
With High Distinction

The Degree of
Master of Divinity

with all the rights..."

So Hellenic College, as the overarching institution, confers the degrees, upon the recommendation of the faculty of each institution (College and Theological School).
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« Reply #45 on: April 15, 2009, 02:15:57 PM »

So, while not being a university, HCHC is still closer to the model that ozgeorge described than the rest of the North American seminaries.
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« Reply #46 on: April 15, 2009, 03:10:27 PM »

It says that "upon the recommendation of the faculty of HELLENIC COLLEGE and the boar of trustees, have conferred upon X the degree of Bachelor of Arts"

Well, I can't say I've encountered a trustee who was a boar, but we did help eat a boar named after a particularly disliked university president at a faculty cookout once.




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« Reply #47 on: April 15, 2009, 05:18:00 PM »

It says that "upon the recommendation of the faculty of HELLENIC COLLEGE and the boar of trustees, have conferred upon X the degree of Bachelor of Arts"

Well, I can't say I've encountered a trustee who was a boar, but we did help eat a boar named after a particularly disliked university president at a faculty cookout once.


I forgot to type the "d" give me a break!  lol.  I just noticed that too...freudian slip?   Grin
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« Reply #48 on: April 15, 2009, 05:18:34 PM »

Well, the College degree will have the College name on it; the key was going to be if Holy Cross' has Hellenic College on it also (since Hellenic College is the name of the overarching corporate entity).

Indeed, it does, saying:

"HELLENIC COLLEGE
upon the recommendation of the Faculty of
HOLY CROSS
GREEK ORTHODOX SCHOOL OF THEOLOGY
and the board of trustees
have conferred on

The City of Cleveland
With High Distinction

The Degree of
Master of Divinity

with all the rights..."

So Hellenic College, as the overarching institution, confers the degrees, upon the recommendation of the faculty of each institution (College and Theological School).

Boy is that scary, and not just the Cleveland part Wink Grin
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« Reply #49 on: April 15, 2009, 05:41:08 PM »

Boy is that scary, and not just the Cleveland part Wink Grin

Funny story - Fr. Tom forgot to read the "High Distinction" part when I walked across stage.
Of course, I could barely hear it - everyone was cheering the fact that they'd finally be rid of me... Wink
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« Reply #50 on: April 15, 2009, 05:43:47 PM »

Boy is that scary, and not just the Cleveland part Wink Grin

Funny story - Fr. Tom forgot to read the "High Distinction" part when I walked across stage.
Of course, I could barely hear it - everyone was cheering the fact that they'd finally be rid of me... Wink

Don't worry...C's get degrees! 
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« Reply #51 on: April 15, 2009, 05:50:19 PM »

Don't worry...C's get degrees!  

What, is that your class' rallying cry?
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« Reply #52 on: April 15, 2009, 10:49:27 PM »

Don't worry...C's get degrees!  

What, is that your class' rallying cry?

D is for Diploma.
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