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News from the Hill December 21, 2010 | back to index

Andover Newton Theological School and City Year Announce give a year Partnership

Andover   Newton Theological   School, the nation’s oldest graduate theological school, and City Year, Inc., a national youth service organization, have formed a partnership to offer scholarships for theological education to City Year young leaders, alumni and staff.

The new give a year Partnership will unite Andover Newton   Theological School with City Year to develop tomorrow’s leaders and incorporate service as an integral part of the higher education experience. Through give a year Partnerships,  colleges and universities highlight their commitment to service by providing financial scholarships and recognition to students who give a year or more of service to their communities through City Year. The name of the partnership is derived from City Year’s tagline: “give a year. change the world.”

As part of the give a year Program, Andover Newton will award qualified City Year alumni and staff who are admitted with a scholarship the equivalent of 30%  tuition in any of Andover Newton’s degree programs, which include Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Theological Studies,  Master of Arts in Theological Research, Master of Arts in Religious Education and Doctor of Ministry. Students already admitted to Andover Newton may elect to defer their enrollment or take an educational leave to serve with City Year.

Young adults who complete the service and leadership components of City Year and earn a degree with a give a year Partner School develop a unique combination of skills and knowledge, leadership qualities and lifelong commitment to service.

Andover Newton’s hallmark emphasis is on the practical application of theology, preparing its students for hands-on leadership. The school closes twice a year for days of community service, and field education and Border Crossing Immersions are required.  This educational model aligns very closely with City Year’s approach to developing leaders for life. Admissions officers at Andover Newton Theological   School believe these qualities make City Year alumni and staff   well-suited to Andover Newton’s service-oriented curriculum. Dr.  Nancy Nienhuis, Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and Dean of Students at Andover Newton sees the give a year program as first among a new set of creative projects her staff is launching.  According to Nienhuis, “Andover Newton is embarking on an ambitious program for reinventing theological education with partner seminaries, including Meadville Lombard Theological School based in Chicago.   When we began to look for organizations which develop a “passionary”  service ethic where we could find students poised to succeed here, City Year stood out as an ideal program.” 

Andover Newton joins more than 20 other graduate programs and five undergraduate schools in nine states already affiliated with City Year as give a year Partners. Andover Newton becomes the first seminary to partner with City Year.

"City Year’s vision is that a year of service will become a civic rite of passage for all young adults," says Pete November, City Year’s VP for Recruitment, Admissions and Alumni Affairs, "As alumni of Andover Newton and City Year, these dedicated volunteers will become thoughtful,  hands-on action-oriented leaders who serve others and transform lives."

City Year and Andover Newton encourage other colleges and universities to consider the value of inspiring students to give a year of service with City Year as part of their college education and become give a year Partners.

For more information on this give a year Partnership, please visit or