Fourteen students are the first graduates of Wesley Seminary at Indiana Wesleyan University to have earned a Master of Divinity degree. The August 11th graduation marked a significant milestone for the seminary, which opened in 2009. 

“This was truly a group of pace-setters…not only because they were first, but because they pioneered a truly unique M.Div. integrating the disciplines (Bible, theology and history) with ministry practice and completing a spiritual formation emphasis throughout the program, all while serving in their ministry contexts,” said Dr. Wayne Schmidt, Wesley Seminary Vice President.  The M.Div. requires a minimum of three years of studies.

Fifteen Master of Arts seminary graduates joined the first class of M.Div. graduates.

The first seminary M.Div. graduates were:  Aaron Vaughn Gross, Dustin Lawrence Jones, Eric M. Key, Joel Christopher Liechty, Joshua S. Bowlin, Bart Andrew Hall, Tyler Hettich, Marc Lehman Kelley, Ian Edward Nacy, Justin J. Nierer, David Wayne Norman, Jessica L. Schmerse, Timothy E. Stradling and Paul Vincent Tillman. 

“The great thing for me,” said Dr. Ken Schenck, Wesley Seminary Dean, “was that the graduation of these students didn’t feel like an ending.  It felt like our fellowship and relationship had just moved to the next level and was more vibrant than ever.”

Governor Sam Brownback of Kansas provided the commencement address. Brownback advised graduates to pursue their dreams not only for themselves, but for those whom they will serve by accomplishing the calling that God has put into their hearts.