WICHITA, Kan. – Tabor College’s M.A. in Entrepreneurial Ministry Leadership will change its name to Ministry Entrepreneurship and Innovation on July 1. The new name better reflects the well-rounded approach the degree offers students.
Rick Bartlett oversees the ministry programs at Tabor’s Wichita campus which is where the newly renamed MEI degree is housed. Bartlett says the program has built momentum in the first two years of its enrollment.
“The inaugural class graduated from the program this spring,” Bartlett said. “We are excited to see our alumni combine their passion with what they’ve learned to expand into new career opportunities.”
Students in the program won’t see a change to the courses they take or the instruction they receive. The name change is simply meant to give more information about what is offered.
“We’ve been searching for a better name for some time, and this best shares what we hope our students get out of the program,” Bartlett said. “Our students aren’t necessarily looking to become pastors or leaders in churches, although some will do that. They are interested in starting non-profits, building connections between business and service and changing the way we think about entrepreneurial leadership.”
One of the first graduates chose the degree because of the “choose your own adventure” nature of the program.
“When I embarked on this journey, I was torn on which route I was to go on,” Joseph Wuest, a May graduate, said. “I had a love for church planting, preaching, and youth ministry as well as working with college students in the higher education setting.”
Wuest has already started in a new role as Director of Student Life for Ohio Christian University—a career path he attributes to being part of the MEI program at Tabor.
“It is through this career and the knowledge I gained through my degree that I have the confidence to see opportunities and have the courage to create innovative ways to respond.” Wuest said.
Tabor’s unique course schedule makes it an ideal choice for working professionals interested in advancing their education. An intensive schedule provides for six weeks per course meaning students can focus on one subject at a time and complete the program at a pace that fits their lifestyle. All courses are offered online, adding to convenience for students. Faculty mentors for MEI students take this a step further to create a very tailored approach for each student, helping guide their specific area of interest.
One of most attractive parts of the MEI is the international experience. Each cohort of students spends 10-12 days abroad talking with and learning from entrepreneurs and business people who have found a way to fill a need in their community.
Recent graduate Aubrey Smith, an academic advisor for Tabor’s Wichita and online locations, found what she experienced during her trip Thailand to be eye-opening.
“Before the trip, I honestly had no expectation other than to be a learner,” said Smith. “I knew we would be observing the entrepreneurial work of Christian missionaries and ministry leaders overseas, but I had no idea the depth in which we would observe them.
“These entrepreneurs have an understanding that their work involves seeing a vision, adapting to changes in the vision and constant faith to carry it out,” she added. “That’s the life of an entrepreneur in Thailand.”
The first cohort of students under the Ministry Entrepreneurship and Innovation name will begin in September.
Visit tabor.edu/adult to read more about the MEI program and its graduates.