Student Life

Experiencing life at Western brings many things...

  • Daily Worship in Mulder Chapel

    The corporate worship of God is a deeply formative activity – spiritually, educationally, and institutionally; it is at the heart of what we do here at Western Theological Seminary. So every day we gather as a community to pray for ourselves and for our world, to sing and to be silent, to confess and receive pardon, to testify to God’s grace and lament our world’s brokenness, to praise and to petition, to proclaim, celebrate the sacrament of the Lord's Supper together, and to enact the good news.

    Where and when is chapel held?

    Chapel is held in Mulder Chapel and begins at 9:40am. We meet each morning during a break in the schedule expressly devoted to being and building community. Services are usually 20 minutes long.

    What are the services like?

    Our pattern Monday through Thursday conforms to the structure of daily prayer followed for centuries by the precursors of academics, the medieval monks. It has four primary components: Praise, Psalm, Proclamation, and Prayer.

    • Services begin with an acknowledgement of who God is, and the natural response to that knowledge, Praise.
    • We then turn to the ancient prayer-book of God’s people, the Psalms, and pray one of them as our own, in word or song or images or actions.
    • The Word is then Proclaimed as a way of telling God’s story, of getting a God’s-eye view of the world the way it really is.
    • Finally, we focus on Prayer as the place where we re-present the world and its concerns to God, where God and God’s people speak to one other heart to heart.

    Who leads the services?

    Students plan and lead services Monday through Thursday with the assistance of faculty and members of the Worship Committee. Faculty lead worship of Friday as the WTS community participates in our weekly practice of coming around the Lord's Table to celebrate Holy Communion and to “taste and see” how good God is.

  • Formation for Ministry Internships


    Internships are part of the formation for ministry process at Western Theological Seminary and provide a breadth of experience while going deep through the use of learning covenants and case studies of actual ministry experience.

    In-residence M.Div. students will participate in four 100-hour part-time units and one 400-hour full time unit of a supervised in-ministry experience within an approved ministry setting.

    Distance learning students will participate in six 130-hour units of a supervised in-ministry experience during the five years of the program.

    Ministry settings may include:

    • Congregations
    • Hospitals
    • Faith-based agencies
    • Parachurch Ministries
    • Campus Ministry
    • Care Facilities and nursing homes
  • Campus Housing

    We want to offer housing options that will help you connect with other students and feel at home. Options for in-residence program housing include:

    The “Red Bricks” Townhouses

    • Directly across from the seminary
    • Encircle a commons area with picnic tables and a playground
    • 1, 2, or 3 bedroom units
    • Air-conditioned
    • Washer & dryer
    • Major kitchen appliances
    • Handicapped accessible units available
    • Wireless internet and wired for cable

    The Friendship House

    The Ralph and Cheryl Schregardus Friendship House is the first residence of its kind among seminaries across the U.S. Seminary students live with young adults with cognitive impairments, giving students who are training for ministry a unique opportunity to learn what it’s like to live with disabilities.

    • 3 students and one cognitively-impaired adults per apartment pod
    • Each apartment pod has 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, full kitchen, living room, and a deck/patio
    • 6 apartment pods in the building
    • Recreational room with widescreen TV, fireplace, and full kitchen
    • Wireless internet and wired for cable

    Other options

    The seminary owns traditional apartments and houses near campus. Alternative housing and rental units are available in the Holland area as well.


    Housing ranges from $330-$815 per month depending upon the location and number of bedrooms in the unit.

    Housing Policy information.

    For questions or to apply for housing contact Norm Donkersloot at 616-392-8555, x107 or

    Distance Learning Intensive Lodging

    Lodging options for distance learning intensives will be sent to students prior to the start of the semester. These options will vary in price and will be the responsibility of the student to secure. Please call Kathy Ehmann (616-392-8555 x186) with any questions.

  • A Place to Talk


    At an offsite restaurant (this year's location TBD), we gather at the end of a busy week and talk about life. We reflect especially on what is important to us as pastoral leaders. So come and listen, deepen your relationships, and form your pastoral identity as we discover what it means to be a Christian leader in today’s world.

    In this way, faculty and students meet in a different role and place, providing a casual forum for open discussion and reflection. Do empower yourself to raise the topic or issue you would like to address or the story you would like to share. All are welcome.

  • Campus Events

    In addition to annual events like the All-Seminary Picnic, Spring Banquet and the Annual Golf Outing, students at Western regularly participate in a variety of activities.  Each year students, faculty and staff battle it out in the March Madness Table Tennis Tournament--See more photos on our Facebook page!


  • Confessions on Tap


    Students, faculty, and staff gather to explore a particular point in the Reformed confessions and its implication for congregational ministry. It is held once a month on a Friday at 4pm at the New Holland Brewery. Come, find us there and enjoy a water, beer, or Coke while engaging in good conversation.

    We always welcome new conversation partners, so try it out!

    "Confessions on Tap" is co-led by Dr. J. Todd Billings and a pastor in congregational ministry. See Happenings (Student Events) for the current schedule.

    Questions? Contact Dr. Todd Billings.

  • Student Government

    Student Council advocates for student concerns and provides programming that engages the entire student body.  The council is made up of representatives from each class and a faculty advisor and meets regularly throughout the academic year.

    Student Government responsibilities:

    • Social activities
    • Addressing academic concerns
    • Common worship
    • Involvement in mission
    • Social action

    The 2014-2015 Student Government Body:

    • President: Jake Parks
    • Vice-President: Beth Jarvis
    • Treasurer: Kara Lepley
    • Secretary: TBA
    • Junior Representatives: Maxwell Nkansah 
    • Middler Representatives: Paige Douglas & Jeffrey Hubers
    • Senior Representatives: Calandra Hackler & Jenna Brandsen
    • Th.M. Representative:
    • Faculty advisor: Dr. John Brogan
  • Parents Night Out


    Throughout the year Student Council organizes planned childcare events at the seminary, staffed by student volunteers, allowing busy parents to get a break and enjoy a relaxing evening out.

Call Western Seminary


616.392.8555 or 800.392.8554




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