Our Commitments

Founded in 1913, Northern Seminary is an evangelical community, rooted in Baptist heritage, passionately committed to graduate-level educational excellence with the mission of preparing women and men for effective leadership for the church of Jesus Christ.

We treasure these commitments:

GOSPEL: We live by personal faith in the good news of what God–Father, Son, and Holy Spirit–has accomplished in the incarnation, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ for the salvation of the world.

SCRIPTURE: We submit to the authority of the Word of God, incarnate in Jesus Christ, made known in the whole of scripture as the supreme authority for faith and practice.

MISSION: We are driven by God’s mission, which is both global and local, culturally engaged and holistically committed to evangelizing, discipling, and serving others with compassion.

LEADERSHIP: We prepare women and men, called by God, to exercise wisdom and vision when leading local churches and other ministries toward effectiveness and faithfulness.

FORMATION: We are committed to the spiritual formation of Christ-like leaders to nurture Spirit-formed communities by modeling personal wholeness, biblical faithfulness, and theological competence.

COMMUNITY: We celebrate a vibrant community, united in Christ, that welcomes women and men from every race, culture, generation, and denomination.

Northern Seminary has a unique personality. We are driven by the Mission of God, broadly evangelical, committed to the authority of scriptures and personal in our approach to education.

Global Ministry

Northern remains steadfast to the dream of its first president, Dr. John Marvin Dean, whose hope in 1913 was that alumni fearlessly spread the gospel far and wide and influence the world for Christ. Our alumni have served around the world in over 30 countries and in all 50 states.


Northern is focused on the authority of scriptures and how they impact and shape your ministry.


Focused on the Mission of God, Northern provides an education that brings together the best of theory and practice. Powerful ministry is based on an understanding of your ministry context and your ability to apply your knowledge.


From the quality of service to the mentoring relationships between our faculty and students, the Northern experience is personal in nature. We also care deeply about holistically developing leaders for ministry. Knowledge is not enough for transformational ministry. You must have knowledge, strong integrity, application and missional skills, self-awareness, and a deep relationship with Jesus Christ.


What do we mean by evangelical? We believe that to be evangelical is to be Christ-centered and to have an intensely personal, but not private, faith—because salvation in Christ compels us to share the Good News with others. It means being personally formed and transformed in holiness, experiencing life together in Christian fellowship with other believers, and having a commitment to the values of God’s Kingdom for social transformation.

Women in Ministry

Did you know that the first student to enroll at Northern Seminary was a woman? Amy Lee Stockton enrolled in 1913, graduated, and went on to become one of the nation’s leading evangelists–reaching thousands for Christ. Today, that tradition continues in the hundreds of women that have attended and graduated from Northern, and lead ministries in growing and vibrant churches.

Spiritual Formation

We believe spiritual formation is an integral part of the education process. Spiritual formation is as necessary to ministry training as theological reflection and practical hands-on experience. Through a process of self and group assessments, internship opportunities, student cohort groups, Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) and faculty guidance, students are strengthened personally, spiritually, and practically to understand themselves and others in Christ.


Since 1913, Northern Seminary has welcomed men and women from various Christian faith traditions, ethnic and cultural backgrounds, and ministry experiences. Our students have enrolled from almost 30 denominations and alumni have served in over 30 countries. Our students also range in age from recent college graduates to second career and retirees who have answered a call to ministry.

Alumni Impact

Our alumni were influential in founding Fuller, Denver and Moscow Theological Seminaries, Youth for Christ (Torrey Johnson), Christianity Today magazine (Carl Henry), and The Living Bible and Tyndale House Publishers (Ken Taylor). In fact, some of the evangelical world’s greatest names have either attended or graduated from Northern Seminary like: J. Edwin Orr, the international evangelist and revivalist historian; Peter Deyneka, Jr., founder of the Slavic Gospel Association and Deyneka Russian Ministries; V. Gilbert Beers, past editor of Christianity Today and President of “Kidbuilders”; Mel Lorentzen of the Billy Graham Center at Wheaton College; and Lou Rawls, Sr., of Tabernacle Baptist Church in Chicago. The list goes on! In fact, it’s difficult to imagine what the evangelical world would have looked like without Northern Seminary to provide a sound, evangelical theological education.


All of our faculty have been called to ministry at some point in their lives, and their teaching reflects that calling. In fact, many still serve in churches or para-church ministries. Students can trust that members of our faculty are aware of the challenges and rewards of ministry because they have experienced them firsthand.


Northern Seminary is accredited by Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools.

See Northern Seminary’s ATS profile. The Commission contact information is: The Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools 10 Summit Park Drive Pittsburgh, PA 15275 USA Telephone: 412-788-6505

Every Christian believer is called by God’s grace into sanctified living to become more Christ-like in holiness. Especially because a seminary seeks to develop leaders for the Church, we hold one another to high standards in our work, study, relationships, and ministry, seeking to develop spiritual maturity that evidences the fruit of the Spirit. Commitment to right living in Christ produces a radical common witness to God’s power at work to redeem, restore, and empower God’s people in God’s mission to transform the world.

Christian formation and community are core values of Northern Seminary and are, therefore, foundational to these Standards. All members of the community-employees, students, board members, and residents-are called to respect one another in regard to diversity of denomination, ethnicity, culture, and calling. All members are expected to refrain from behavior which Scripture forbids, including sexual misconduct (sexual relations outside of marriage, sexual harassment, sexual abuse, same-gender sexual relations, use of pornography), theft, academic or personal dishonesty, substance abuse, misuse of property, threats to health and safety of others, physical or emotional abuse (including intimidation or bullying), misogyny, financial irresponsibility, disrespect to seminary employees and students, or violation of housing rules and campus regulations. These behaviors destroy community and the personal wholeness which Christ purchased through his life, death, and resurrection.

The Seminary may deny admission, place on probation, suspend, expel, withhold a degree, terminate employment, or take other action in response to personal conduct outside of these Standards. Please refer to the Northern Seminary Catalog, Faculty Handbook, Employee Handbook, or Student Housing Manual for policy statements governing institutional disciplinary processes.


Northern Baptist Theological Seminary affirms its evangelical heritage through its commitments to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and the authority of scripture. The seminary offers an educational context that is international, interracial and intercultural for the preparation of men and women who are called by God and empowered by the Holy Spirit for the mission of Christ in the world and ministries of the church. The strategic role of the seminary is to educate leaders who will be personally whole and spiritually mature, Biblically grounded and theologically competent, pastoral, evangelistic and prophetic.

In partnership with the American Baptist churches and in cooperation with the wider church, the seminary commits itself to excellence in the pursuit of this mission.

Adopted by the Board of Trustees June 6, 1991.


Our vision is to prepare leaders who will faithfully serve Jesus Christ with evangelical passion and missionary skills in biblically grounded and culturally relevant ministries.

Adopted by the Board of Trustees June 4, 1999.

Latest Blog Entry

Expanded Mission in 2023

By: Northern Seminary

by William D. Shiell Northern Seminary is expanding our mission in 2023 even as we celebrate 110 years of ministry. With students, subscribers, and participants from 40 states and 10…

Read Post View All Posts

Ready to start your seminary Experience?

Apply Now