Lisle Center
Center for
Northern Live

Welcome to the New Northern

We’re committed to making theological education more accessible for all students, regardless of where they live and where they’re called to serve.

That’s why we’re opening a new center this fall in Lisle, a western suburb of Chicago, and establishing our new Center for Urban Leadership, which will address the needs of South Side churches.

These two new centers will complement and strengthen our existing Lawndale Center on Chicago’s West Side and Northern Live, our Live Streaming Seminary program. Together, our three physical centers and Northern Live will equip students with the tools they’ll need to faithfully pastor with evangelical passion and missionary skills, wherever they go on to serve.

Lisle Center

Our-state-of-the-art Lisle Center (410 Warrenville Road) will provide students with smart classrooms, inviting collaboration spaces and convenient access to Northern’s world-renowned faculty members and an array of student services.

  • Nearly 23,000 square feet of smart classrooms, conference rooms, offices, common areas and library space.
  • Library includes private study spaces, group study/meeting spaces and a private collections room.
  • Main floor houses classrooms, offices, student services, balconies, coffee-shop style gathering area and large dividable assembly room.
  • Features floor-to-ceiling glass that provides views of the Morton Arboretum and allows natural light to fill the space.
  • Large assembly room includes theater lighting and sound system. Room can be divided into three smart classrooms or expanded for meetings or use as a preaching lab.
  • High-tech meeting spaces support video conferences, conference calls and live-streaming video.
  • Ergonomic, modular furniture will enable students and faculty to reconfigure rooms and gathering spaces for different purposes.
  • Entire space will be outfitted with LED light fixtures, and as many components as possible are sourced from recycled/recyclable materials.
  • Free on-site parking.
  • Prominently located next to the I-88/I-355 interchange, less than seven miles from Lombard.
  • Students, faculty and staff will have opportunities this spring to provide input and feedback on the center’s furniture and interior finishes.
  • View images of the new Lisle Center here.

Center for Urban Leadership

Our new Center for Urban Leadership will be home to our new master’s program in Urban Leadership, which will be offered in partnership with Chicago’s New Life Covenant Church Southeast.

  • Our new Master of Arts in Urban Leadership will train culturally competent ministers for urban congregations.
  • The program will focus on African-American and multicultural congregations and communities and was developed through conversations with South and West Side pastors, New Life leaders and Northern alumni and students.
  • Students will engage with complex social and cultural issues facing urban communities, including systemic racism, poverty, violence and incarceration, and will exegete their cultural contexts using ethnographic skills.
  • This practical approach will build on a foundation of biblical knowledge, theology, and church history, focusing on black theology and the history of the urban church in America. Leading practitioners in urban ministry will train students in preaching, evangelism, conflict mediation, and pastoral care.
  • Learn more about the Master of Arts in Urban Leadership at

Lawndale Center

We are expanding the curriculum offered at our Lawndale Center on Chicago’s West Side, including the addition of courses in our Doctor of Ministry in Christian Community Development program. Established in 2008 in partnership with Lawndale Community Church, the Lawndale Center has given Northern students the ability to immerse themselves in an urban setting while studying topics around community development, urban ministry, youth subculture, and much more.

  • Based at Lawndale Community Church, 3827 W. Ogden Avenue.
  • The church was founded in 1978.
  • The church’s medical clinic serves over 140,000 patients each year.
  • The church helps operate multiple houses that help individuals gain life skills and grow in faith.
  • The church helps operate a development corporation that renovates buildings to improve the community.
  • The church’s founder, Northern graduate Wayne “Coach” Gordon, is also the founder and president of the Christian Community Development Corporation, which has over 500 member churches.
  • All courses at the Lawndale Center involve personal interaction with local pastors and ministry leaders who have experience in urban ministry.

Northern Live

We are expanding the classes offered through Northern Live, our popular Live Streaming Seminary program that enables students to learn and engage directly with classmates and professors from anywhere in the world. This includes the development of a fully-online, live-streamed Master of Divinity program.

  • Northern Live eliminates location as an obstacle to theological education.
  • Smart classroom technology enables students to interact with faculty and students in real time.
  • Students can earn a master’s degree without leaving their homes and faith communities.
  • Programs currently offered through Northern Live include our Master of Arts in New Testament and our Master of Arts in Theology and Mission.
  • Apply and learn more at

Greater Cincinnati Center

In Fall 2018, Northern opens its Greater Cincinnati Center, located at Tabernacle Bible Church City of Promise, 1260 Hicks Blvd, Fairfield, OH.

Most classes in each program are offered via Northern’s unique interactive live-streaming technology. Smart classroom technology enables you to engage in a vibrant classroom experience and interact with Northern’s premier faculty and other students in real time, earning a Masters degree with a cohort of learners.

The programs also entail travel to occasional one-week intensive classes in Chicagoland (see each program page below for details). Programs intentionally begin face-to-face on the main campus in order to build relationships that will last for the duration of the program. Low-cost housing accommodations are available.

Northern offers three programs at the Greater Cincinnati Center: