As part of the Field Education program, each supervisor commits to:

  • Engage the student in an exploration of pastoral and leadership identity as well as vocational goals
  • Set aside time to think theologically and reflect with the student regarding the practice of ministry
  • Attend an orientation session in September or May

"Every year Duke Divinity School helps set the table where students, staff, congregation members, and neighbors teach and learn from one another. What a feast! We all grow in our commitment to Christ and the renewal of the church."

Supervising a Student 

Supervisors assume a critical role in the shaping of the next generation of Christian leaders. Hosting a student requires careful planning; focused attention; and sustained, intentional supervision. Student presence does not relieve supervisors of responsibilities and obligations but can actually increase them, due to the intentionality which supervision requires.

Supervisors should possess personal security, confidence, and strong skills in communication. Supervision requires commitment to disciplined theological reflection with the student, exploration of meaning in ministry, and an ability to incarnate that meaning. Potential supervisors should examine their continuing call, their willingness, and their ability to enter into this special ministry before assuming this important role.

Review the Field Education Policies & Procedures Manual (below) to learn more about the supervisor’s role including:

  • Prerequisites to supervising a field education student
  • Responsibilities of the supervisor
  • Skills of supervision
  • The supervisory conversation
  • Sexual ethics
  • The broader context of supervision
  • Supervision in an international field education setting
  • Welcoming the student intern

Hosting an Intern

As part of the Field Education program, each placement commits to:

  • Assign a supervisor who will mentor the student.
  • Appoint Lay Mentors to engage the student in discerning vocational goals and practicing the skills of ministry. Share the article Fostering a Mentoring Environment with team members.
  • Provide the student with a stipend and reimbursement for expenses.
  • Provide housing for summer placements.
  • Participate in the evaluative process.

Field settings are teaching arenas for contextual learning. For some students, these settings will be the introduction to, and only exercise of, ministerial leadership prior to assuming their first appointment, call, or ministerial position. Contextual learning contributes directly to students’ understanding and practice of ministry within the community of faith.

The Divinity School seeks field settings that are “called” to participate in ministerial formation. Supervisors and their constituencies who are excited about ministry, eager to share it with others, capable of welcoming and caring for a stranger in their midst, and willing to take time and energy to teach and learn from students about the nature and meaning of ministry, prove to be outstanding field settings.

Review the Field Education Policies & Procedure Manual (below) and learn more about the hosting process including:

  • Expectations of the Field Setting
  • Expectations of Lay Leadership
  • Considerations for Hosting a Summer Intern
  • The Lay Training Committee
  • Field Placement Settings and Student Housing
  • Welcoming the Student Intern
Policy and Procedures Manual