Southwestern Seminary, Prestonwood Baptist Church announce internship partnership

Staff
| Jul 9, 2021

Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and Prestonwood Baptist Church have entered into a partnership in which academic credit can be earned through the church’s internship program, President Adam W. Greenway and Pastor Jack Graham announced July 8.

“The Southwestern-Prestonwood partnership is the epitome of our ‘ministry begins now’ commitment,” said Greenway. “Whenever Southwestern Seminary can partner with a Southern Baptist church to facilitate the best of theological education, it’s a win for our institution and it’s a win for the congregation. Most of all, however, it’s a win for Christ’s Kingdom and advancing the Gospel. It’s Southwestern’s honor to help advance Prestonwood’s internship program with this new partnership.”

Graham echoed Greenway’s enthusiasm for the partnership.

“I am more excited than ever about the future as we walk hand-in-hand with Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary leaders in this new internship partnership,” said Graham. “We look forward to the impact this partnership will have in our communities, our nation and the ends of the earth.”

Graham, who has been pastor of Prestonwood in Plano, Texas, since 1989 and who is a former president of the Southern Baptist Convention, said the internship program is driven by his passion to prepare future Christian ministers.

“One of my greatest passions in ministry is developing the next generation of Christian leaders who will stand boldly in their faith, never compromising their beliefs or biblical worldview in this ever-shifting culture,” he said. “Over the years, the Prestonwood Internship Program has raised up incredible leaders – young men and women of God who have experienced dynamic worship, excellent ministry practice, great service opportunities, and participation in a discipleship and mentorship program that deepens their faith and strengthens the uniqueness and influence of their calling.” 

Students enrolled in the Prestonwood Internship Program gather with Southwestern Seminary President Adam W. Greenway and Prestonwood Baptist Church Pastor Jack Graham following the signing of the partnership.

According to Jonathan Teague, director of the Prestonwood Internship Program, eligible students must have a clear call to vocational ministry, become a member of Prestonwood, commit to one year of service, and may participate up to two years in the program. Students in the program, which includes both men and women, must be in good academic standing, participate within 10 years of high school graduation, and affirm the internship covenant.

Benefits of the program include:

  • experience on-site practical training in ministry;
  • work one-on-one with divisional minister in designated area of service;
  • teach and/or lead on a regular basis;
  • have the opportunity to be discipled and learn methodologies and leadership practices from seasoned ministers;
  • have the privilege to disciple and invest in members of the church;
  • learn from senior-level ministers at ongoing, weekly resident development meetings that include free resources to help further education;
  • have the opportunity to apply what is learned in the seminary classroom at the local church level; and 
  • receive pay and a matriculation benefit each semester to assist with the cost of purchasing books and materials.

Southwestern Seminary President Adam W. Greenway and Prestonwood Baptist Church Pastor Jack Graham fist bump following filming a video about the Prestonwood Internship Program.

According to Karen Gilstrap, registrar at Southwestern Seminary, Prestonwood Internship Program participants may earn up to 26 hours of academic credit toward the Master of Divinity degree in the School of Theology, Roy J. Fish School of Evangelism and Missions, and the Jack D. Terry School of Educational Ministries.

The next internship class will launch in August. For more information about the Prestonwood Internship Program, how to apply, and to schedule an interview, visit www.prestonwood.org/internship, email internship@prestonwood.org, or call 972-930-4461. For more information about Southwestern Seminary, go to www.swbts.edu/prestonwood.