Union Theological Seminary (UTS)
New York NY 10027
Monday to Friday
9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Tel: (212) 662-7100
Dubbed as one of the most prestigious divinity school in the United States, UTS was founded in 1836. This institution is considered as one of the most liberal seminary school during the time of its foundation. This seminary institution houses the Burke Theological Library which has the reputation of being the largest theological library in the west. The library contains over 700,000 periodicals, manuscripts, scores, and historical material, some of which are rare.
The school was founded in the heart of New York City. Its founders, the New School Presbyterians, saw New York City, the fastest growing community in America, as an ideal place to groom future ministers, religious teachers, missionaries and other individuals that work in related fields. UTS believes that in order to address the spiritual needs of the city, the ministerial training must take place in the urban setting. This is one of the earliest seminary schools that admit students who belong in other denominations aside from the Presbyterianism.
UTS, lives up to its reputation as one of the most liberal seminary institutions through the different events that helped shape it into what it is today. In 1895, inspired by the Hull House in Chicago, members of the UTS Alumni Club decided to build the Union Settlement Association. Not only had the building of the Settlement Association become the highlight of that year, in 1895, Emily Grace Briggs, the first female student was admitted in the halls of Union as a special student and was allowed to take courses for credit.
In 1928-1973, Union had also established a well-known School of Music. The period between 1930s and 1940s saw a vigorous revival of Protestant theology through the efforts of both the student body and the faculty members of the school. Eunice Jackson became the first black female to graduate at Union in 1941. July 2008, Union elected its first female President, Serene Jones, who is a feminist theologian.
This wonderfully liberal school offers to its learners various programs where they can excel. UTS offers Master of Arts, Master of Divinity, Master of Sacred Theology, and Doctor of Philosophy programs. It also offers other degrees in its joint degree program with Columbia University.
In accordance with its motto, unity, truth, charity, Union supports various projects that promote these virtues. One of such projects is the Institute for Art, Religion and Social Justice that was founded in the spring of 2009. This project aims at exploring the relationship between art and religion and seeing them through the lens of social justice. Aside from the aforementioned projects, Union also supports other projects such as the drive for ecological justice and poverty initiative. The former recognizes the fact that ecological justice is an integral aspect of social justice. UTS addresses the latter project by gaining an award from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundations Pathways out of Poverty Program.
From its foundation until the present, Union Theological Seminary has lived up to its motto: Unity, Truth, Charity.