The North Carolina Theological Seminary has one mission — to develop the minds of those wishing to obtain more knowledge of God’s word by offering an academic Christian degree program here in Sampson County.
This Saturday, the seminary will hold its third graduation ceremony, with more than 150 students graduating with either an associate, bachelor, master or doctorate degree. According to NCTS founder and president Dr. Varnie N. Fullwood, the program offers students with an accelerated program.
In 1990, Mount Pleasant Missionary Baptist Church, where Fullwood is the senior pastor, served as a satellite location under Zoe University of Jacksonville, Fla. and offered a Christian education program. In 2005, the seminary connected with the North Carolina College of Theology out of Carolina Beach and continued in that capacity until 2013 when NCTS became accredited as its own institution.
According to Fullwood, during the school’s first graduation ceremony, there were 94 graduates. In 2015, during the second ceremony, that number grew, with 97 graduating. This year, Fullwood said there are 148 students who are slated to graduate, plus 22 at the satellite location in the Bahamas.
Mount Pleasant Baptist Church serves as the main campus for the seminary with 23 satellite locations in Georgia, Indiana, Chicago and Virginia. Fullwood said there are five new campuses set to open in September.
Registration for the next school year will begin in August and classes begin in September and end in April.
While enrolled in the school, students have classroom lectures and home study assignments. The class meets once a week, on Monday nights, for two hours. Obtaining and associate’s degree takes one year, a bachelor’s degree takes one year, a master’s degree takes two years and a doctorate takes one year.
“When our students graduate, they have worked hard,” Fullwood said.
NCTS is certified through the North Carolina Board of Governors, which certifies all college, and is accredited through Transworld Accrediting Commission International, the largest accreditation program.
For more information about the school, visit www.nctheologicalseminary.org.
Reach Kristy D. Carter at 910-592-8137, ext. 2588. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd. Like us on Facebook.