Yale Divinity School

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Yale Divinity School
Crest of the school, containing a book device inscribed with Hebrew letters and cross in front of a red background
Crest of the Divinity School, with the university's Urim V'Thummim device under a cross and halo
Motto Faith and Intellect: Preparing Leaders for Church and World
Established 1822 (1822)
Academic affiliation Yale University
Location New Haven, Connecticut, United States
Coordinates: 41°19′24″N 72°55′17″W / 41.32333°N 72.92139°W / 41.32333; -72.92139
Dean Gregory E. Sterling
Academic staff 114
Students 370[1]
Website divinity.yale.edu

Yale Divinity School is the divinity school of Yale University, in New Haven, Connecticut, preparing students for ordained or lay ministry, or for scholarly vocations. The school grants the Master of Divinity (M.DIV.) degree to graduates pursuing ordination, and the Master of Arts in Religion (M.A.R.) and Master of Sacred Theology (S.T.M.) degrees for graduates preparing for academic careers.


Sterling Divinity Quadrangle, campus of the Yale Divinity School

Theological education was the earliest academic purpose of Yale University. When Yale College was founded in 1701, it was as a college of religious training for Congregationalist ministers in Connecticut Colony, designated in its charter as a school "wherein Youth may be instructed in the Arts & Sciences who through the blessing of Almighty God may be fitted for Publick employment both in Church & Civil State." A professorship of divinity was established in 1746, and in 1822, a separate Theological Department developed, later known as the Yale Divinity School.[2] The first Bachelor of Divinity (B.D.) was conferred in 1867. In 1971 the Yale Corporation replaced the B.D. with the Master of Divinity degree.

Berkeley Divinity School affiliated with Yale Divinity School in 1971. While Berkeley retains its Episcopal Church connection, its students are admitted by and fully enrolled as members of Yale Divinity School. The Jonathan Edwards Center at Yale University, a division of the Divinity School, maintains a large collection of primary source materials about Jonathan Edwards, a 1720 Yale alumnus. The Yale Institute of Sacred Music (ISM) is jointly-affiliated with the Divinity School and School of Music. It offers programs in choral conducting, organ performance, voice, and church music studies, and in liturgical studies and religion and the arts.


Divinity Hall, occupied from 1870 to 1931, viewed from the New Haven Green.

When the department was organized as a school in 1869, it was moved to a campus across from the northwest corner of the New Haven Green composed of East Divinity Hall (1869), Marquand Chapel (1871), West Divinity Hall (1871), and the Trowbridge Library (1881). The buildings, designed by Richard Morris Hunt, were demolished under the residential college plan and replaced by Calhoun College.[3]

In 1929, the trustees of the estate of lawyer John William Sterling agreed that a portion of his bequest to Yale would be used to build a new campus for the Divinity School.[4] The Sterling Divinity Quadrangle, completed in 1932, is a Georgian-style complex built at the top of Prospect Hill. It was designed by Delano & Aldrich and modeled in part on the University of Virginia.

A $49-million renovation of Sterling Divinity Quadrangle was completed in 2003.

Notable alumni[edit]

Marquand Chapel on the Sterling Divinity Quadrangle

Notable professors[edit]


  1. ^ "YDS at a Glance". Yale Divinity School. Retrieved 9 March 2014. 
  2. ^ A General Catalogue of the Divinity School of Yale College: A Brief Biographical Record of Its Members in The First Half Century of Its Existence as A Distinct Department. New Haven: Tuttle, Morehouse, & Taylor. 1873. 
  3. ^ Yale's Lost Landmarks: Divinity Hall, Yale Alumni Magazine
  4. ^ Bedford, Steven (1998). John Russell Popoe: Architect of Empire. New York: Random House. pp. 166–168. ISBN 9780847820863. 
  5. ^ "Raymond Benjamin Culver". 1937-1938 Obituary Record of Graduates of Yale University (PDF). Yale University. 1938. pp. 137–138. 
  6. ^ "Faculty Members: Professor David Ford". University of Cambridge. 2011. Retrieved 23 May 2011. 
  7. ^ Bernstein, Adam. "Ernest W. Lefever dies at 89; founder of conservative public policy organization", Los Angeles Times, July 31, 2009. Accessed August 3, 2009.
  8. ^ Mooney, Tom, "Peter Pond's War," Providence Journal, Oct 15, 1989 p. M-06.

External links[edit]