Supervised Ministries Policies

As an educational program of Yale University, the YDS Internship Office is bound to provide a safe and respectful learning environment for every student intern.  Sites, supervisor-mentors, and theological mentors are required to abide by the official policies of the Internship Office, Yale Divinity School, and Yale University.  Questions about the application of any policy should be directed to the Director of the Office of Supervised Ministries.

YDS Internship Policies

Yale Divinity School Policies

Yale University Policies

Policy on Accounting for Time During an Internship

One unit of supervised ministry requires 400 hours of “class time” to receive 6 credit hours from Yale Divinity School.

30 hours of this time is filled by Practicum, leaving 370 hours at the site.  During the school year, Practicum is held on campus from 4:00-5:30pm every Thursday.  For summer internships, Practicum is made up of 12 hours of on-campus meeting in May and 8 weekly web sessions lasting 2 hours each.  Students will not receive credit for supervised ministry if they miss more than 2 practicums each semester or 1 during the summer internship.  Supervisors are expected to support this course requirement by not scheduling internship responsibilities during these times. 
Time that can be included on the timesheet:
  1. Commuting time from YDS that is in excess of 1.5 hours round trip.  Commuting time that will be counted toward internship hours must be approved by the Director of Supervised Ministries prior to September 10.
  2. Time spent in preparation for internship, e.g., preparation of sermons, Bible studies, or presentations. Preparation time must be approved by the supervisor as an appropriate or realistic amount (e.g., it would be unrealistic to count 10 hours for sermon preparation).
  3. Time spent in weekly meetings with the supervisor/mentor (or supervisor and theological mentor)
Time that cannot be included on the timesheet:
  1. Time spent completing Practicum assignments
  2. Commuting time from YDS to site up to 1.5 hours round trip
  3. Commuting time during summer internships
  4. More than 10 hours in any one day (e.g., mission trips, retreats)
  5. Excessive time for preparation
  6. Time prior to the Sunday before classes start in August or the Sunday after finals are completed in May
It is by no means uncommon for students to complete more than 370 hours during an internship.  The timesheet is a tool for evaluating the demands on—and use of—the student’s time.  If a student records excessive hours, the topics of site expectations, sustainability, and self-care should be discussed with the supervisor-mentor and practicum facilitator.  If a student has too few hours, a discussion should address the learning goals, expectations, and plans for expanding the student’s activities.  A fillable timesheet is provided on the OSM website, or you can use an app like Super Tracker, etc.  Please total your hours before submitting the timesheet. 
The supervisor should review and sign the timesheet at the middle and end of each semester. Total hours will also be monitored by the Director of Supervised Ministries.

Policy for Addressing Conflict

If during the course of an internship the intern, supervisor, or Director of Supervised Ministries feels that a problem has arisen and the Learning Agreement is not being honored, the following steps are taken:

  1. The intern, supervisor, and Director meet at YDS to discuss the problem and attempt to identify a solution that will ensure learning on the part of the student while retaining the integrity of the internship.  If it is impossible to meet at YDS, other arrangements will be made.
  2. If necessary, a second meeting takes place within two weeks, involving other persons as applicable and appropriate.
  3. If a resolution is reached that involves continuing the internship, the Learning Covenant is modified as necessary and signed by all three.
  4. If the resolution involves terminating the internship, the Director writes an explanation and provides it to all parties, including the Dean of Academic Affairs and/or the Dean of Berkeley.
  5. In the case of disagreement, the Director makes a final decision about continuing or terminating the internship.
  6. In the event that an internship is terminated after the deadline for withdrawal, the student receives a No Credit grade and the Director’s written statement is placed in the student’s permanent academic file. Any appeal to remove the No Credit grade must be directed to the Professional Studies Committee.
  7. If the Director determines that the supervisor or site primarily caused the problem leading to the termination, the site will be reevaluated with respect to future participation in the part-time internship program. If the Director determines that the student primarily caused the problem, he or she will receive a notation on his or her transcript indicating a failure of supervised ministry.

In the event of illness or other serious problems that prevent the intern from fulfilling the Learning Covenant, the intern and/or supervisor notifies the Director of Supervised Ministries. If possible, the three arrange a leave of absence, after which the student works additional hours to compensate for lost time. If this is determined not possible, the student may withdraw from the internship (see # 6 above).

Deadlines and fees for terminating or withdrawing from an internship follow the same calendar and policies set by the Registrar, as for all courses. 

Yale Divinity School Inclusivity Statement

By history, intention, and design, the Yale Divinity School community embraces a wide range of Christian traditions. Committed to serving church and world, it also welcomes people of various religious and nonreligious traditions, drawing wide the circle to include myriad perspectives.

Seeking to foster the knowledge and love of God through critical engagement with the traditions of the Christian churches, the Divinity School upholds the value of broad inclusivity and diversity in our academic, worship, and communal life.

We celebrate the fullness of race and color; denominational, political, theological, and cultural difference; the range of expressions of sexual and gender identity; and the varied voices that come with age, life experience, national and community service, and socioeconomic status.

In ecumenical conversation and in the space created that crosses traditionally entrenched positions, profound educational value is gained and diverse perspectives are presented.

To this end, we foster inclusivity and diversity through our academic, social, and spiritual practices. At the core of our intention is the deliberate encouragement of conversation across the lines of difference; attention to offering access to all aspects of our common life; consistent sensitivity to the uniqueness of each person’s background; and particular attentiveness to our words in speech, writing, prayer, and praise.

We value the worth and dignity of every member of the Divinity School community, as we build an environment where inclusivity and diversity are central and consistently affirmed.

Adopted by the Yale Divinity School faculty, May 6, 2010.  Copied from the Student Handbook, pg. 61.


Yale Divinity School Statement on Inclusive Language 

A statement about inclusive language was adopted by the faculty in the spring of 1984 and sent as a pastoral letter to the YDS community.  

This statement can be found in the Student Handbook, pg 62.


Yale Divinity School Statement on Consensual Relations

The Yale Divinity School is a community in which members of the faculty mentor students to help them achieve their full academic, professional, and personal potential. Students rely on the other-centered character of faculty concern for them and approach the relationship in a spirit of trust. For these reasons, members of the YDS faculty shall not have amorous or sexual relations with a YDS student, defined as anyone taking a course at YDS, even when they are ostensibly consensual. This principle is supported by the School’s pedagogy with regard to relationships between a minister, priest, or lay professional and a member of the congregation in which he or she has a role of pastoral leadership. Just as we teach that such sexual relations are harmful to the congregant and to the ethos of the congregation as a whole, we take the same position with regard to faculty and masters-level students regardless of whether the faculty member in question has or might reasonably expect to have pedagogical or direct supervisory responsibilities over the student in question. This policy applies to all YDS faculty. YDS faculty are also subject to the University Policy on Teacher-Student Consensual Relations. The YDS policy does not pertain to relationships established before the student’s or the faculty member’s affiliation with YDS. In the case of these relationships, the University Policy does pertain: that is, the faculty members in question may not have direct pedagogical or supervisory responsibilities. Violations of the YDS or the University Policy by an instructor will normally lead to appropriate disciplinary action.

Adopted by the Yale Divinity School faculty, May 4, 2010. Copied from the Student Handbook, pg. 78.

Yale University Equal Opportunity Statement

The University is committed to basing judgments concerning the admission, education, and employment of individuals upon their qualifications and abilities and affirmatively seeks to attract to its faculty, staff, and student body qualified persons of diverse backgrounds. In accordance with this policy and as delineated by federal and Connecticut law, Yale does not discriminate in admissions, educational programs, or employment against any individual on account of that individual’s sex, race, color, religion, age, disability, status as a special disabled veteran, veteran of the Vietnam era or other covered veteran, or national or ethnic origin; nor does Yale discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity or expression.

University policy is committed to affirmative action under law in employment of women, minority group members, individuals with disabilities, special disabled veterans, veterans of the Vietnam era, and other covered veterans.

Inquiries concerning these policies may be referred to Valarie Stanley, Director of the Office for Equal Opportunity Programs, 221 Whitney Avenue; 3rd Floor, 203-432-0849.

Copied from Yale University Office for Equal Opportunity Programs Website

Yale University Statement and Procedures on Sexual Misconduct

Yale strives to be a community free of sexual misconduct by promoting the essential values of respect and responsibility, providing education, and working with students, faculty, and staff—a community that is safe and supportive for all. Yale takes all complaints and accusations of sexual misconduct seriously.

More information can be found in the Student Handbook on pages 74-77 about Title IX, the University-Wide Committee on Sexual Misconduct and Definitions of Sexual Misconduct, Consent and Harassment.


Office of Supervised Ministries

(203) 436-5703
(203) 432-5356