(406) 404-1600

Getting to Know Yellowstone Theological Institute

When it comes to creating deeper, more meaningful connections to God and choosing
the place where you’ll continue to grow and learn, we understand you’ll likely have
questions. To make it easier, read our most frequently asked questions below.

Academics

Is YTI accredited?

As a new institute for theological study, we are actively pursuing full accreditation. The private Council for Higher Education Accreditation, via their affiliate, the Association of Theological Schools, conducts the review. The process takes five to six years and begins after our first class has graduated in 2021. YTI is on track for full membership in 2026. Once YTI’s accreditation has been confirmed by ATS, all student degrees will be retroactively recognized with full status.

What advanced degrees are offered?

We offer three master’s degrees: Master of Divinity, Master of Arts, and Master of Theology.

Do you offer other programs?

Our Diploma of Christian Theology program delivers a basic, yet thorough, foundation for ministry. We also offer Local Community Learning Initiative classes where students and the general public come together for theological discourses on varied Christian subjects.

What is a typical time frame to earn a Master of Divinity degree?

The residential Master of Divinity degree is a three-year program.

Do you offer internships?

Our Yellowstone Journeyman Program is not an internship. It is a one-year certificate program built around a real-world exposure to life in a ministry. The program prepares young men and women at least 18 years of age who have graduated from high school or college an opportunity to gain practical ministry knowledge. Students attend YTI classes in the morning and work in a ministry setting they arrange during afternoons and evenings.

When does the school year begin and end?

Courses are offered from September through May each year in Fall, Winter and Spring quarters.

Can I earn a degree online?

Students can take most courses online, attending on-campus classes via our live online video feed. A few practical courses may only be taken in person, however. So, while a student cannot earn a degree online, a majority of required classes can be taken online.

How many members on the YTI faculty and staff?

YTI has 11 faculty members and seven staff members serving students on our Bozeman campus.

What is the teacher-to-student ratio?

The teacher-to-student ratio at YTI is about 1:6. This ratio allows for deeper conversations between teacher and students and more focused attention on topics of the day.

Where do your students come from?

We accept students from across the U.S. and countries around the world.

What career opportunities await graduates with a master’s degree from YTI?

Graduates embark after their YTI education ready to minister to a congregation, shepherd a nonprofit ministry, lead with love in a business organization, serve as a chaplain, or apply their expertise as a therapist or counselor. We challenge our graduates to strive for innovation in whatever occupation they choose, whether as a pastor, educator, engineer or other professional.

Does YTI help students with job placement after their degree is earned?

After students graduate, YTI offers advice and support as they look for a job. Though we don’t provide job placement services, our relationships with many ministries and organizations often provide leads on career opportunities.

Finances

What is the cost of tuition and fees each year?

Here at YTI, we place a concentrated effort to keep tuition low by having a central campus and an emphasis on endowment giving. Many other seminaries cost significantly more than YTI and students often leave with nearly $80,000 of student-loan debt. At YTI, tuition and fees average around $9,000 annually, for a total of $27,000 for a three-year master’s degree.

Does YTI offer scholarships?

Yes, YTI does offer tuition scholarships for students in our Master of Divinity and Master of Arts programs. Once you are accepted, you are automatically considered for a scholarship based on your GPA and financial needs.

Is it possible for students to work full time and attend school full time?

Yes. Many students balance full-time work and their YTI studies. Certain classes are only offered during the day, while others may only be available at night. We work to accommodate our students’ schedules whenever possible.

Do I have to live on campus?

Students are not required to live on campus. They can choose to live on campus in one of YTI’s two townhouses or find an apartment off campus in Bozeman.

What are housing costs for YTI?

Costs vary based on whether you prefer a private or shared room in one of our two townhouses. For specific information, including rates and details, email msmith@ythi.org.

How much does it cost to live in Bozeman?

The Bozeman area has a robust rental market, with prices that range from around $998 for one-bedroom apartments to $1,400 for two-bedroom apartments.

Applications

What are the prerequisites for acceptance into YTI?

To apply to a master’s program, a bachelor’s degree from an accredited U.S. institution or foreign university equivalent is required, with a minimum GPA of 3.0 overall. Applicants who are not native English speakers must provide proof of English proficiency.

For the Diploma of Christian Theology program, a high school diploma or equivalent is preferred.

How many references are required in an application?

Three references are to be included in application for admission to a master’s program.

  • From a pastor
  • From an academic (professor)
  • From an employer or church leader

One reference from a pastor is required in applications for the Diploma of Christian Theology program.

Do you give tours to prospective students?

Yes, we love to give tours. During our Discovery Days, prospective students arrive on a Friday and, in the course of a three days, meet YTI’s president, faculty and staff members, tour the campus and Bozeman area and attend Monday classes. Can’t make it to one of our Discovery Days events? Contact us to arrange a personalized visit at 406-404-1600 or information@ythi.org.

I’ve applied to YTI; what’s next?

Upon completion of your application [link to application page], you will receive an email within 24 hours letting you know next steps, your acceptance status and more. You can also call our office at 406-404-1600 for specific questions related to your application.

About Our Institute

Is YTI affiliated with a specific church or religious group?

No, YTI is not connected to, affiliated with or endorsed by a particular church or organized religion. Instead, YTI embraces a church that is inclusive and encompassing, while affirming Christ-based values, teaching and beliefs through the primary use of scriptures. We are intentionally nondenominational and prepare students with education and learnings that reach beyond singular church beliefs.

What are the key values of YTI?

At YTI, our mission is to help students and communities experience deeper, more meaningful and stronger connections to God. Our values place God first, while we’re courageous and kind in our ideas and beliefs as we build leaders in today’s church.

What makes YTI different from other organizations?

Simply put, there is no school that is doing what YTI is doing. YTI has designed a curriculum that crosses interfaith boundaries and allows for authentic human connections. YTI understands that while everyone is on their own journey of faith, church and spirituality, we are here to help bridge differences by encouraging a civil discourse around the conversation of God and life.

Our Bozeman Community

Why did you choose Bozeman as the location for YTI?

Bozeman has become a gathering place for people who are fiercely independent free thinkers with a love for the outdoors. Bozeman and its surrounding terrain provide inspiration and connection through natural wonders and God’s handiwork, from the snowcapped peaks of the Bridger Mountain Range to the geological wonders in nearby Yellowstone National Park. We’re building our campus here because it’s a place that welcomes open discussions and self-reflection and inspires higher learning founded in a strong sense of community.

Is there time for YTI students get involved in the community?

We encourage our students to become part of the Bozeman community. Outside of your studies, there are endless hiking trails, fly-fishing destinations, community festivities, sporting events and volunteer opportunities.

Is it easy to get to Bozeman?

Yes. Bozeman is the fastest-growing micropolitan area in Montana and has nonstop airline service to 18 destinations in the United States, many of which are hubs to international locations. In addition, Bozeman is located on Interstate 90, making it easy for travelers to access the city by car or plane.

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