With the relaxing of COVID-19 restrictions, SBC is set for return-to-campus teaching next semester. However, whilst most students will have embarked on their mid-semester break, a few find themselves at the college for a series of intensives. Undertaking the Graduate Certificate in Ministry (Supervision stream) are the committed students of MIN525 – Professional Supervision in Ministry. Running from Monday 22/6 – Thursday 24/6 and again on Monday 6/7 – Thursday 9/7, these intensives are being taught by the Rev’d Peter Williams and focus on both the history and praxis of professional supervision.
When asked to comment on supervision, Peter explained, that “the focus of supervision is on work, so in this case the practice of ministry – how you exercise supervision and how you feel about what you’re doing. What’s your motivation like? High or low? How is this practice affecting those you work and minister with and to? The role of a supervisor is not of a teacher but that of a facilitator, to help the supervisee learn and realise for themselves how they might change their practice. As a supervisor I am there to walk beside the supervisee, walking beside them, not judging and criticising them; I’m there to support them.”
The intensive sessions themselves take a structure designed to help cement supervision skills. In the morning, lecture content is presented in a standard lecture fashion. In the afternoon, however, it transforms into something resembling a group supervision session. Each participant comes in with material from their supervisory experience to present to the rest of the class. This allows the group to reflect with them and help provide many different perspectives on the issue.
It seems that the students have risen to the task. Commenting on the present cohort taking the course, Peter noted that, “The student group is terrific. Two of the essays require the students to reflect on an actual supervision session and to provide a video recording of this session. This takes a lot of courage and raises a lot of supervisory issues and tests a lot of supervisory skills. And then to come to the intensive and be asked again in front of their peers as well as their tutor to present something for supervision, it just shows great courage and bravery, and they’ve all learnt from it. They’ve found it to be really helpful because it ties the theory into the practice.”
If you’d like to find out more about our Graduate Certificate in Ministry or any of our other courses and subjects, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.