One-Year Seminary

One-Year Seminary

A Unique Opportunity

"What would it look like if you set aside a season of your life to study God's Word and be challenged to apply it to your life?" This is the question we have been asking students to consider since our one-year seminary program began.

The WEST Institute, an extension site of Shepherds Theological Seminary, gives Christians this unique opportunity. Present or future missionaries, pastors, teachers, accountants, engineers, nurses, mothers, fathers, and others are invited to join our one-year seminary, and dedicate a season to learning and living out the Bible.

Students at The WEST Institute are immersed in sound Biblical teaching, are challenged through intentional discipleship and community. They are also given the amazing opportunity to study in Jordan and Israel, as well as experience several different outdoor adventures. Our program is built on the belief that living out the Word of God through the power of the Spirit changes the lives of students and those they will minister to for the rest of their lives.

The Partnership

The WEST Institute exists as a partnership between Laramie Valley Chapel and Shepherds Theological Seminary. Shepherds Theological Seminary is responsible for all academic instruction, and Laramie Valley Chapel provides a local church setting for intrusive discipleship and mentoring.

What Our Students Are Saying…

"It’s made me more aware of my heart, looking to evaluate my motivations and what they’re saying about God in the moment rather than realizing them later when it’s too late."

— 2018 Graduate

"For the first time in my 15 years as a Christian I finally feel like I am walking with Christ on a daily basis."

— 2016 Graduate

"For me, this experience has dramatically opened my eyes to a huge hole that I didn't know existed. My walk with Christ has been deepened beyond all expectations."

— 2016 Graduate

"Classes changed the way I view the Bible. Israel changed the way I read the Bible. The Bible Institute gave me a broad overview to better understand the Bible. The Heart Study changed my relationship with Christ as I saw my sin for what it really was."

— 2016 Graduate

Program Overview

The mission of The WEST Institute is to see the lives of men and women changed through the study and personal application of God's Word.

We are committed to helping students grow in their knowledge of Scripture and challenging them to live their lives as a reflection of God's Word. The Bible forms the basis of our education and students are challenged to always keep the Word of God as the lens through which they view the world.

Our unique format makes seminary an option for all Christians, not just those pursuing vocational ministry. The program is completed in just twelve months. Most Christians never consider seminary because of the 2-5 years of study required. Our one-year format not only accelerates the schooling process for future full-time ministers, it also makes seminary an accessible option for men and women headed into every walk of life.

WEST Highlights

A Full experience

The opportunity to be trained in God's Word at a reduced cost without sacrificing the quality of education.


The West Mission

Our mission is to see lives changed through the study and personal application of God's Word.

Degree Details

This degree is designed for students looking for an entry level masters degree that provides both a strong foundation in the Bible and theology, but also prepares them to serve more effectively where ever God has called them.

The MTS degree also appeals to students who may consider more advanced degree work and it counts towards 45% of the Master of Divinity degree at Shepherds Theological Seminary should a student decide to continue their studies. Click HERE to learn more about the MTS degree.

The Master of Theological Studies (MTS) is a 42 hour accredited degree which combines the highest quality of academic studies from the resident faculty of Shepherds with the personal guidance and discipleship of the staff in Laramie. The MTS has two purposes: (1) For the lay minister, to gain an advanced understanding of the Bible and theology in order to be qualified and able to serve the Lord more effectively in one's local church or related ministries; (2) For those anticipating vocational ministry, to prepare for further graduate studies, especially the Master of Divinity Program.


Authentic Community and Discipleship

We are committed to not only helping students grow in their knowledge of Scripture, but also to challenging them to live their lives as a reflection of the Word of God.

Our goal is to provide a comprehensive program that is focused on the mind and heart of each student and spouse. Our program is uniquely able to accomplish this because it exists as a ministry partnership of Laramie Valley Chapel and Shepherds Theological Seminary. We exist to train men and women with sound biblical teaching in the context of intentional life-on-life community.

Our program is built on the principle of discipleship. Students experience authentic community and are challenged to apply Scripture to their lives. This community exists among students, WEST staff, and Pastors and members of Laramie Valley Chapel. To learn more about our discipleship efforts please see the pages on the Heart Study and Life-on-Life.