Joni and Friends Honors First Master’s Graduates in Disability Studies

  • By: Joni and Friends
  • May 11, 2012
  • Christian Institute on Disability

CBU Graduates at GraduationDisability Studies Graduates with Dr. Jeff McNair

As Master’s Degree graduates at California Baptist University received their degrees this month, 12 of the graduates were honored by the Joni and Friends Christian Institute on Disability for completing the first-ever master’s level program in Disability Studies. Through a course done entirely online, master’s degrees have been awarded in disability ministry as well as disabilities studies from Bible-based curriculum for the first time. Although there are other certificate courses and programs in this field online, there is nothing like the academic rigor of a graduate degree in disability ministry. Discussing the same authors as in a secular program, a significant time is devoted to understanding disability/impairment from a Christian perspective. Jeff McNair, director of the CID’s Public Policy Center who oversees the M.A. in Disabilities Studies program at CBU said, “We are so proud of these 12 graduates and their commitment to disability ministry. While four of the students did an emphasis in ministry, eight did an emphasis in policy, and we are excited to see how both groups will be used to affect their churches and their culture.”

The CID now partners with 22 academic institutions in courses on the theology of suffering and disability ministry training, and has provided clarity on some of the most difficult social issues with statements, position papers and other resources. The partnership with CBU began in 2007 with this master’s level curriculum and will likely expand in the future to include undergraduate degrees.  Next year’s class size will be nearly double, with 23 students from all across the U.S. and Canada. “We look forward to continuing to grow this program as well as begin partnerships with new universities and expand more of our existing programs into undergraduate studies,” McNair concluded.


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Hi! First of All, Congratulations Graduates!!!! I am a person with a disability, and I will begin this course of study in September. PRAYERS APPRECIATED! lol!!! The Lord is so good!!!!
  • July 29, 2014
  • 9:03 a.m.
  • Elaine Bennett
How exciting! I wonder how many of the graduates, if any, have disabilities themselves... Not that you need a disability to have a successful ministry, I'm just curious...
  • July 30, 2012
  • 5:53 p.m.
  • Becky Ferrucci
Praise the Lord, Yo estoy muy agradecida con Dios por esta opcion de formacion en la temática de dis-Capacidad, Tengo interes en saber de la oportunidad para las universidades crisitianas de Guatemala, Actualmente estoy en una iglesia que abrira un curso con esta temática, y estamos gestionando la certificación del curso en alguna universidad, Podrian decirme si tienen proyeccion para Guatemala, ?
  • June 6, 2012
  • 1:19 p.m.
  • Telma regina Cajas
Congratulations Graduates! I am a disabled person who would like to thank you all very much for choosing this field of study. I am proud of you! I pray God's blessing upon each and everyone of you and say, God speed! Bud
  • June 3, 2012
  • 12:21 p.m.
  • Bud Busby
Congratulations and thank you for your passion to give my daughter and others with disability the opportunity to belong to the community church of their choice and to be welcomed as Christ expects (commands). We are all human beings made in His image! Beautiful!
  • May 12, 2012
  • 7:37 a.m.
  • Mary Ciura
Congratulations to all the students. You will make a difference among disability communities in Christs name!
  • May 12, 2012
  • 6:44 a.m.
  • Silvia verga
Congratulations to the graduates! I am so thrilled to know there are people teaching others how to deal with disabilities from a Christian perspective. Praise God! May He bless you in your work, and may you all be a blessing to those you work with!
  • May 11, 2012
  • 4:19 p.m.
  • Dorothy Plantz
Congratulations to all the graduates!!!! God is going to do amazing things with your lives and I praise Him for the impact you are going to have for His kingdom.
  • May 11, 2012
  • 1:18 p.m.
  • kimberly quinn
Fantastic positive gospel integration! Praising God!
  • May 11, 2012
  • 11:25 a.m.
  • Mark Mcclure