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Interfaith Leadership

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quran, old testament, bible

M.A. and Graduate Certificates 

The online Interfaith Leadership program gives students the academic, practical, and professional skills they need to be effective and educated leaders in interfaith organizations, religious settings, community relations organizations, and nonprofits.  

Students choose from a variety of online courses that emphasize leadership and organizational skills, deepen their understanding of the practices and beliefs of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, and highlight how the three Abrahamic faiths share the same concerns for social justice and equity in our world. 

This program is designed for students who are committed to interfaith dialogue and understanding and who wish to work toward ending the religious hatred and violence that plague our world. 

a stamp depicting 3 religious figures with hands locked

Belgium stamp celebrating interfaith understanding, stating in French: “All are equal, all are different”

"Love your neighbor as yourself." 
— Leviticus 19:18 and Matthew 19:20
 
 "Do what is good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, those in need, neighbors who are near, neighbors who are strangers, the companion by your side, and the wayfarer."
— Qur'an 4:36

NBC 10 interview Skorka and Sandberg

Gratz's Dr. Ruth Sandberg was featured on NBC10 with Rabbi Abraham Skorka to discuss interfaith answers in the face of rising hate crimes. Watch the segment here.


Academics

Master of Arts 

The M.A. in Interfaith Leadership consists of 10 courses plus Field Work and a Capstone. Students take courses in Organizational Leadership, Interfaith Understanding, and Religious Studies. Field Work is done in a local interfaith organization or group and consists of 35 hours of observation or participation, as well as journaling about the experience. The Capstone project gives students the opportunity to discuss how their coursework has enhanced their professional skills as well as their personal development. It also includes creating a professional statement and a portfolio to be utilized in the process of obtaining a position in an interfaith organization. 

Graduate Certificate in Interfaith Leadership 

Students who would like to contribute to greater interfaith understanding, but who do not have any academic background in the subject, are welcome to take the Graduate Certificate in Interfaith Leadership as a first step toward that goal. The courses in the Certificate can count toward the M.A. in Interfaith Leadership.

Graduate Certificate in Jewish-Christian Studies

The graduate Certificate in Jewish-Christian Studies is a first credential that offers a comparative approach to Judaism’s relationship with Christianity from ancient times to today. The Certificate also gives students a foundation for further work in Jewish-Christian relations and interfaith dialogue and understanding. This certificate is offered jointly with St. Joseph’s College of Maine.

Graduate Certificate in Chaplaincy

Gratz can now offer Interfaith students an additional Certificate in Chaplaincy that can help them in the process of becoming certified Chaplains. We have an agreement with Hartford Seminary in Connecticut for Gratz students to take four Chaplaincy courses, which can be transferred to Gratz as a Certificate.

Students may also take Chaplaincy courses as part of the MA in Interfaith Leadership.

Graduate Certificate in Foundations of Interfaith Relations

Students who wish to have another option for a Certificate can take four courses that focus on ways in which the three Abrahamic faiths share commonalities in theology, liturgy, lifecycle and holidays.

View Course Offerings Program Paths

Meet the Program Director

Dr. Ruth Sandberg has devoted her academic career to fostering better relations between people of differing faiths and backgrounds and working toward a more equitable and just world. 


Our Faculty

The Faculty for the Interfaith Leadership program is diverse and from a wide variety of fields, including Leadership, Genocide Prevention, Education, Jewish Studies, and Comparative Religion. They share a common goal of seeing education as the most important way to combat religious misunderstanding and ignorance.