About Us

Chairman of the Board of Trustees

Bishop Michael L. Mitchell
Greetings on behalf of the Board of Trustees and welcome to the Jackson Theological Seminary Family!

This is an exciting time for the faculty, staff and especially the students of Jackson. We are entering a new era of educational and academic excellence that will prepare our students to render a higher quality of service to the church and the community. Jackson Theological Seminary is committed to values that promote the welfare and positive transformation of individuals, communities and societies. The faculty, administration and staff are committed to producing effective Christian leaders in pastoral and ministerial service.
The Jackson faculty excels in teaching
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Reverend Cecil Williams
In every generation, inspired people have come forth to meet the challenges of their day. We now face an era that is calling for a new level of Spirit-filled, scholarly leaders. The great Rev. Dr. Benjamin Mays once said that “if religion is to be respectable, challenging and increasingly helpful...we have no other choice than to concern ourselves more in the future with theological education among (our people) than we have in the past.” That future calls to us today, and Jackson Theological Seminary is ready to answer. With your committed support, I believe we can help develop courageous change-agents for the pulpit and the public square, God being our helper. With a robust student body, thoughtful academic rigor, engaging theological scholarship, and an intentional strategy to build the beloved community, we will make a difference in the lives of people and institutions in local and global theatres
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Previous Presidents

Rev. T. W. Watkins
Rev. Rufus King Young
Rev. Charles N. Irving
Rev. Dr. Colin McRae Lambert
Rev. James R. Hooper
Rev. Clarence Guy
Rev. Clarence B. Boyd
Rev. Cecil L. Williams Jr.

Educational Partnerships with Jackson Theological Seminary

Jackson Theological Seminary is a member of the Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS)

PO Box 328, Forest, VA 24551; Telephone: 434-525-9539; e-mail: info@tracs.org, having been awarded Candidacy Status as a Category 1 institution by TRACS’ Accreditation Commission on October 27, 2020 ; this status is effective for a period of five years. TRACS is recognized by the United States Department of Education (USDE), the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) and the International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education. (INCAAHE).
Educational Partnerships with Jackson Theological Seminary
Jackson Theological Seminary has partnerships with the following institutions: 

Shorter College, North Little Rock, AR
Payne Theological Seminary, Wilberforce, OH
Beulah Heights University, Atlanta, GA

Student Achievement

Assessment of Student Academic Achievement
The Board of Trustees, faculty and staff affirm that student learning is at the core of our purpose as a seminary. The ability to measure learning accomplishes two purposes: it allows us to demonstrate our accountability to our various publics but, more importantly, it provides us with the capacity to impact and improve the degree of learning that occurs in our Seminary.

The Seminary has developed a Plan to Assess Student Academic Achievement, in accordance with the requirements of The Association of Theological Schools. The plan ensures the Seminary has specific learning outcomes for each of its degree programs and validates that students earning degrees have achieved those outcomes. Validity measures include instructor assessment, certification trainings, and evaluations by external professionals. The results of the assessment efforts are used to improve instruction as necessary to guarantee that our students can succeed in ministry endeavors.

Institutional Objectives

  1. The Seminary shall prepare students for careers and service in Christian ministry for the local church and global Christian ministry.

  2. The Seminary shall promote and prepare academic and theological excellence and scholarship through holistic, inclusive, and involved teaching and training of students for the Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies and the Master of Divinity degree programs. Each program will sponsor a teaching, training, and learning environment, where all are encouraged to participate, grow and develop in Christian faith and service.

  3. The Seminary shall educate, encourage, and engage students from varied spiritual, ethnic, cultural, male/female, and students with physical handicaps to encourage diversity and inclusiveness at the Seminary.

  4. The Seminary staff, faculty, and Board of Trustees shall encourage solicitation of grants, aid, federal funding, research procedures, and practices to establish and enhance funding and scholarship for deserving students.

  5. The Seminary shall promote and encourage the professional development of its faculty and staff to ensure relevant, realistic, and reliable instruction and training for all students.

Vision statement

A Global Academy, providing biblical foundations for Christian ministries that serve, transforms and liberates communities.

Mission statement

Jackson Theological Seminary is an educational community preparing people for service to the local church and the broader community through transformative teaching and training. The faculty, administration and staff are committed to preparing students for effective Christian leadership in pastoral and ministerial service.

Family educational rights and privacy (FERPA)

Notice is hereby given that Jackson Theological Seminary has adopted institutional procedures in compliance with the Family Educational Right and Privacy Act of 1974, assuring the right of a student to view his or her educational records upon request.


Jackson Theological Seminary as a part of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, believes and affirm that the Bible is the Word of God and that the” Holy Scriptures" contains all things necessary to salvation. The Bible is primary, authoritative, and informative in all matters of faith and practice. There is nothing like the written Word of God for showing the way to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. Every part of Scripture is God breathed, showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, and training us to live the way God intended. In the name of the Holy Scriptures, we do understand those canonical books of the Old and New Testament, of whose authority was never any doubt in the Church. We do believe and affirm the Apostle’s Creed


The seminary students and faculty seek to experience and examine theological training and thought formation centered on the exquisite grace of God, the example of Jesus Christ, and the excellent power of the Holy Spirit. Our philosophy of education emphasizes teaching and learning as an expression of social justice and liberation theology, tempered with service to community, and faith inspired by biblical, scriptural authority and historical Christian beliefs.


The ethical values and standards of Jackson Theological Seminary seek to exemplify the liberating ministry, the services of sacrifice, and the standards of justice and love of Jesus Christ in ministerial and pastoral Christian service. The seminary is committed to representing the moral, ethical traditions and standards espoused by the Holy Bible (Old and New Testaments) and the African Methodist Episcopal Church. Enrollment in Jackson Theological Seminary constitutes a recognition and reverence for these ethical values and standards by all students.


Biblical/Scriptural Authority: The extent to which the commandments and doctrines within the Old and New Testament scriptures are authoritative for human belief, conduct and destiny. Historical Faith: Historical belief, trust, and loyalty of Christian Faith as described in the Old and New Testaments and through the Trinity - God the Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. Academic Rigor: Teach conceptual understanding, procedural skill, fluency, and application. Social Justice: Teach concepts of fair and just relations between the individual and society. This is measured by the explicit and tacit terms for the distribution of wealth, opportunities for personal activity, and social privileges. Micah 6:8 what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? Liberation: The process to fight the ills of sin and exploitation through the relationship between Christian theology and political activism, economic justice, poverty, and human rights. Service Orientation: The call to serve community, however, especially the least, the week, poor and the needy. Mark 10:43 but whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all. 45 For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.