The American Association of Christian Colleges and Seminaries is a membership association that currently is made up of 14 colleges, universities and seminaries. As an association that serves to advance Christian-centered institutions, it is important that all schools with fundamentalist tradition become member schools in an effort to hold up a strong tradition and heritage. As a fairly new association that was incorporated in 2005, the AACCS is not as widely known as some of the other faith-based associations that exist today. If you are planning on pursuing a career in Christian education or you would like to learn more about how to qualify an institution, read on.
What is the AACCS’s Primary Mission?
The primary mission of the AACCS is to provide member institutions with a useful network where they will be equipped with opportunities for advancement and professional development. Not only does the association host different conferences, they also provide the institutions with unbiased support so that the school is able to assess and evaluate the academic performance of students and progress through programs. In addition to providing the school with this support to improve programs, they will also provide personal support to administrators and faculty of member schools so that they can identify issues that could be thwarting their development and address them.
Events that are Hosted by the AACCS
To give members the opportunity to network, the AACCS will host several annual events. One of the most popular events is the Annual Meeting that falls in February. The meeting serves as a gathering place for faculty and administrators to each address cooperative efforts and to work as a community to improve their programs and their Christian communities. There are also smaller focus groups, that do not include all member schools, throughout the year. They may focus on a specific interest area or on a specific student demographic. It is also common for all member schools to participate in the Bible Faculty Summit, which is not actually hosted by the association.
How Does a School Become a Member School?
In order to become a member school with the American Association of Christian Colleges and Seminaries the administrators must complete an application and submit it for review by the council. It is important that all member schools accept the doctrinal statement before they are associated or involved with the AACSS. Since the association believes that the principles of some associations contradict the statement and Scripture, any schools affiliated with the following may not be involved as a member school: the National Council of Churches, the ecumenical movement, the new evangelicalism movement, and the World Council of Churches.
Member School Profile: Maranatha Baptist Bible College
The purpose of the AACSS is to follow the Scripture as it is interpreted by historic and fundamentalist traditions. The reason why there are only 15 member schools is because many schools have developed programs that go against the belief in creation and the belief of incarnation. If a school stresses the necessity of the New Birth and stays with fundamentalist tradition, it is believed to be eligible for involvement with the AACSS. In some areas, new laws and provisions actually make it against the law to focus curriculum only on creation. This is why the number of member schools with the American Association of Christian Colleges and Seminaries is projected to drop in the coming years.