A Message from the Dean

Yale Divinity School exists to address the most pressing issues facing humanity. In the twenty-first century, we engage this challenge through scholarship of the highest caliber and through the cultivation of faith.

I believe it is this potent, unique combination—faith and intellect—that keeps our school powerfully relevant and ideally positioned to take on the challenges of the future. At YDS, we fully embrace the academic enterprise but recognize that intellect alone will not solve the world’s problems; it is our faith that motivates us, our faith that moves us to act.

We are an ecumenical Christian community that welcomes all, including those of different faiths and those who claim no particular faith. We are deeply committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion—a commitment manifest in the work we do to make YDS a welcoming community where all can experience a true sense of belonging. We are committed to justice. Our students and faculty regularly engage in conversations around issues such as immigration, climate change, women’s and LGBTQ rights, health care, and racial justice. These conversations compel many of our students to take action while they are at YDS and in their lives and careers after graduation.

From scholars and researchers to politicians, ministers, and religious luminaries, Yale Divinity School has produced some of the world’s most influential leaders. Since its inception in 1822 as a distinct school within Yale University, YDS has been a leader among theological institutions in putting forward presidents and deans of colleges, universities, and seminaries, as well as heads of denominations. Yale Divinity School faculty have been—and continue to be—among the most prominent religion scholars of their time. Our ministers in the pulpit have nurtured and expanded the religious imaginations of the faithful in virtually every corner of the globe.

Over the course of the 2022–23 academic year, we observed the Yale Divinity School Bicentennial, reflecting on our past and imagining our future. As much as I celebrate all that YDS has accomplished over its 200 years, I am most excited about what lies before us as we enter our third century. The first two centuries are but a prelude to the third.

Gregory E. Sterling
The Reverend Henry L. Slack Dean, Yale Divinity School
Lillian Claus Professor of New Testament