FAQs about the Canadian Certificate Program

How do I get a copy of my student transcript?

Please contact Leigh Philley in the CMD office, (253) 853-5422 or leigh@cmdnet.org. We will need your name (including maiden name, if applicable) and the approximate dates and the site(s) at which you attended courses. Please allow up to three weeks for your request to be processed.

I lost my Certificate. How can I get a replacement?

Please contact Leigh Philley in the CMD office, (253) 853-5422 or leigh@cmdnet.org. We will need the approximate date when you received the Certificate. Please allow three weeks for your request to be processed.

When are Certificate projects due?

All assignments for all eight courses must be submitted to CMD according to the following schedule:

  • Academic year sites (courses held from mid-August to early June): September 15 following completion of the last of the eight courses in the Certificate Program.
  • Summer sites (courses held in June, July, and August): December 15 following completion of the last of the eight courses in the Certificate Program.
  • Calendar year sites (courses held from January-December in one year): March 15 following completion of the last of the eight courses in the Certificate Program.

For some participants this will be at the end of the two years of courses; for others it may take more than two years to complete the program. In both cases the assignments for all eight courses are due by the dates indicated above following completion of the eighth course.

Is it possible to get an extension on my Certificate project?

Assignments are expected to be turned in on time. However, CMD recognizes that there may be an extenuating circumstance for which an extension is justified. In that case, the student must contact Tom East at tomeast@cmdnet.org before the deadline to request an extension.

How do I submit my project?

Submit your project, Project Submission Form, and graduation fee to:

Center for Ministry Development
Attention: Certificate Review Process
5713 Wollochet Drive NW, Suite A
Gig Harbor WA 98335

Please keep a complete copy of your project. Send your project using one of the following methods: UPS, FedEx, or Priority Mail. It is not necessary to send projects using an “overnight” service. Keep a copy of the tracking number. CMD is not responsible for projects lost when shipped without a tracking number or when shipped to an incorrect address.

Can I get college or university credit for the Certificate Program? / How would I receive graduate or undergraduate credit for the courses?

Several colleges and universities offer graduate credit for participation in the Certificate Program. One credit/unit is awarded for each course. In addition to local universities, three offer credit to any student in the Certificate Program: University of Dallas, Creighton University, and St. Meinrad School of Theology. Each college or university has its own deadlines for submission of course assignments. In addition, each college or university charges an additional fee to register for the course and receive credit. These fees are set by the college or university.

How do I register for a course?

Contact the site coordinator where you wish to take the courses. He/She will provide you with the specific information about costs, housing, location, etc. Each site sets its own fee for the courses. 

Toronto:  Fr. Santo Arrigo C.Ss.R. (Redemptorist Ignite Ministry) ignite@redemptorists.ca

Why are all the papers due at the same time?

Certificate students submit all assignments for each course, at the completion of their eight-weekend program. This provides time for students to demonstrate their ability to apply what they have learned from each of the eight courses, and to use their new skills, approaches, and strategies in their pastoral setting and document this learning by completing their assignments.

Exception: Students taking the courses for college credit may be required to submit their assignment in accord with the college/university.

What is the benefit of receiving a certificate of completion for the Canadian Certificate in Youth Ministry Studies Program? / Is this certificate recognized around Canada?

Since 1979, CMD has provided the Certificate Program throughout the United States, as well as being taught in many sites across Canada.  Several (Arch) Dioceses and Eparchies across Canada continue to utilize this training program for certification of youth ministers. The Canadian Certificate received at the successful completion of the program is recognized around the country by bishops, pastors, and other pastoral leaders as evidence of practical ministry formation in line with the document published by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, “You Give Them Something to Eat”, 2016.

What if I miss a course? Do I have to wait two years to get my certificate?

If you must miss a course, you are welcome to make it up at any of the other sites in either Canada or the United States. Just contact the site coordinator at the new site to register. You may also wait until your site offers the course again (in two years).

What if I have a wedding / confirmation / baptism / whatever? Can I miss a portion of a course and still get credit?

A Certificate student is expected to attend every session of the course. If a student is late or anticipates missing any portion of the course, it is the student’s responsibility to consult with the instructor regarding content that was covered. Each session of the course is approximately 90 to 120 minutes in length. If a student misses more than one session, he/she will be required to repeat the course in order to qualify for the Certificate.

Is it possible to start the program at a time other than with the first course?

While the majority of students begin the Certificate Program with the Year One courses, a student may enter the program at any time.  However, with the Blended Learning Program, information in the online courses is linked the subsequent gathered courses.  Students should consult with the Site Coordinator to discuss beginning the program out of sequence. 

Is it possible to make-up missed courses by going to a different site?

Yes; contact the site coordinator where you would like to take the course. To find the options available, click this link: http://www.cmdnet.org/youth-ministry/certificate-in-youth-ministry-studies-program/find-a-course/dates-sites-courses.

How much time can I take to complete all 8 courses?

Many students finish the Certificate Program in two years. However, it is not uncommon for students to take up to four years to attend all the courses and get their assignments written and submitted for review.

Who assesses the projects and how are they assessed?

Instructors from the Center’s staff, as well as long-time Certificate instructors, form the review team for Certificate projects. Each person’s project is evaluated against the assignment requirements. Reviewers look for a student’s application of learning to their ministry setting and how the readings and classroom activities influences a student’s thinking about youth ministry and young people.

What if my project isn’t approved?

If a reviewer believes a student has not met the requirements of a particular assignment, the project and evaluation form are sent to Tom East, Coordinator of Project Review Process, for a second review. If there is agreement on the original assessment of the project, the student will receive the project back along with detailed notes on what needs to be re-done and re-submitted in order to complete the requirements for the certificate. If the review coordinator believes the project has met the requirements, the certificate will be issued to the student.

Is the Certificate Program available online?

The Certificate Program is not entirely available online. CMD believes in using all available technology in providing leadership formation for ministry. The recently developed Blended Learning Program utilizes the traditional gathered learning environment using eight one-day classes, as opposed to eight two-day classes, as well as online courses that students take in either preparation or following the gathered classes.  The Canadian Certificate in Youth Ministry Studies Program will be following this Blended Learning Program which incorporates both gathered courses and the online courses.

What if the COVID-19 Pandemic prevents us from going to scheduled gathered weekend? 

In the event that the COVID-19 Pandemic restrictions prevent a scheduled course to take place on a weekend, provision will be made to offer this course through a digital platform that allows a live-streamed interactive learning opportunity.  As the ideal is to gather all the students together for the gathered courses, we recognize that provision needs to be made for the circumstances of our times.  The live-streamed course will take place over a few days as it will require about 7 hours of online participation.  Each Course Site will provide the schedule of the live-streamed course if the gathered course is not possible.  We appreciate the cooperation and understanding of the students and our faculty to make this alternate learning opportunity a fruitful and worthwhile experience.

I started the Certificate Program many years ago, but I did not complete the assignments. What options are open to me?

Depending on your particular situation, one or more of the following may apply to you:

  1. Students who attended, but did not complete assignments for, Certificate courses before the publication of Renewing the Vision in 1997, must re-take all incomplete courses and submit assignments for each course.
  2. Students who attended and completed assignments for one or more Certificate courses before the publication of Renewing the Vision in 1997, have completed the requirements for those courses. Such students need only take missing courses and submit assignments for them according to the established deadline (September 15 for academic year sites, December 15 for summer sites, or March 15 for calendar year sites).
  3. Students who completed requirements for three courses—Principles of Youth Ministry, Evangelization & Catechesis, and Prayer & Worship—prior to the publication of Renewing the Vision (1997) and who still need to take additional courses to receive the Certificate, are encouraged to repeat the above-named courses since they were revised completely in accord with the U.S. Bishops’ pastoral plan, as well as recent Church Documents and the Canadian Bishops’ documents.

Do courses ‘expire’ in the Certificate Program?

The Center for Ministry Development reserves the right to decide if the time lapse between a student attending Certificate courses and submitting a project for review necessitates repeating one or more courses. These decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis. Factors considered in such decisions include, but are not limited to, publication of major Church documents that require revision of a course’s content or revision of the entire Certificate curriculum.

The Center for Ministry Development is committed to assisting students in the successful completion of the program in order to receive the Certificate. Students with questions about their status in the Certificate Program may contact Leigh Philley at (253) 853-5422 or leigh@cmdnet.org.

Can a course in the Certificate Program be waived if I have attended something similar?

Students enrolled in the Certificate Program may request that a course be waived because another course that was previously attended provides equivalent content.

The alternative course must:

  • Cover the same topics
  • Require readings
  • Require projects
  • Must be facilitated by an instructor with a Master’s degree or higher education and a minimum of five years of experience in ministry.

Often the difficulty with course equivalence is the lack of specific content that gears the topics to ministry with adolescents. The course should be something that you have already attended. It is typical to have one course waived. Under extraordinary circumstances, it is possible to have two courses waived. No more than two courses can be waived from the program requirements.