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Thrive: A Ministry Wives Certificate Program

Mission Statement

Thrive: A Ministry Wives Certificate prepares ministry wives for gospel ministry in their families, churches and communities.

Description of Program

Thrive classes will merge biblical instruction and practical application in an academic, discipleship setting with faculty wives and fellow students. Thrive students will learn how to walk with God, proclaim His truth, and fulfill His mission wherever God will call them to serve. It is our desire that our ministry wives will not only survive in ministry, but that they will Thrive.

Certificate Requirements

This certificate is offered as an academic program through Leavell College. To complete Thrive: A Ministry Wives Certificate, each student must complete the 8 required courses, each of which is worth one credit hour. Since these are offered every 8-weeks, on a rotating schedule, a student will be able to complete two courses per semester and the entire 8 credit hour certificate in 2 years. Once a student has completed all 8 courses, she is eligible to graduate during the December or May graduation ceremony and will receive her certificate.

Types of Courses

Thrive classes will be offered every eight weeks during the semester in two distinct formats:

  1. On-campus classes: These classes are offered on Tuesday nights from 6:30-8:30 pm on the New Orleans campus. Childcare is provided for children 6 weeks - 8 years old in the Early Learning Center on campus.

  2. Online classes: These classes will run simultaneously with the on-campus classes, but are offered in a NOLA2U Flex/online format for (a) wives already serving in ministries not local to the New Orleans area and/or married to online students, (b) student wives in our extension centers, or (c) on-campus students who are unable to attend on Tuesday nights due to work, church, or family conflicts.


Thrive classes are offered through Leavell College for academic credit and can be transferred as electives into other degree programs. Therefore, each ministry wife student must enroll by (1) filling out a Thrive application, (2) submitting a copy of her high school diploma or an official copy of college transcript, (3) submitting a background check, and (4) meeting Louisiana immunization requirements (for on-campus students only).

Course Schedule




Term 2

Term 1

Term 2

Year 1





Year 2





As Thrive: A Ministry Wives’ Certificate Program grows, we hope to be able to offer a minimum of two classes per night, to accommodate both new and returning students in appropriate sized classes. (Only one of the classes per term will be offered in the NOLA2U format, unless our online population exceeds the class limit.) To accommodate more students as the program grows, class A* will be offered during Term 1 of both fall and spring semesters. In addition, A & E will be offered simultaneously during the Fall of Year 1 and Year 2, B & F will be offered simultaneously in the Fall of Year 1 and Year 2, etc.

In addition, all classes will follow the same nightly schedule, with a designated fellowship time for all the ladies from the different classes to mingle and visit during the bathroom break:

  • 6:30 pm- Classes begin

  • 7:20-7:40- Bathroom and coffee break

  • 8:30- Classes dismiss

Thrive Course Descriptions

Essentials for Ministry Wives* LCMW 1101 - In this course, students will cover foundational topics to prepare and equip for ministry. Special attention will be given to calling, spiritual giftings, spiritual disciplines, soul care, and the legacy of a godly wife. It is the first course in the certificate and is highly recommended for all student spouses, whether or not they complete the remaining courses in the certificate program.

Healthy Habits for Ministry Families & Marriages LCMW 1102- In this course, students will learn biblical principles for healthy marriages and families, such as the importance of communication, the value of budgeting and stewardship of your resources, the necessity of balancing expectations of time, and the need to find rest while expressing godly hospitality in your homes, churches and communities.

How to Study and Teach the Bible LCMW 1103 - In this course, students will learn basic methods for studying Scripture as well as practical approaches for teaching the Bible. They will also understand the importance of effective communication through both observation and application.

Understanding the Grand Narrative of Scripture LCMW 1104 - In this broad survey of the Old and New Testaments, students will be introduced to the content and context of the Bible. Biblical theology themes as well as the grand storyline of Scripture will be discussed as well.

Introduction to Soul Care LCMW 1105 - In this course, ministry wives will gain a basic overview and foundation for Christian counseling. Special emphasis will be placed on how ministry wives can counsel women, including such topics as fear, conflict, family/marriage, anxiety, depression, grief, and loss.

Foundational Principles for Interpersonal Relationships LCMW 1106 - In this course, students will explore foundational principles in various interpersonal relationships. Topics covered in the class will include making and keeping friends in ministry, establishing the need for personal discipleship, learning skills to fight loneliness/isolation, as well as handling church conflict and overall involvement in SBC polity.

Basic Christian Doctrine and Worldview LCMW 1107 - In this course, students will survey basic Christian doctrines, biblical womanhood, and evangelistic worldview, while looking closely at the evangelical doctrines outlined in the Baptist Faith & Message 2000.

Evangelism and Disciple-making for Ministry Wives LCMW 1108 - In this course, students will learn basic evangelism and disciple-making strategies, including relational evangelism, mission planning, and the involvement of a ministry wife in church, community and mercy ministries.

Thrive+ Course Descriptions

Old Testament Survey LCMW 1109 - In this course, students will survey the books of the Old Testament, including their author, genre, main theme, geographical information, historical context, and pertinent theological content.

New Testament Survey LCMW 1110 - In this course, students will survey the books of the New Testament, including their author, genre, main theme, geographical information, historical context, and pertinent theological content.

Biblical Theology of Womanhood LCMW 1111 - In this course, students will gain an amplified and comprehensive knowledge of biblical womanhood from Genesis to Revelation. Biblical principles found in Scripture will be applied to life relationships in the home, church, and world.

Christian Ministry and Missions LCMW 1112 - In this course, students are introduced to the biblical and theological foundations of Christian Missions, with a specific focus on the Great Commission. Students will be encouraged to be involved in Christian ministries and missions both locally, nationally, and internationally.

To serve with the IMB, Missionary Apprentice spouses must also have at least 12 hours formal biblical/theological education. Those hours may come through undergraduate, graduate, or Seminary Wives programs. Those hours must include: Old Testament (3 hrs), New Testament (3 hrs), Systematic Theology (3 hrs), and a ministry-related elective (3 hrs). 

Course Requirements

Each Thrive course will have the same requirements, so that there is consistency in structure throughout the certificate. Each course will have 1-2 textbooks and the students will be required to attend and participate in class, write a 1-page book summary, and write a 3-5 page reflection paper.

Final grades will be calculated using this breakdown:

  • 30% attendance and participation

  • 30% book summary

  • 40% reflection paper

The same grading rubric will be used in each class for the book summary. The grade for the book summary will be comprised of the following components, with points being deducted for issues with grammar, formatting, incomplete work, or tardiness:

  • 25% completion of reading

  • 25% summary of book

  • 25% weaknesses of book

  • 25% strengths of book

The same grading rubric will be used in every class for the reflection paper. The grade for the reflection paper will be comprised of the following components, with points being deducted for issues with grammar, formatting, incomplete work, or tardiness:

  • 33% summary of topics covered in class

  • 33% personal reflection of class

  • 33% takeaways from the class including 3-5 practical ways it will be applied

Tuition & Fees

aPplication Fee

On Campus Classes

Childcare Fee


Wife of Current Student

No charge*



$100*** Per Course

Wife of Non-Current Student

$35 (one time fee)

$200** per course

We are unable to offer childcare for non-current students.


per course

* These courses are provided free of charge for our residential students, because of two very generous endowments honoring Ann Allen & Mary French. It is their desire that wives be trained for ministry alongside their student-husbands with little to no cost.

** This course fee is reduced for members of an SBC church. (The Southern Baptist Cooperative Program offsets the cost of tuition for members of an SBC church.) If the student is a member of a non-SBC church, the fee is $300 per on-campus/$385 per online class.

*** This course fee includes an $85 technology fee for the online class.