Residency Program - Level 2

You are training for ministry, a profession which calls for a wide variety of skills and knowledge. Being a pastor, a minister, a rabbi or priest means being with people in the whole gamut of human experiences and bringing spiritual or religious perspectives to life in those moments. Developing that ability requires pastoral experience, skilled supervision, and a process of working with and learning from other professionals. Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center offers you a richness and depth in all these areas.

September through August

The Resident Chaplain program is for pastors and other professionals in ministry who are interested in further training in pastoral care or a specialty in hospital chaplaincy. It requires at least one prior unit of CPE. Currently there are five full-time positions. The Residency program has a stipend and benefits package.

All housing arrangements must be made by the students. A portion of meals during on-call shifts are paid for by the hospital. Commuting students from beyond a 30 mile radius will be accepted in the program only after discussion of travel plans.

Admission Requirements

A completed application along with a $10 deposit. The form is available by contacting our Department at 717-531-8177 or online at the  Association for Clinical Pastoral Education  website.

  1. Applications are being taken anytime during the year, with interviews beginning in January.
  2. Admission interview by a CPE Supervisor or other qualified person.
  3. Applicants are expected to be involved in religious ministry or in seminary.
  4. Acceptance decisions will be made after completion of the admission process.
  5. Tuition is $285.00 per unit. There is a $50.00 non-refundable deposit which is due upon acceptance. This deposit will be deducted from the balance of your first unit. Payment is due by the first day of each unit. Our Finance Department will invoice you.

Send applications to:

Pastoral Services, H118
Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
P. O. Box 850
Hershey, PA 17033

*Accredited by the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, Inc. 1549 Clairmont Road - Suite 103, Decatur, GA 30033 Phone 404-320-1472 or email at

For more information about Clinical Pastoral Education, see the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education at the ACPE web site.

The residency consists of:

  • Three 13-week traditional units of CPE – 1 credit per unit
    • Unit 1 – September – November - Major themes of Unit 1: Orientation, Narrative Theology, Professional Chaplaincy, Use of Self, Death and Dying, Theology of Pastoral Care and paper
    • Unit 2 – January - March - Major themes of Unit 2: Spiritual Pathway Projects, Spirituality Research, Coping, Family Systems Theory, Theology of Suffering and paper, Multiculturalism, Student Consultations
    • Unit 3 – May-July - Major themes of Unit 3: Cultural Competency, Professional Chaplaincy Competencies, Motivation for Ministry and paper, Medical Ethics, Erikson’s Stages of Development, Presentation of Pathway Project
  • Three 4-week Professional Practicum Periods
    • December – Integration of learning from Unit 1; Development of clinical “parish”; Research and development of Spiritual Pathway Project, Draft written for presentation in January; Time Management Project; and 5 days required vacation for self care
    • April – Integration of learning from previous units; Continued development of clinical “parish”; Continued research and development of Spiritual Pathway Project – focus data collection and tool, project paper written for presentation in May; Time Management Project 2; 5 days required vacation for self care
    • August – Function as Professional Chaplain

Clinical visitation and trauma ministry; 4-12 hour on call and 2-8 hour on call shifts per month; 5 Verbatim presentations using differing formats, i.e., Theological, Systems, Cultural; One 3-5 page paper each unit; Readings as assigned; Individual Supervision  with written reflection in first and second units to every other week in third unit; supervisor/student reserves the right to call for a session as she sees fit; 2 1-1/2 hour Interpersonal Group sessions per week; Attendance at Daily Morning Report, and interdisciplinary opportunities, i.e., Schwartz Rounds, Medical Residents/Chaplain Residents Ethics Discussions, unit specific rounds as available; Preparation of devotionals and services as assigned including preparation of two Services of Remembrance.

  • Stipened position
  • Full health benefits package with the exception of retirement benefits
  • Six paid holidays, residents negotiate on call coverage of all holidays