Vancouver School of Theology

Forming thoughtful, engaged and generous Christian leaders for the church in the 21st century


Indigenous Studies Program Summer School

Indigenous Studies Program Summer School

Our Indigenous Studies Program Summer School (ISP) is offered annually during two weeks in July. This is an opportunity for students who are often isolated from one another to gather, learn and worship together. It is also an opportunity for intensive course work for students in the Indigenous Studies Program M.Div by Extension. The Summer School serves people from a wide variety of educational backgrounds, with an international and largely Indigenous faculty.

Indigenous Studies Program Summer School is holistic and interdisciplinary. Courses examine sacred scripture, theology and philosophy through the lens of indigenous thought. Courses achieve this by examining social data, literary-oral tradition, the artistic cultural aspects of Indigenous spirituality.

Our array of courses offers a wide range of topics for a critical mind and a curious spirit. Be ready to embark on a journey of learning, healing and growth!

(Formerly NMC Summer School)


2019 ISP Summer School Program

Week 1: July 1st – 5th, 2019
Week 2: July 8th – 12th, 2019


Mandatory for all non-indigenous students – Indigenous students are welcome.
Week 1: July 1st, 2019 at 6PM
Week 2: July 8th, 2019 at 6PM


Courses and Outlines

M.Div Course Lecture: 9am – 12pm (open to all)
M.Div Course Tutorial: 2pm – 5pm (mandatory for M.Div students)
Con.Ed Course Lecture: 2pm – 5pm  (open to all)

Students taking M.Div lectures only, may obtain Con.Ed credit by selecting the “Con.Ed” option for their preferred course when completing the registration process.

Summer 2019

ispM. Div.  ISP-THX1/550 – 21st Century Theology: Modern, Postmodern and Indigenous

ISP-THX1/550 – 21st Century Theology: Modern, Postmodern and Indigenous


July 1st-5th 9am-12pm (all) & 2pm-5pm (M.Div only) This course introduces the student to the major theologians and theological movements of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.  It will include especially the perspective of liberation theologies, including feminist, postmodern, and indigenous, including emerging Pacific/Oceania theologies. Rev. Dr. Randall Furushima, President Emeritus and theology faculty of Pacific . . .

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ispM. Div.  ISP-EDX1/500 – Indigenous Education and Leadership

ISP-EDX1/500 – Indigenous Education and Leadership


July 1st-5th 9am-12pm (all) & 2pm-5pm (M.Div only) This course will introduce students to historical and Indigenous perceptions of leadership and education, the effects of colonization and current movements and decolonizing initiatives that promote reconciliation. Dr. Jaqueline Ottman, Anishinaabe (Saulteaux) member of Saskatchewan’s fishing Lake First Nation, serves as the first vice-provost of Indigenous engagement . . .

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ispCont. Ed.  ISP-SPX101 – Understanding Northwest Culture, Arts and Healing Tools

ISP-SPX101 – Understanding Northwest Culture, Arts and Healing Tools


July 1st-5th 2pm-5pm This course will explore the cultural understandings of  the Pacific Northwest First Nations People. Students will learn about regalia history, traditional plants, how to gather cedar and spruce root, and first nations food as a valuable aspect of spiritual awareness and healing. Sessions will also cover medicine wheel teachings, genograms (family mappings . . .

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ispM. Div.  ISP-NTX1/501 – Pauline Texts and Teachings

ISP-NTX1/501 – Pauline Texts and Teachings


July 8th-12th 9am-12pm (all) & 2pm-5pm (M.Div only) This course will examine both disputed and undisputed Pauline texts, and place them into conversation with their sociopolitical contexts at the time, and in context of Native/First Nations communities today. We will examine various theological themes and their implications for Native/First Nations ministries. We will pay special . . .

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ispM. Div.  THX1/503 – The Doctrine of Discovery

THX1/503 – The Doctrine of Discovery


July 8th-12th 9am-12pm (all) & 2pm-5pm (M.Div only) This course is an exploration of the religious and secular manifestations of a doctrine known as the Doctrine of Discovery, beginning with papal bulls and coming to the 21st century.  Students will explore the theological underpinnings of the doctrine, and follow the doctrine as Christianity made its . . .

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ispCont. Ed.  ISP- INTX102 – Woven Together: Intercultural Communication and Cultural Humility for Our Intersecting World

ISP- INTX102 – Woven Together: Intercultural Communication and Cultural Humility for Our Intersecting World


July 8th-12th 2pm-5pm Ever since the dawn of time people have traveled creating cultural intersections that are new and unique.  Some of these intercultural experiences have been beautiful and life giving, while others have been fraught with abuse and exploitation.  This course will explore some of those interactions and provide learners with skills for intercultural . . .

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Register Now


Courses can be taken for M.Div credit (3), ConEd. credit –  or Certificate credit – (1.5), and Audit.

Daily attendance and a final project are the requirements for M.Div credit. In order to receive ISP credit, students must attend 15 hours of class, and submit daily journals. Audit students should attend a minimum of 60% of lecture hours.

Indigenous Studies Program Summer School courses may be taken for transfer credit.  Please contact the Indigenous Studies Program office ( to inquire about transferable degree credit.

Please note that you can use your ISP Credits towards our new Indigenous Studies Program Certificate.

ISP Certificate Information


A $35 (Cdn) non-refundable fee is due with your registration. Lunch is charged at $80.00 per person, per week, and will be added to your registration and tuition fees.


Audit Course: $255.00
ISP/Con.Ed. Course: $331.00
M.Div Course: $843.00 ($281.00/credit x 3 credits/course)



  • One week REFUNDABLE deposit ($100.00)
  • Two week REFUNDABLE deposit ($200.00)

Please note the deposit is refunded when the student picks up the room; however, the deposit will be lost if request for accommodation is cancelled.

The ISP office has put a limited amount of rooms on hold for students to book; phone us at (604) 822-9480 for the group booking code, and make your reservation at your earliest convenience. You will also receive the booking code via e-mail when noting “YES” for accommodation when registering online.

Be reminded that space is limited on campus; therefore, you are highly encouraged to make arrangements by early Spring.

Other options:

For those interested in making reservations at the aforementioned locations, please contact the corresponding office through the information provided above and place your reservations. We encourage you to make reservations as soon as possible due limited space on campus during summer.


The lunch plan is included in your registration package, Monday to Friday, at a cost of $80.00 per person, per week. Our ability to respond to specially dietary needs is limited. Due to space limitation, ISP won’t offer breakfast this year. Students may purchase breakfast tickets at Great Dane or Carey Centre. For those reserving accommodation with the ISP booking code, breakfast is included with your reservations.


To apply, please fill out the following form and send it to

Application Form


In the event of low registrations, some courses may be cancelled.  Information on course cancellation will be available on our website in early June.

ISP – Certificate in Theological Studies

The ISP Certificate is a non-degree program for students who are interested in deepening their understanding about how their Indigenous context impacts Christian faith and theological thought. As academic credit is not offered, an undergraduate degree is not required for enrollment. The Certificate is granted at VST to students who successfully complete 12 units of study in Continuing Education (ConEd) and ISP-M.Div courses during summer school or by extension.

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Application Form


ISP Master of Divinity by Extension

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Indigenous + Inter-Religious Studies

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Continuing Ed

ISP Summer School

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