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What to Expect in CPE

Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center is renowned for its innovative and progressive medicine. That same sense of excellence is found in the Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) Program. CPE students are exposed to invaluable opportunities at the Medical Center. Students can expect to:

  • Participate in a well-rounded curriculum developed to meet the standards of ACPE, Inc. and the particular learning interests of a peer group;
  • Understand the intersection of spirituality and medicine;
  • Develop leadership skills;
  • Learn about self as a primary tool for building ministry relationship;
  • Be challenged to examine their ministry approaches, their interpersonal postures, and personal and theological meaning making while providing spiritual service;
  • Attend any number of lectures from world leading educators in their chosen fields;
  • Have access to one of the largest medical libraries in the world, and may elect to observe a surgery or autopsy, as part of their learning experience;
  • Provide spiritual care to patients, families and loved ones on specific medical units including intensive care units;
  • Work alongside staff chaplains and other interdisciplinary team members as part of the medical team focused on patient centered care; and
  • Respond to emergent situations while on-call.

Each CPE Program includes the fundamental elements of visiting patients, families and hospital staff; writing and presenting those encounters within a peer group; rotating on the on-call roster; participating in didactic seminars and workshops; actively joining the small group process; pursuing questions and concerns in clinical supervision; and reading and researching books and topics centered upon contemporary pastoral care and practice.

Part-time (intern) students can expect to participate in:

  • Eight hours of scheduled clinical time (in four-hour time blocks), providing spiritual care for patients in the hospital who request visits and responding to emergencies each week;
  • Approximately three to four additional hours written work each week;
  • Weekly group sessions, generally for five hours;
  • Twelve-hour, on-site, on-call shifts on weekends (Friday through Sunday); and
  • One supervisory session every two weeks.

Full-time students can expect to participate in:

  • 40+ hour weeks, providing spiritual care for patients on assigned clinical areas and responding to emergent needs throughout the hospital.
  • Approximately four to five additional hours written work each week.
  • Five to seven presentations per training unit.
  • On-call rotation that may include a week day each week, and a weekend or holiday.
  • Group sessions three times weekly (included in 40-hour week).
  • Supervisory sessions once weekly (included in 40-hour week.

Supervisory Education students can expect a specialized education unique to their individual needs.


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