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AU News

BEMCSC Baptist Group partners with AU’s Clamp Divinity School

January 10, 2017

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At its mid-winter Board meeting, the Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina (BEMCSC) voted to establish a formal partnership with the Clamp Divinity School of Anderson University.

Through the new partnership, the Clamp Divinity School will become the center for graduate theological education for churches of the BEMCSC. Members of participating BEMCSC churches will qualify for a special scholarship offered through the partnership for students enrolled in the Master of Divinity and Master of Ministry degree programs at Anderson.

The Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina was founded in 1877, by a group of black men who came together to enhance the quality of life in their churches and to provide a means of bringing churches together on a statewide basis to address the educational needs of African Americans of all ages. The Convention is comprised of 1,100 Baptist churches and 230,000 individual members across the state of South Carolina.

“We are excited to enter into this partnership with the Clamp Divinity School of Anderson University, and believe it will be a blessing to our member churches and to present and future generations of ministers who will benefit from seminary training through this relationship,” said Rev. James Blassingame, President of the BEMCSC. Blassingame has served as pastor of the Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church in Sumter, SC since 1984.

The BEMCSC currently supports two liberal arts colleges, Morris College and Benedict College, but did not previously have a formal affiliation with a seminary or divinity school.

“As the Baptist seminary of South Carolina, we believe this is an ideal partnership that will serve the churches of the BEMCSC and strengthen the Clamp Divinity School’s outreach and service to the congregations of our state,” explains Michael Duduit, founding dean of the Clamp School. “Our focus at Clamp is to provide graduate training for pastors and church leaders that is solidly biblical and intensely practical, and in that we share a common Kingdom mission with the churches of the BEMCSC.”

The Clamp Divinity School of Anderson University was established in 2009 and now offers Master of Divinity, Master of Ministry, and Doctor of Ministry degrees in both traditional seated and online formats. More information about the Clamp School is available at or by calling (864) 328-1809.

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