Welcome to NWACPE



In October of 2008, Northwest Arkansas Clinical Pastoral Education Institute became an incorporated entity and received it’s 501 ( c ) 3 letter of determination from the IRS in July of 2009.  Its Board of Directors saw much promise in the educational opportunities the Institute could bring to Northwest Arkansas. 

The Institute is accredited by the College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy to offer Clinical Pastoral Education.  In addition,  the Institute offers other quality pastoral education programs for local clergy, seminary students, corporate chaplains, spiritual care directors, counselors, first responders and other individuals interested in learning the Art of Pastoral Care.  (see programs)  Clinical Pastoral Education was formerly offered by the Pastoral Care Department of Northwest Health System.

The Institute teaches professional skills that enable interns to focus on being present for those in need of pastoral care. They also sponsor an annual Pastoral Care Seminar available to area clergy, counselors and social workers providing a fresh “cutting edge” perspective on pastoral care from a nationally known speaker’s perspective. The Institute provides Clinical Pastoral Education interns with the opportunity to experience the clinical environment and contracts with Northwest Health System as its clinical site.  CPE Interns cover call for all three NHS campuses by responding to pastoral care needs as they arise.

Student Interns seek Clinical Pastoral Education for several reasons: 

  • fulfilling ordination requirements
  • seminary or graduate level credit
  • fulfilling  requirements for board certification as a chaplain
  • ministry discernment process
  • professional pastoral care skills for specialized ministry
  • to process ministry and personal pastoral issues

Clinical Pastoral Education is by invitation only and each unit consists of approximately 4-7  interns.   Invitation to a unit of Clinical Pastoral Education is extended after an interview with the Executive Director.  If you are interested in Clinical Pastoral Education, please complete the application.  Extended units cover six months beginning in July and January of each year. 

The Institute applies for grants from area foundations and depends on philanthropic individuals and area churches to fund their programs.  

Special Focus Areas

The Northwest Arkansas CPE Institute offers special focus areas for interns and residents which include:

  • Neonatal Intensive Care
  • Geriatrics
  • Industrial Chaplaincy
  • Cardio-Vascular Liaison Services
  • Emergency Department
  • Biomedical Ethics
  • Hospice/Palliative Care

An online CPE delivery option is in its developmental stage at this time. 

Read about the recent Pastoral Care seminar here.

Institute Chaplains Service Areas


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