Integrative Chaplaincy Doctor of Ministry - MIRECC / CoE
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Integrative Chaplaincy Doctor of Ministry

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The Integrative Chaplaincy Doctor of Ministry (DMin) program is an exciting offering based on a partnership between Integrative Mental Health and Vanderbilt Divinity School.


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The DMin program was born out of years of prior work by Integrative Mental Health training VA and military chaplains through Mental Health Integration for Chaplain Services (MHICS). MHICS forms the basis for the first three of six semesters for the DMin, with VA chaplains accepted into MHICS having the option to complete MHICS alone or the full DMin.

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The Mental Health Integration for Chaplain Services (MHICS) program is an intensive sub-specialty training that aims to better equip chaplains in the care of Veterans and Service members with mental health-related concerns.

Chaplains learn to integrate principles from evidence-based practices (e.g., ACT, Motivational Interviewing, and Problem-Solving Training) that synergize with chaplaincy and foster a more integrative system of care through inter-professional collaboration.

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For more information about MHICS, including a comparison with the DMin option, see the MHICS Overview.

For more information about the Integrative Chaplaincy DMin, see the Vanderbilt Divinity School DMin website.

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Click here for MHICS Application for VA Chaplains

If you are a chaplain serving in the Veterans Administration (VA) and wish to apply for the MHICS training alone or the VA MHICS tuition discount for the DMin in Integrative Chaplaincy, complete the application linked above by February 1. MHICS applicants will be informed of their status at the beginning of March. VA chaplains accepted into MHICS who are interested in the DMin in Integrative Chaplaincy will then be provided with special instruction for applying to Vanderbilt Divinity School.

If you are a non-VA chaplain or are interested in applying for the Vanderbilt Divinity School DMin in Integrative Chaplaincy separate from the VA MHICS tuition discount process, visit the Vanderbilt Divinity School DMin website.

If you are interested in applying for MHICS and/or the DMin in Integrative Chaplaincy in the future, please provide your email address to be added to our mailing list.  

The Integrative Mental Health instructional team anchors the first three semesters (i.e., the MHICS portion) of the Integrative Chaplaincy DMin. The team brings diverse identities (as mental health professionals and chaplains) and experiences (in clinical, research, and educational settings) to help foster a highly interactive training experience.

Mental Health Instructors

Dr. Keith Meador

Keith Meador, MD, ThM, MPH, is a psychiatrist and practical theologian who founded Integrative Mental Health (initially Mental Health and Chaplaincy) for VA in 2008. He has been at Vanderbilt University since 2010, serving as Director of the Center for Biomedical Ethics and Society along with holding faculty appointments in the School of Medicine and Divinity School. Dr. Meador provides programmatic leadership and instruction for the Integrative Chaplaincy DMin.


Jennifer Wortmann

Jen Wortmann, PhD, is a clinical psychologist who has worked with Integrative Mental Health since 2016. She provides instruction, guidance, and consultation with students as part of the Integrative Chaplaincy DMin, facilitating practicum groups with chaplain coaches and evaluating coursework.


Jason Nieuwsma

Jason Nieuwsma, PhD, is a clinical psychologist who has worked with Integrative Mental Health since its inception in 2009 and played a substantial role in the initial development of the MHICS curriculum and development into a DMin offering. He provides instruction, guidance, and consultation with students as part of the Integrative Chaplaincy DMin.


Chaplain Coaches

Chaplain coaches interact with subsets of students in the Integrative Chaplaincy DMin through co-facilitation of practicum consultation groups.


Bill Cantrell

Bill Cantrell, MDiv, BCC (CAPT, CHC, USN retired), has worked with Integrative Mental Health since 2011. Fr. Cantrell has been instrumental in the development of MHICS, with 26 years as a Navy chaplain and extensive clinical experience utilizing ACT interventions in his spiritual care.


Paul Dordal

Paul Dordal, DMin, BCC-MH, serves as the Chief, Chaplain Service at VA Pittsburgh HCS and served as an Army Chaplain from 2008 to 2015. Chaplain Dordal is a MHICS alum and has extensive clinical experience utilizing ACT and PST interventions in his spiritual care.


Valerie Sanders

Valerie Sanders, DMin, LMFT, serves as a staff chaplain at the Atlanta VA HCS. Chaplain Sanders is a MHICS alum and has extensive clinical experience utilizing ACT and Motivational Interviewing interventions in her spiritual care.


Brynn White

Brynn White, MDiv, BCC-MH, is a 2016 MHICS alum who serves as a staff chaplain at the Coatesville VA Medical Center in Pennsylvania. She has an interest in earth-based spiritualities and is currently piloting “Shamanism as a Spiritual Practice” with Veterans who connect to the Sacred through nature. She is passionate about making spiritual space for Veterans who do not consider themselves “traditional,” “orthodox,” or “religious.”


Robin Booth

Robin D. Booth, DMin, ACPE Certified Educator, BCC, serves as the Director of Clinical Pastoral Education at the VA North Texas Health Care System. Chaplain Booth is a MHICS alum and has experience working and teaching in the area of Spirituality and Mental Health. He is an instructor at UT Southwest Medical School and offers a course on spirituality and mental health for Psychiatric Residents.


To read about the Vanderbilt faculty, view the Faculty Directory in the menu on the Vanderbilt Divinity School DMin website.

"I find this educational format and delivery system the best of my graduate and post-graduate studies. The quality of the videos, poignant and challenging reaction and response questions, face-to-face video calls, case studies, in-person meetings, and the challenge to integrate the learning into my environment as a practical reality makes this one of the most comprehensive experiential education programs I have ever seen."

”I have to say, this is the first time in my adult life that I have really enjoyed my training experience. It was challenging, and a lot of work, but I would not change anything…I am truly better for having taken this journey. Thank you for traveling with me.”

What other alumni have said about their training…


Collaboration/Interdisciplinary Work

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"This course helped me to see the value in collaborative relationships and how they are essential in meeting the spiritual needs of Veterans suffering with [serious mental health concerns]."

”This course had made me more aware of what happens on the other side of the curtain when I refer service members to mental health. I have found a new awareness of how seriously mental illness can impact individuals and what role religion can play in care.”

"…provided me with tools for pastoral care I had not previously been using ... brought me up to date on research … [and enhanced my ability] to communicate to mental health providers."



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"Throughout the last two semesters I have gained more real-world skills as a chaplain to provide pastoral care than I did in most of my classes spent in seminary. "

"It confirmed the work I am doing and challenged me to continue to grow and learn as a Chaplain. "

"There was nothing presented that was not useful to me. This is excellent training! I am honest when I say that this training is immediately applicable to my work place."



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"Going through this program alongside our peers in the VA and DOD is a wonderful process and I look forward to the interactions each week."

"There was a great diversity of students and mutual respect in the classroom. The difference of perspectives offered contrasting views and challenged me to have a broader viewpoint."

"My small group became a wonderful source of encouragement and accountability. We were able to wrestle with the subject matter and learn from each other. As we shared [case studies], we could learn even more through each other's experiences. The interaction with this group greatly augmented my learning of the material."



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"Grateful for this program and using it everyday in my care for people! ... I am so grateful for your leadership of us through this program. Thankful that you and your exceptional team are arming us with knowledge and best practices to serve well."

"The collection of teachers have been nothing short of abundantly supportive and flexible.

"I have given excellent ratings to the entire program of MHICS. The challenge to integrate the learning into my environment as a practical reality makes this one of the most comprehensive experiential education programs I have ever seen. Kudos to all who created it, refined it, and continue to deliver it in a most professional and enjoyable manner."

Over 150 VA and DoD chaplains have completed MHICS. MHICS-trained chaplains are located across the globe and embody meaningful potential to function as a network of specially-equipped chaplains to address military-to-civilian transition challenges.


Chaplain locations change frequently, especially in DoD, but we keep an active directory of VA chaplains for community and military providers who wish to connect transitioning Service members to a chaplain in the VA trained to provide an evidence-based skillset.

MHICS Alumni


2018-2019 MHICS Cohort

Cohort 4 MHICS Class


DoD Peter Agdamag (Navy); Micah Baker (Air Force); Tamas Biro (Army Reserve); Philip Carson (Navy); Rob Compere (Air Force); Juan Crockett (Army); Matthew Deitner (Army National Guard); John Denny (Army National Guard); Ian Howarth (Air National Guard); Takana Jefferson (Navy); David Keel (Air Force); Charles Kim (Air Force); David Kim (Navy); Chris Melvin (Army National Guard); Andy Peck (Air Force); Jeffrey Perry (Navy); Steve Peters (Air National Guard); Rob Pitts (Air Force); Jessica Prophitt (Air Force); Twig Sargent (Navy); Philip Scarbrough (Navy)


VA Anthony D. Allen; Robin Booth; Robert Brady; Carter Check; Jim Duke; Ryan Lee Duncan; Victoria Fishel; Clay Fouse; Beth Gobeli; Richard Green; Tony Headrick; Mary Huie-Jolly; Sean LaBat (Navy Reserve); Mike Antoinette McGruder; Linda McKnight; Kristen Melton; Rebecca Morris; Eldred H. Moye Sr.; Adam Page; Ryan Parker; Karen Pickler; Patrick Whiteford


2017-2018 MHICS Cohort

Cohort 3 MHICS Class


DoD Jeremiah Blackburn (Air Force); Robert Bradshaw (Navy); Michael Carollo (Air Force); Robert Carter (Army Reserve); Tara Dixon (Air Force); Rashad El-Saddiq (Air Force Reserve); Aaron Fuller (Navy Reserve); Henry Hahm (Air Force); Travis Hairston (Army); Jason Hart (Navy); Steven Hervey (Navy); Michael Kennedy (Navy); A'Shellarien Lang (Army National Guard); Michael Moreno (Navy Reserve); Christopher Morgan (Navy); Brent Mulder (Air Force); Christina Pryor-Pittman (Air National Guard); Nakia Robinson (Army Reserve); Kevin Sears (Army); Richard Smothers (Navy); Gerald Woodford (Army)


VA Chris Antal; Brett Cartwright (Navy Reserve); Linda Conyers; Jennifer Crane; Shirley Craven; Paul Dordal; Jennifer Dukes; Fredi Eckhardt; Sara Emmerich; Janis Grubbs; Charles Hall; Manuel Mak; Barrington Malcolm; Gary Morris; James Parnell (Army National Guard); Patricia Roberts; Edward Rogland (Army National Guard); Henry Rutledge; Robin Sullens; Drew Tomberlin; David White; Phillip Willis Jr. (Army Reserve)


2017-2018 MHICS Cohort

Cohort 2 MHICS Class


DoD Michael Bram (Air Force); Bryan Davenport (Navy); Clay Edinger (Navy); Kenya Gray (Air Force); Frances Igboeli (Army); Clayton Jones (Navy); Jason Knudeson (Air Force); Linda Lesane (Army); Dallas Little (Air Force); Benjamin Mayhugh (Navy); Eamon McGraw (Navy); Michael McGruder (Army); Linda Murtala (Army); Charles Owens (Navy); Robert Sterling (Army); Christopher Sutton (Navy); Yoni Warren (Navy); Jeromy Wells (Air Force)

VA Ethel Bamberg-Revis; Herbert Becker; Douglas Falls; Janet Hanson; James Hughes; Lannie Lake; Ann Luna; David McElwain; Robert Mueller; Abdul-Rasheed Muhammad; Lance Qualmann; Richard Ross; Valerie Sanders; Steven Smith; LaRon Stover; Bruce Swingle; Chris Van Inwagen; Brynn White; Kimberly Willis; Will Wise


2014-2015 MHICS Cohort

Cohort 1 MHICS Class

DoD Jesse Adkinson (Army); Chad Bellamy (Air Force); Carlos Brito (Air Force); Sean Burson (Air Force); Matthew Cassady (Army); Bruce Crouterfield (Navy); Christopher Earley (Navy); Stephanie Handy (Army); Alfred Matthews (Army); Baron Miller (Navy); David Ravenscraft (Army); Peter Robinson (Army); Ben Sandford (Navy); Chuck Seligman (Air Force); Matthew Stevens (Navy); John Tarr (Navy); Mike Tomlinson (Navy)


VA Constance Arthur; Nancy Cornell; Alejandro De Jesus; Octavio Di Iulio; George Diller; Tammie Elfadili (Army Reserve); Jennifer Hanksmeyer; Kerry Haynes; Gretchen Hulse (Air Force Reserve); Beverly Hume; Lyn Juckniess; Brian Manigold; Rob McLaren; Joe McMahan; Elizabeth Putnam; Louise Shaw; Ronald Skaggs; Cliff Vicars