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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply for Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) at Bridgeport Hospital?

You can obtain an application from this website by clicking here. Your application should be forwarded directly to our CPE center. If you need support, please email Associate Director of Spiritual Care, Rabbi Jeffery Silberman, at [email protected]. If you wish to mail your application to us our address is:

Rabbi Jeffery Silberman
Bridgeport Hospital
Spiritual Care and Education Department
Clinical Pastoral Education
267 Grant Street
Bridgeport, Connecticut 06610

Once we have received your completed information we will contact you. We may or may not proceed with an interview, depending upon your qualifications as a potential student.

What are the requirements for enrolling in CPE?

In addition to completing the ACPE application, interested students need to have the following basic prerequisites:


  • Graduation from an accredited college or university
  • Theological study
  • Authorization to function in ministry by a religious authority
  • Ministry experience
  • Other educational experience

Additional Criteria for Residents:

  • Evaluations from previous CPE units or supervised ministry
  • Graduate level education or capacity to function at this level

Additional criteria for Supervisory CPE:

  • Successful meeting of Level II Outcomes
  • Previous ministry experience, which includes having functioned in a pastoral role for at least three years
  • Membership in ACPE, Inc.
  • Consultation with a Supervisory Readiness Committee

All CPE applicants must demonstrate:

  • Ability to function within a pastoral role
  • Motivation for challenge and personal growth
  • Willingness to be a contributing member of a small peer group
  • Ability to support persons of diverse religious traditions
  • Capacity to be a team member and to communicate professionally

Cost of travel for CPE interview:

  • All CPE interviews will be conducted by computer webcam when travel to the center is not possible.

What are the dates for CPE and deadlines for application?

ACPE applications are received on a continuous basis. Interviews typically begin nine months in advance of the intended unit. Applications for any particular unit will be accepted up to fifteen days prior to the beginning of that unit, unless our student capacity has been reached.

The residency year begins in August and consists of 3 consecutive units. Students interested in one unit of training may apply throughout the year.

Please note: The VA Connecticut Healthcare System, West Haven Campus, is an additional educational placement location of the Bridgeport Hospital CPE Summer and Part-time Programs. Dates below for these units are the same at both locations.

Full-Time Residency Aug 25 – May 29
Part-Time Extended Oct 7 – Apr 28

Summer 2014
Full-Time May 27 – Aug. 7

Full-Time Residency Aug 31 - May 31
Part-Time Extended Oct 6 - Apr 26

Summer 2015
Full-Time May 26 - Aug 11

What does CPE cost and are scholarships available?

Tuition is $850 per unit (summer and extended). For residents tuition is $200 per unit. There are no scholarship programs available to date.

I am an international student. How do I enroll in CPE?

International students should send their completed application to us. Once accepted, the student should contact the ACPE national office to apply for a visa. The visa process can take from six to nine months to complete. The visa must be obtained before you can begin CPE.

Do I have to be ordained to do CPE?


Can I get academic credit for CPE?

Many theological schools and seminaries grant academic credit for CPE. You should contact them directly for this information.

What are the different types of CPE?

ACPE offers Level I and Level II CPE, as well as Supervisory CPE, in sequence. The outcomes for each level must be completed before moving to the next level. CPE at Bridgeport Hospital is offered in single units (11 weeks), in a nine-month program (3 consecutive units), or through the Extended CPE Program which offers clinical training on a part-time basis over an eight month period.

Tell me more about the Extended CPE Program

The Extended CPE program is designed to offer CPE training to those who choose to receive clinical training on a part-time basis. Because groups meet only once a week, along with flexible clinical hours, many students continue their present employment while participating in the program. Extended CPE students participate in the on-call rotation twice a month, weekday from 4:30pm to 8am the next morning and once a month on the weekend for a twenty-four hour period 8am to 8am the next morning. One unit of accredited CPE training is granted after approximately 37 weeks (nine months).

Can I get CPE credit for previous work/ministry experience?

No, ACPE credit is not granted for previous work experience. However, your previous work/ministry experience will be considered during your application process.

I want to be a chaplain or a pastoral counselor. Do I need CPE?

The Association of Professional Chaplains, the National Association of Catholic Chaplains and the National Association of Jewish Chaplains and other organizations certify chaplains. The American Association of Pastoral Counselors trains and certifies pastoral counselors. Some CPE is required as a prerequisite. You should contact these organizations directly about their requirements.

Can I do CPE online or through some other distance learning process?

Bridgeport Hospital does not offer distance learning programs.