FAQ & Theology Degree Programs | Franciscan School of Theology



Below you will find answers to many of your questions. If you do not find your answers here or elsewhere on the Franciscan School of Theology website, you are welcome to contact us by phone, email, or by using our “Contact us” web form.

Does the Franciscan School of Theology admit lay persons?

Our students come from all walks of life, both lay and religious. Our Requirements Page gives more information about requirements for our degrees and non-degree programs.

I am interested in attending, but unsure of a degree program. Can I take courses part-time?

Both degree and non-degree students can attend the Franciscan School part-time. If you are undecided about whether to enroll in a degree program you may enroll as non-degree student. Up to 24 non-degree credits may be transferred to a degree program.

As a student at FST, will I be able to take classes at the University of San Diego?

FST students have the opportunity to enroll in graduate-level courses complementing their degree programs, taught at the University of San Diego’s Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, the School of Leadership and Education Sciences (SOLES), and the School of Business. Interested students work with their advisors to select courses appropriate to their individual course of studies.

Do I have to be Catholic to attend FST?

The Franciscan School of Theology gladly welcomes people of all beliefs to share in the Franciscan Spiritual and Intellectual Tradition – you do not need to be Roman Catholic to attend. FST is a Roman Catholic institution.

What do graduates do with their degrees?

Our graduates go on to serve in all sectors of society. You will find FST alumni working as educators, pastoral ministers, priests, counselors, campus ministers, social workers, non-profit leaders, chaplains, missionaries, school administrators, liturgists, youth ministers, doctoral students, faith formators, human rights advocates, musicians, program directors, and many other fields.

Are correspondence or long-distance programs offered?

The Franciscan School of theology does not offer online degree programs. However, we offer a number of “hybrid” courses that combine in-class and online meetings and materials. Contact our admissions office for more information about our hybrid courses.

Does FST offer financial assistance?

Yes. The Franciscan School of Theology offers financial aid in the form scholarships, tuition assistance, programs for employees of Catholic institutions, and a program for professed members of the Secular Franciscan Order. In addition, FST participates in the Federal Direct Loan Program, open to US citizens and permanent residents. Alumni can also audit courses as Clare of Assisi Scholars at a discounted rate.

Does the Franciscan School offer student housing?

The Franciscan School of Theology does not offer student housing, but various rental options exist in San Diego and the surrounding area. The following websites may help you in your search for the right place. These resources are shared for information purposes only. FST does not endorse or recommend any of these services.

Off-Campus Housing by USD 

Apartment Finder


What about health insurance?

All Franciscan School of Theology full-time students are required to carry health insurance. This requirement ensures that students in need of health care and/or mental health care can access the appropriate resources in the community. Affordable student health insurance is provided by Gallagher Student Health. Students have the option of waiving this coverage if they already have health insurance. More direction may be found in the MyFST Student Portal.

Does the Franciscan School of Theology admit International Students?

The Franciscan School of Theology has a long history of welcoming and enrolling students from all over the world. Germany, Korea, Vietnam, Guam, Spain, China, the Philippines, Ireland, Japan, South Africa and Mexico are just some of the countries from which our students have come. FST is authorized under federal law to enroll non-immigrant students.

How do I log in to MyFST?

Students, faculty, and staff of the Franciscan School of Theology can log in to the MyFST portal using the links at the top and bottom of our web pages. Or, you can type “myfst.sandiego.edu” into the address bar of your browser.