It is our desire that our ministry wives not only survive in ministry, but that they thrive.

From the Director

My name is Tara Dew, and I’m so glad you’re here. It is my vision to see ministry wives succeed in their calling from God.

What is Thrive?

Thrive is a ministry wives certificate that prepares women for gospel ministry in their families, churches, and communities.

Meet the Thrive team

Our team of teachers looks forward to encouraging and discipling you both in the classroom and in life. We are excited to serve you as you prepare for whatever ministry to which God has called you.

Thrive merges biblical instruction and practical application in an academic, discipleship setting with faculty wives and fellow students.


Courses are on a 2 year rotation

Essentials for Ministry Wives


Healthy Habits for Ministry Families and Marriages


How to Study and Teach the Bible


Understanding the Grand Narrative of Scripture


Introduction to Soul Care


Foundational Principles for Interpersonal Relationships


Basic Christian Doctrine and Worldview


Evangelism and Disciple-making for Ministry Wives


Thrive classes are held on Tuesday nights from 6:30-8:30 pm and are FREE for residential student wives.
(If you are off-campus or unable to attend on Tuesday nights, you can also choose to take the same class in an online Nola2U Flex format.) We encourage all students to take two, 8-week classes per semester.

“For 8 years in ministry, I have tried to figure it out as it comes my way. All the messiness and relationships. Now… I feel equipped!”

Emily B

Frequently Asked Questions

What do I have to do in each class?

Each Thrive course will have the same requirements, so that there is consistency in structure throughout the certificate. Each course will have 1 textbook and the students will be required to attend and participate in class, write a 1-page book summary, and write a 3-5 page reflection paper.

Is this an academic program?

This certificate is offered as an academic program through Leavell College. To complete Thrive: A Ministry Wives Certificate, each student must complete the 8 required courses, each of which is worth one credit hour. Since these are offered every 8-weeks, on a rotating schedule, a student will be able to complete two courses per semester and the entire 8 credit hour certificate in 2 years. Once a student has completed all 8 courses, she is eligible to graduate during the December or May graduation ceremony and will receive her certificate. A student who has completed her Thrive certificate can transfer those hours into any degree program. Click here for pathways to degrees.

How much does it cost?

The tuition for each Thrive class is $200 for SBC students (or $300 for nonSBC students). If you choose to participate in the NOLA2U Flex (Online) Thrive classes, you will be charged an additional $80 internet program fee per class.

If you’re the wife of a current student, then your application fee, tuition, and childcare is completely covered, free of charge! This is because of two very generous endowments honoring Ann Allen & Mary French. It is their desire that wives be trained for ministry alongside their student-husbands with little to no cost. Wives of current students will be charged the full cost of Thrive classes when registered, and the tuition scholarship will be applied to your account after the course add/drop period for that term. (Please note: the Internet program fee is not covered by scholarship for NOLA2U Flex/Online.)

If your husband is not a current student, you are still welcome to take Thrive classes, but the above tuition scholarships wouldn’t apply. There is also no childcare available in this option, and a $40 application fee will be charged to enroll in the program.

Is there any financial aid available?

Yes! Right now, in addition to the Mary French and Ann Allen endowments, we have a scholarship for African American students. Click here to learn more!

We also have full scholarships available for the wives of Caskey students ( to take Thrive classes online or in person. If your spouse is a Caskey scholarship recipient, then you can be too! Contact or for more information. After registering for the course(s), please fill out this form to receive the scholarship!

If you are already a ministry wife serving in Louisiana, there are a couple scholarship options. Just click here for the first and click here for the second, to apply for these scholarship through the Women’s Ministry and Missions Branch of the Louisiana Baptist State Convention. They are offering all current ministry wives in our state, a $100 scholarship per course- That is a 50% savings, bringing the tuition from $200 to $100 per class!

Since we are working to raise more money for financial aid for our Thrive students, this FAQ will change periodically. Please keep checking back!

How can I succeed in the program?
Whenever you enter Thrive, you will be with a “cohort” (small group) of friends throughout the program. These women understand the pressures of seminary and are here preparing just like you. It is our goal that these friendships will last way beyond the class times and will become a network of support for you in ministry. You will take the classes together and help each other in life, in class, and one day in ministry.

Click here for a printable checklist of classes and other important reminders.

Why is it free for spouses of residential NOBTS/LC students?
We have two amazing endowments that cover the costs of this program. “The Mary French Ministry Wife Program Endowment” and the “Ann Allen Ministry Wife Excellence Fund” enable student wives to be trained to serve the Lord alongside their husbands, just like Mary French and Ann Allen did.

Mary French

    • Learn more about Mary French: Mary French was a godly ministry wife. She faithfully served the Lord alongside her husband Dr. Tommy French for 56 years. She came to know the Lord at the age of 7 and married at the age of 21. She was the pastor’s wife of Baptist churches in Texas and Louisiana. She loved other ministry wives and encouraged them to use their own spiritual gifts in ministry through the local church.

Mary French

    • Learn more about Ann Allen: Ann and Ray Allen have a heart for ministers’ wives. Married for over 50 years, Ray received his pastoral training here at NOBTS and then served in a variety of churches in Mississippi. His wife Ann was always supportive and by his side. Knowing the many struggles of pastors’ wives, Ann and Ray wanted to begin this scholarship fund to help student spouses to be trained alongside their husbands for ministry.
    • Would you also like to give toward the Ministry Wives Program here at NOBTS?
How do I sign up for childcare?
To take advantage of the free childcare while you are in class, please email our childcare coordinator at
Can I participate in Thrive even if we aren’t in seminary?

Yes! We desire to train ANY ministry wives that God brings to us! If you are local to New Orleans, you are welcome to attend class in person. If you are in a different part of the state or country, you can participate online. 

Do Thrive classes count toward IMB spouse requirements?

Yes! The 8 Thrive classes (and the additional 4 in the “Thrive +” Program) fulfill all theological requirements for spouses to serve with the International Mission Board. Click here to learn more.

How do I apply?

Just click here.


Are you an IMB Spouse?

Thrive+ is now approved to satisfy the spouse requirement for serving overseas.

Don’t miss date night!

Each semester, Thrive kicks off with a “Date Night.” It is our goal to enrich and cultivate the marriages of our students while they are in seminary, so that they can create habits that will last in ministry. These date nights feature faculty and their wives, discussing pertinent topics to marriage.

Have a question?

We’d love to hear from you!

“What I love so much about this program is it gives us a roadmap for navigating through the struggles of ministry. Each class has left me feeling more equipped and with a more profound love for the life of ministry.”

• Courtney L. •

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