Facebook pixel Chapel | Pepperdine University | Seaver College Skip to main content
Pepperdine | Seaver College
Students talking in front of Stauffer Chapel


The Chapel program at Seaver College seeks to express the radical hospitality of Jesus, so that all students feel welcomed into our community to explore the Christian faith through the themes of love, truth, goodness, and beauty. The program is designed to welcome first- and second-year students, introduce them to the mission and Christian community of Pepperdine, and connect them with faculty, staff, and student programs. The Chapel program seeks to inspire spiritual growth and set students on a path to pursuing the good life, that is, a life grounded in the love of God, neighbor, and self, devoted to the service of others, and enlivened by the continual pursuit of wisdom and human flourishing. In keeping with George Pepperdine's founding vision, the program is dedicated to character formation in the context of students’ spiritual journeys, presenting some of life’s most essential questions and equipping students with tools to discover the answers.

"We want to present to you, in teaching and example, the Christian way of life. We do not compel you to accept it. You are free to make your own choice, but we want you to know what it is." - George Pepperdine


Academic Requirements

Chapel is an academic credit-bearing program for first-year and second-year residential students including transfers. Students will attend 13 Chapels each semester.

Chapel Schedule

Fall 2024 Spring 2025
August 21: Core Chapel  January 15: Core Chapel 
August 28: Connection Chapel/Welcome Chapel January 22: Connection Chapel
September 4: Connection Chapel/Welcome Chapel January 29: Connection Chapel
September 11: Connection Chapel/Welcome Chapel February 5: Connection Chapel
September 18: Core Chapel – Founder’s Day February 12: Core Chapel 
September 25: Core Chapel February 19: Core Chapel 
October 2: Connection Chapel/RISE  February 26: Connection Chapel 
October 9: Connection Chapel/RISE March 12: Connection Chapel
October 16: Connection Chapel/RISE  March 19: Connection Chapel
October 23: Connection Chapel/RISE March 26: Connection Chapel
October 30: Connection Chapel/RISE April 2: Connection Chapel
November 6: Connection Chapel/RISE April 9: Connection Chapel
November 13: Core Chapel April 16: Core Chapel 


Frequently Asked Questions

  Enrollment and Participation

Who is required to enroll in the Chapel program?

First- and second-year residential students, including students participating in international programs.

As outlined in the Housing and Residence Life residency requirements, students are required to live on campus for their first four semesters as Pepperdine students. Any student required to maintain campus residence (domestic or abroad), as determined by the University, will also be required to complete the Chapel program.

I do not live on campus. Do I have to participate in Chapel?

No. Chapel is a residential-based program.

I am a junior or senior in credits, but a sophomore living on campus. Do I have to enroll in Chapel?

If, as determined by the University, you are required to maintain campus residence (domestic or abroad), then you are required to enroll in Chapel.

I am in my third year at Pepperdine, but I am a sophomore in credits. Do I have to enroll in Chapel?

If, as determined by the University, you are required to maintain campus residence (domestic or abroad), then you are required to enroll in Chapel.

I am a transfer student. Am I required to participate in Chapel?

Transfer students are required to live on campus for one academic year and, as such, should complete two semesters of Chapel. Transfer students will participate in the second year of the program.

First-year spring admits are required to live on campus for three semesters and, as such, will complete three semesters of Chapel.

Sophomore spring transfers are required to live on campus for one semester and, as such, will complete one semester of the program.

Transfer students who are not required to live on campus via the housing exemption process are exempt from Chapel.

How is Chapel graded?

The grading scale is based on 13 weeks per semester of participation with students being allowed one absence to maintain an A grade. If a student misses two or more weeks of participation, the grade will progressively decline. 13=A, 12=A, 11=A-, 10=B+, 9=B, 8=B-, 7=C+, 6=C, 5=C-, 4=F, 0-3=F

How is Chapel calculated into a student's GPA?

Chapel is a series of four 0.5 credit-hour classes, taken during the first four semesters of a student's time at Pepperdine. A first-year student admitted in the fall should register according to the schedule below.

Term Credits
First Year, Fall Semester


First Year, Spring Semester


Second Year, Fall Semester (Malibu or International Programs)


Second Year, Spring Semester (Malibu or International Programs)


Total Credits: 2 (weighted)

Does Chapel affect my transcripts? What about when I apply to graduate schools?

Seaver College will work with the enrollment office to ensure all students' transcripts reflect their Chapel participation correctly. The grade received in Chapel is calculated as part of a student's cumulative GPA but does not count toward the required  total of 128 units for graduation. Chapel will be recorded on all transcripts, including for those applying to graduate school.

If a student notices an error, please promptly reach out to the Chapel office to discuss the matter.

What is Connection Chapel? Must I attend?

First-year students will attend a RISE Connection Chapel for four sessions in the fall semester and for four additional sessions in the spring semester. This RISE group focuses on spiritually-informed resilience education and training. The groups will be led by a staff or faculty member and will be an opportunity to connect with other first-year students in a smaller setting. Following the four RISE sessions each semester, first-year students will attend a five-week elective Connection Chapel focused on spiritual development and formation.

Malibu-based sophomore students will attend nine weekly elective Connection Chapels during both semesters of their sophomore year. Sophomores in International Programs will experience 13 weeks of programming at their abroad location, led by their program directors.

More information on Connection Chapel and topics will be provided. Students will be invited to enroll through WaveNet during the summer of 2023. 

How will students know where to go for their Connection Chapel?

Locations will appear on students’ schedules in WaveNet and Navigate. After students enroll, they will receive communication from their Connection Chapel leaders with welcome information, instructions, and contact information.

  Attendance and Exemptions

How will you take attendance for Chapel?

Students attending Core Chapels will utilize an app to sign in. Leaders of Connection Chapels will take attendance each week. Scans will only be counted within 10 minutes of the start of the event and students must stay for the event's entirety to receive credit. Any attempt to falsify attendance in any way will be considered a violation of the Code of Academic Integrity and addressed accordingly.

Can I file for an exemption from Chapel?

Students with documented disabilities may request exemptions from Chapel through the Office of Student Accessibility. Exemption requests require medical documentation. Additionally, in the event of an emergency, students may work with the Student Care Team to address short-term challenges and concerns.

Can I apply for exemption without going through the Office of Student Accessibility?

Generally, no. However, students who have military deployment may seek an exemption via the Chapel office. If you feel you have an extenuating circumstance not listed here, that would qualify you for an exemption from the requirements of this program, please contact the Chapel office.

  Third- and Fourth-Year Opportunities

Are third- and fourth-year students required to attend Chapel?

No. This is a required program for first- and second-year residential students, but all students are encouraged and welcomed to attend. Additional spiritual life opportunities for juniors and seniors are listed on the HUB for Spiritual Life website.

How can juniors and seniors get involved in spiritual life on campus?

Juniors and seniors are encouraged to contact the Hub for Spiritual Life to be connected with a faculty/staff spiritual mentor. Additionally, juniors and seniors can elect to get involved in a myriad of spiritual life opportunities on campus, including worship gatherings, student ministries, spiritual care, Bible studies, and more. Juniors and seniors are also invited to apply for spiritual leadership opportunities on campus, such as the Spiritual Life Advisor (SLA) program or the student ministries leadership program.

We also encourage juniors and seniors to serve as leaders in Connection Chapels and Core Chapels. Lastly, juniors and seniors have the opportunity to serve on the Core Chapel  hospitality team as a paid team member, be featured in Core Chapel content, and assist faculty and staff in leading their Connection Chapel groups. Any junior or senior interested in applying to become a paid member of the hospitality team should contact the Chapel office.

  Questions and Support

Who can a student talk to if they have additional questions?

Please contact the Chapel office with additional questions.