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What to Expect


    The ability to communicate well is essential for youth work. This course will introduce you to communication that is relevant and genuine, and invites youth to realize how God’s story is intersecting with their story. We’ll practice recognizing and creating teachable moments in the everyday “stuff” of life, as well as the skills of intentionally introducing life changing truth by walking through the doors youth are offering to us.
    Evangelism is defined by the dictionary as an earnest effort for the spread of the Gospel. At times it seems that the effectiveness of evangelism has been judged by the amount of effort, rather than the amount of love that motivates the effort. But souls are not meant to be “won”; souls are meant to be loved. This course seeks to introduce students to the heart of God for those who don’t know Him yet, and looks at practical ways of introducing His heart to this generation.
    The motivation for youth outreach is established in God’s passion for reaching out to the world through the incarnation of Jesus. In doing so, God showed us the value of “being present” and coming alongside others in the middle of their difficulties. In this course we will follow that model as we explore who young people are and what matters to them, allowing us to step with them into the issues of their lives with compassion and understanding. You will be introduced to the roles and relationships of the different participants and programs in community youth work, as well as the opportunities for involvement in this sphere. We will also explore who we are as youth workers, understanding that often impact comes not through what we know but who we are in the lives of young people.
    Individuals involved in ministry are often faced with the challenge of holding onto a false spirituality based on doing for God rather than being. An understanding of our spirituality as something that comes from God, rather than something we make happen by keeping busy, can help us to focus on clearing space for God to work, rather than simply working for God. In this course we will take a look at the way spirituality is lived out by being introduced to the spiritual journeys of a variety of guest presenters who are involved in ministry at different levels. Engaging both discussion and practice, you will have the chance to apply classroom concepts to your personal spiritual walk and ministry. Through days of silence, journaling, spiritual mentoring, and a solo retreat, we create a space for students to experience being with God, and then we leave the results up to him.
    In this course we will work toward learning and using skills for helping others through life’s difficulties and frustrations. Developing listening and supporting skills will not only allow us to be truly helpful to teens, but also to the friends and family around us. The ability to create an environment around people that invites and encourages growth in them, can open up the way for God to move in both their lives and ours.
    This course is highly experiential and takes the student on a guided practical journey through the conception, implementation and evaluation of creative and effective programs and events for youth. Working in teams and individually, students are given the opportunity to walk through each part of the program design process in a variety of settings, with ongoing feedback, instruction and support. From running mission trips to events to classes and out trips – you will walk away from this course with increased competence and confidence, as well as a greater understanding of the framework and skills necessary for developing and running programs that make a difference for youth.
    In the desire to be helpful to those deemed “in need”, the Christian community has sometimes been guilty of hurting the very ones they have come to serve. A thoughtful approach to social justice involvement can open the way for engagement based on the recognition that both parties possess needs and assets to bring to the experience, allowing for the goal of mutual transformation. Through this course the students will be invited to explore new ways of thinking and acting justly in everyday life as well as in the presence of material poverty. They will also have the opportunity to form a philosophy of social justice engagement and then pass that philosophy on to teens who are exploring this idea for themselves.
    The word “vulnerable” means that a youth is in need of special care, support and attention. In this course, we will take a look at a collection of issues that vulnerable youth face - such as homelessness, addictions, anxiety, self harm and mental illness - and find starting places for understanding and responding to each of them. You will be introduced to youth work practitioners, who work with these youth issues in the field, and learn from them. In the end, our hope is that you will walk away with a measure of confidence in approaching youth work in the community and competence in making an impact there as well.
    Over the eight month course the student will put in a total of 360 hours at their ministry placement. This opportunity for hands-on learning will allow students to observe and practice youth work skills, under the supervision of veteran youth workers. Each placement will have a ministry mentor that will meet weekly with the student to offer feedback and guidance. There will be a midterm and final evaluation with the student, their ministry mentor and the program director.


If this stuff resonates with you – apply. If you feel a tap, tug, or push to check us out – apply. If you want to have fun, be challenged, go deeper with God, learn useful skill sets, and be part of a growing community of people taking the plunge to live intentionally – apply. If you know someone who is and wants all these things – encourage them to apply. 

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