things all college ministers should learn

I have the exciting chance to help build a course for college ministers (both present and future) at the seminary level. I was asked to provide a list of topics that would be important to include in such a class. What would you include if you only had ONE class (14 weeks or so) to train future college ministers?

Obviously, if I think these things are this important, then I probably think this list is worth using as a checklist for any college ministers out there, too – no matter how long they’ve been serving. How clear are you on these topics? Here’s a big chunk of my list:

(Big thanks to Mike Armstrong for helping me think through a little more exhaustive list.)

The Branches of Collegiate Ministry

–          Campus-based (usually parachurch)

–          Church-based

–          Institutional (spiritual life / chaplaincy at Christian colleges)

–          Collegiate churches (churches designed with a specific focus on reaching collegians)

Major Organizations and their Models

–          Fully parachurch

  • Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ)
  • InterVarsity (along with International Fellowship of Evangelical Students)
  • Navigators
  • Young Life College
  • Student Mobilization

–          Denominational / Associational

  • Baptist Collegiate Ministry (BSM in Texas)
  • RUF
  • Chi Alpha
  • Wesley Foundation / UMC ministries
  • Association of College Ministries (Independent Christian Churches)
  • Church of Christ ministries
  • Lutheran Church (Missouri Synod) ministries
  • Newman Center / Catholic ministries
  • Mainline campus-based ministries

–          Hybrid models

  • Coalition for Christian Outreach
  • Campus Outreach

–          Niche-based ministry

  • International student ministry
  • Other niche-based ministry (FCA, Christian Medical & Dental Association, etc.)

Millennials & Post-modernism / campuses and their climate

Contextualizing your ministry (possibly with Church Planting or Missiological principles)

Practical Ecclesiology (how do we teach collegians about “churchmanship”?)

Mobilizing college students for Missions

Cults / Unhealthy ministry among college students

Apologetics for use in college ministry

Introduction to Teaching / Preaching

Small Group Ministry

Funding a Ministry


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