Youth America College is a unique combination of a hands-on ministry internship and a premier college education.
- Regionally Accredited College Classes* – Premier Educational Program – Youth America has partnered with Southeastern University (Lakeland, FL) to host an instructional site on the Youth America campus. For accreditation and academic program details, see the university website. Our classroom environments and all teachers are approved by Southeastern University.
- Hands-on Leadership Training – A major part of our program are the practicum hours we allow in the weekly schedule. Students will be working closely in various areas of the church, learning the ins and outs of leadership, ministry, team building, specific skills training and much more. This is at the very heart of our program. The exposure to these different settings of learning will not just train you for ministry avenues but for any route you take in life.
- Personal Mentoring – This is not simply a college, but a true developmental program. In attending Youth America College, you are not simply a student, but part of the family and a future leader in training. It is of the utmost importance that we not only teach students but also mentor them in the most basic things to prepare them for life. Whether in your personal life, spiritual life, future planning, or simply walking with you through various challenges, it is our heart to invest in your life in a mentoring fashion and not just by instruction.
- Family Atmosphere – Possibly the most unique part of Youth America College is that we cultivate a family atmosphere. This is not simply a school or an internship – we consider our students to be family. As the year progresses you will find that you belong to a family, not simply a college. Our students are deeply interwoven in the vision and heart of our Senior Pastor, our staff and our church. Throughout the year you will find various activities, trips and memorable moments that will form not just as a student body, but also as a family.
- Church of the Harvest Involvement – One of the core purposes of Youth America College is to instill a love for the local church. Students of Youth America College will be fully immersed in church life at Church of the Harvest. This is one of the most exciting and rewarding things about being a student. With 5 different campuses, Church of the Harvest offers a variety of ways to be involved and an array of different settings in which students are exposed.
- Youth America Summer Camps and Conferences – This is possibly the most rewarding part of being a Youth America College student. Youth America holds various events throughout the year. In each of these events students will play primary roles in operating and leading these events. The most memorable events are our summer camps, which see over 130 different churches and over 4,500 students in attendance. Throughout the year, students will be learning, preparing and being trained to take on major roles to run our Youth America Summer camps. These camps are what we consider to be the finale to our program. Playing a major part in running Youth America will become one of the greatest memories a student will carry with them for the rest of their life.
HOW IS THIS DIFFERENT FROM A TRADITIONAL COLLEGE?
Perhaps most, if not all, of what is listed above would define why the Youth America College experience greatly differs from a typical college. Here are a few more things that make it unique.
- Faculty and staff are active in student’s lives. Again, our main goal is not that a student would just come and perform what is required of them, but that they would make major leaps forward to what God has called them to do and who He has called them to be.
- Our program for 1 or 2-year students is a year long, not 9 months. Of course there are traditional breaks for holidays and more to supplement being engaged for a year. But our program ends in what is the “super bowl” event of the entire year, Youth America Summer Camps. Our students are key to running every major role of our camp. We see it as not only an individually life-changing experience, but also an opportunity for leadership sharpening and personal growth in responsibility and capacity that you just can’t reproduce in another setting.
Students are integrated into the life of a local church. We believe that nothing can truly thrive when it’s not connected to God’s house and His body of believers – the church. Whether it’s small groups, prayer nights, women’s events, men’s events and of course weekly services, receiving the backing and support of a church family is necessary for a balanced educational season of life. Youth America College is an educational ministry of Church of the Harvest, which provides an amazing environment for students to thrive. Church of the Harvest is a multi-cultural, multi-site, non-denominational church. With campuses in 5 different cities (3 in the OKC metro area) we see 2000 people in attendance each week. Students are fully involved in the ministries and functions of the church. This leads to the development of strong, life-giving relationships with kingdom-minded people to help encourage our students throughout the year.
*Southeastern University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate, baccalaureate, masters, and doctorate degrees. Youth America College is not accredited by SACS Commission on Colleges and the accreditation of Southeastern University does not extend to or include Youth America College or its students. Students must be admitted by Southeastern University and enrolled in university courses to receive the benefits of regional accreditation.