Faith Meets Experience: Your Guide to Church Summer Internship Programs
At the intersection of faith and experience lies an opportunity for growth, learning, and service: church summer internships. These programs offer young adults the chance to explore their faith, gain valuable experience, and make a positive impact in their communities.
If you're interested in participating in a church summer internship program, read on for our comprehensive guide and some suggestions for where you can search for one.
What is a Church Summer Internship?
A church summer internship is a structured program that allows young adults to gain hands-on experience in various aspects of church ministry, such as worship, youth ministry, outreach, leadership development, and more.
Some churches may also offer internships where you can gain experience in marketing, business operations, filmmaking and production, project management, content writing, and additional tech, creative, and admin positions.
Participants typically work alongside experienced leaders and staff and receive training and mentorship. These programs vary in length, but most last for several weeks or months during the summer.
Benefits of Completing a Church Internship
An internship at a church can be a great way to connect with your faith while developing professional skills. Regardless of the career path you're looking to pursue, whether in or outside a church, the experience can be beneficial.
Personal and spiritual growth
By immersing yourself in a faith-based environment and engaging in ministry work, you can deepen your faith and develop a greater sense of purpose and direction.
Church summer internships provide valuable hands-on ministry experience, which can help you develop leadership, communication, and teamwork skills.
They can also allow you to explore potential career paths within the church. Whether you're interested in pastoral ministry, youth ministry, worship leadership, or any other area of church ministry, a summer internship can help you better understand what qualities it takes to succeed in these roles.
Internships, in general, are great ways to build professional relationships and connections that may benefit your future career.
These types of internships give you opportunities to serve your community through ministry work, outreach, or service. In addition to a positive community impact, you can also contribute to the church's mission.
How to Find Church Summer Internships
To find an internship program that aligns with your interests and goals, consider the following steps:
1. Reach out to your school's career services center - They may have a list of internships or be able to guide you to websites where you can research opportunities. They can also help you create or polish your resume and cover letter and prepare for interviews.
2. Utilize online resources - Besides job search websites like LinkedIn, Indeed, and GlassDoor, there are many online websites, organizations, online churches, and directories that list internships specific to Christianity or churches. Some to check out are:
- Church Staffing - Search for church positions and filter by location, type of job, and denomination.
- Christian Career Center - Search for Christian employers, ministry jobs, and church staffing opportunities.
- Ministry Source - A job board where you can find job opportunities posted nationwide.
- Christian Missionary Internships - Christian missionary internships and volunteering abroad for college credit.
- Focus on the Family - Internships for upperclassmen in marketing, counseling, radio broadcasting, and social media focused on developing leaders.
- Consortium of Christian Study Centers - Full-time, paid internships with locations across the U.S. and Canada.
3. Research churches in your area - Check out local churches that align with your faith and values and ask them about internship opportunities. You can research them online or in person.
4. Check with your denomination - If you belong to a specific denomination, check with your denomination's headquarters or website for information on available summer internship programs.
5. Ask at your church - If you're already involved in a church, ask leaders and staff if they know of any summer internship programs or if they can connect you with someone who does.
What to Look for in a Summer Internship Program
When searching for a summer internship, you can consider the following factors:
- Time - Are you looking for a full-time internship (40 hours) or only a part-time commitment?
- Location - Where is the internship? Are you looking to move away from home for the summer, or would you rather pursue a more local program?
- New skills - What skills will you get out of this internship? How do they align with your academic and career goals?
- Potential income - Is the internship paid or unpaid? How much income do you need or expect to make?
- Values and beliefs - Does the program and workplace culture align with yours?
- Type of work - What projects will you be working on? Will you be working with a team or individually? Are the projects aligned with your academic coursework or career goals?
Regardless of the major you're pursuing, church summer internships can be a great way to develop skills, talents, and experiences to add to your professional toolbox. They can also complement your studies and provide valuable knowledge outside of the classroom. So, don't wait - start applying to programs today!