Tomorrow's leaders

How Are Christian Colleges Preparing Tomorrow’s Leaders?

Going to college is more than getting a better job—it’s preparation for life. What makes Christian colleges unique in leadership development is how they train emerging leaders within the context of a Biblical worldview. They don’t just teach students how to lead others, but also how to treat people in a way that glorifies God.

In Christian colleges, leadership development is unique from other schools in three distinct ways.

1. Christ is the focus of our leadership.

In our highly competitive world, it’s easy to fall into a leadership style that places an overemphasis on winning. But a leadership model built on Christlikeness changes how leaders treat others. It places a high value on integrity and character. By using Christ as the center of the leadership model, both skill development and character development become the dual focus.

2. Opportunities often involve service

Leadership is not only about being in charge—it also involves serving others. Several Christian college programs exemplify this, including one at Calvin College. Students selected for their Leadership Fellows Program focus on renewal and restoration of our communities and address big issues like poverty, injustice, racism and materialism. The program, which includes a summer immersive experience, leadership courses, and a spring break service trip, teaches students how to serve others while learning about leadership.

3. Leadership opportunities at Christian colleges prepare students to be salt and light no matter what field they are in.

The world needs effective leaders in all fields. Many Christian colleges develop leadership skills through extracurricular programs. A Leadership Certificate program at Geneva College includes specific concentrations in adventure-based training, cross-cultural emphasis, health and wellness, or service and discipleship.

Another leadership program at Olivet Nazarene University equips juniors in high school with leadership skills through a summer immersive program that automatically enrolls students in a team building and leadership class that can be used towards a leadership minor.

Many other schools offer campus opportunities to lead groups through student life, service projects, mentoring and more. These opportunities give students the chance to develop leadership skills no matter what their major is. It prepares them to become Christlike leaders in our communities and abroad.

Sara Ward has a master’s degree in educational psychology and currently writes articles for businesses, educational groups and nonprofits across the web. She also writes a personal blog on faith, adoption and loss at

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