Bachelor of Biblical Studies

The Biblical Studies program is a four-year, 124-credit undergraduate program. It is designed to equip students with the analytical, exegetical, and theological tools necessary to interpret God’s Word responsibly. Some biblical programs deliver a pre-packaged theology to students, but we want to give students the skillset to dive into the text for themselves, learning how to make the Bible the point of departure for ethical and theological discussions. The Bible provides the moral values and ethical direction necessary to navigate our complicated world in a way that is pleasing to God.

A follower of Jesus must be biblically literate, and we believe biblical literacy requires a grasp of the entirety of God’s Word, not just portions of it. That’s why our program leads students through nearly every book of the Bible.

Our program seeks to produce action, not just knowledge. “Be doers of the word, and not merely hearers” (James 1:22). We work hard to show students how to practically apply the Bible in their own lives, teaching them to represent God’s character in a world of desperate need. By inviting students not just into a biblical education, but also a community of faith that collaborates in third world service, students learn that doing God’s will is a communal effort.

Bachelor of Community Development

Students often enroll in this program because they want to make a difference. Often, they’ve witnessed the devastating effects of poverty in the third world. They want to do something about it, something practical, something that will truly change lives for the better. Entering our program, students are often surprised to find that the Bible offers ways to address real-world problems people face around the world. Even in our Community Development classes, the Bible remains the main coursebook, being the standard by which we evaluate every development scheme or practice.

As a whole, development workers agree that people in the third world need things like clean water, access to quality education, and holistic health care. The real challenge is how these goals should be achieved. We reject the notion that sustainable development can be resolved by dumping Western money on the problem. We want students to approach issues with a more developed and complex methodology. When students think through education, for example, they can’t just be concerned with building a school building. They have to think about the whole paradigm of education, whether it actually teaches students to critically think about their world. There are no easy answers in development work. There are no quick solutions. We prepare students to face issues with knowledge, courage, persistence, and faith, knowing that true change can only occur with these characteristics at play.

Summer Internship

Summer Internship introduces students to our organizational goals and mission. Throughout the seven week duration, interns undergo an intensive biblical journey, made complete with real-time lessons in teamwork, cultural awareness, skills development, and learning one's identity in Christ. This includes Bible studies, cross-cultural and foreign language training, as well as exposure to community service and third world development paradigms taught at the Institute. Interns gain awareness to global issues and needs.

Summer Internship is integrated with our Institute undergraduate programs. Students must go on a summer internship within one year of their enrollment at the Institute, with the suggested option being the summer before school begins. The reason this is helpful is that it gives students a global awareness they can recall in the classroom. Our Institute is rigorous, and having seen the needs in the third world is both beneficial and recommended for success. The relationships built on internship--not only with peers, but also with leaders and teachers--offer a healthy start for a student’s experience with our ministry.

Summer Internship Application

 
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Immersion Trips

At the Institute, student don’t just learn about our third world development efforts in the classroom.  In addition to an initial seven week internship, three Immersion trips are built into the Institute curriculum. An immersion allows a student to thoroughly ‘immerse’ in a foreign culture, learning the language, customs and values of their host nation. In keeping with our organizational paradigm, these immersions happen in teams whereby students are challenged to think how they can improve the situation of the impoverished as a cohesive unit. These trips occur during Institute breaks, allowing students to go from field to classroom to field to classroom several times throughout their Institute journey. This not only keeps students sensitive to needs, but also keeps the classroom dynamic.

Immersion I has a culture and language emphasis that helps students learn more about the people and the region where they are serving. The immersions that follow continue to expand the students’ cross-cultural awareness and understanding, as well provide specific opportunities for them to implement their Biblical Studies and Community Development education. To ensure students have an effective experience on these trips, each trip has a corresponding Institute class to prepare them. These experiences help students understand our motto: “what we do here is what we do there,” by growing a student’s awareness of our organizational efforts both here and there.

 
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Study Abroad

After or near the completion of a students’ undergrad degree, they are often given the opportunity to continue their education by serving at one of our international locations (El Salvador, Uganda, India or the Philippines). While abroad, students are given the opportunity to implement their specialty focus while working full-time with our cooperatives in the region. Students are challenged to not just execute a plan, but live out the true test of a biblical education: character, displayed in patience, endurance, and hope--even in the midst of the most desperate situations.