Fall Semester Kick-Off Strategies

Gary Stidham Campus Minister, University of Texas, Arlington

The first 3-5 weeks offer a unique opportunity with new students that will not be duplicated at any other time during the school year.

They are open.

They are looking for friends.

They are used to filling out forms.

Good summers make great falls.

Plan events, make reservations, print promotional materials, write curriculum, sign student leaders up to staff outreaches, etc.

EVERYONE on campus needs to know you are there.  VISIBILITY!

Much of what we do visibly during the first two weeks will determine what kind of people and how many people join in with us.

There is no substitute for person to person contact.  Follow-up every student you engage.

People become involved in your ministry more through meaningful relationships than events and   promotion.

They are asking, “Are these the kind of people I want to be involved with?”

Throw unforgettable events!

Gear your first meetings to the first-time guest.

Practice the full calendar principal.

Keep a written or electronic calendar and fill in the time with high priority areas such as leadership meetings, appointments, ministry events.

Plan out your entire time in advance so you are spending time doing what’s important and you are getting adequate rest and time with God.

Expect to be tired but know it is worth it.

Commit to be disciplined with your time.

This isn’t the time to renew long lost friendships or join new clubs.

Walk with God, pray hard, and enjoy yourself!

No matter how urgent the hour, Jesus’ words still ring true, “…apart from Me you can do nothing.”

Enjoy the process, laugh.

(Portions adapted from Campus Crusade for Christ, “Eight Principals for the first three Weeks”.)

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