How to get started in college ministry

We are committed to building a team of people from a variety of local churches who are willing to collaborate for the sake of the gospel on our campuses as opposed to competing for college students to be a part of a particular local church.

If you are a church or church leader looking to take the next step towards adopting a college campus follow these 5 easy steps: 

  1. Get connected with BCM Charleston via email, social media, and commit to joining a regular collaborative gathering of church leaders to intercede for lost college students in our city. 

  1. Reach out to a fellow pastor or church leader. Invite them to join the movement. 

  1. Pick a campus to adopt.

Each of our campuses are unique. As Chad Stillwell, the team lead for college ministry at the SCBC, said, “There is not a place in our State where we have two more diametrically different campuses than at the Citadel and C of C”. The rhythms, schedules, students, and worldview differences require us to develop different strategies to reach out to these campuses. As a result, we are asking our churches to begin their college outreach by focusing on one campus. The campus that you choose to adopt needs to be reflective of the people, time, and resources that your church is willing to leverage for the sake of students in our City. 


The College of Charleston:  

[invest where there is little gospel, working in the harvest and with students who have adopted a post-Christian worldview]

Churches who decide to adopt C of C must be willing to re-think a traditional ministry strategy. C of C is a campus with little regulated structure and is by far the most unengaged campus in our city for the sake of the gospel. Although there are dormitories on campus, C of C is a decentralized campus as many students who attend the college live off campus and have social lives that revolve around rhythms of the center city [by center city we mean the largely metropolitan area of the Pensuala from Market Street to Hwy 17]. Despite the lostness that is pervasive on campus, BCM firmly believes that a were a kingdom movement to happen on campus, that the reverberations of that movement would be felt across the center city. Churches that have solid missionary dna, that are willing to invest heavily in sowing seed, and have a harvest focus are ideal to work on this campus. 

The Citadel  

[invest, disciple, and work with students with clearly defined ministry objectives, times, and resources]

Churches that choose to adopt the Citadel need to consider a different approach to college ministry. The rhythms in place on campus make travel from campus for students incredibly difficult. For example, all freshmen are not allowed to leave campus during the week without special orders and are not allowed to have transportation making transportation arrangements necessary for church attendance on Sunday morning. The only cadets that can leave campus with a relative level of freedom are seniors, and even they have strict limitations on the amount of time they can spend off campus. 

Therefore, churches who wish to disciple and mentor cadets need to consider moving their ministry onto campus. There are two days during the week where all Cadets are required to set aside time for religious gatherings: Monday from 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm and Thursday from 5:45 pm - 8:00 pm. The benefit of adopting the Citadel is that BCM can provide all the access and connections required for your church to start small groups on campus, or partner with other churches to disciple Cadets. This makes the Citadel an ideal campus for churches to adopt with limited facilities or  that most people would consider to be too far from campus as the distance between the campus and your church is largely irrelevant with the exception of transportation on a Sunday morning. 

  1. Gather a team of people at your church who have the time, talent, and resources to invest in college students. 

  1. Commit to regular prayer for our campuses