College can be a difficult time of releasing your student to start making their own decisions. At CU, we often hear parents wonder how to support their students’ newfound autonomy, particularly in the space of faith. How can you encourage your student as you trust them to start making more and more decisions on their own?
That’s why we’ve created this list of the ways CU cultivates students’ faith so their heart, mind, body and soul are fully developed upon graduation. After all, your student’s first year of college is a huge milestone! By focusing on these five things, we hope you can enjoy this big step in their life and trust the work God is doing in their heart.
1. MAKING FAITH THEIR OWN
At college, your student is going to meet Jesus in brand new ways, and some of those experiences are going to differ from your faith experience. That’s okay. In Scripture, we see God moving people toward Himself over a period of time, stirring the hearts of younger generations in fresh ways that promote justice, forgiveness, love and reconciliation. As your student shares their faith highs and lows, remember to trust the Holy Spirit’s presence in their life. Listen to what matters to your student; be kind and curious; offer encouragement.
At Cornerstone, we bring an intentional focus on faith formation to our curriculum to help guide students through their faith journey. All students participate in a year-long program called Terra Firma, where they identify the unique ways God is calling them into the world through service, discussion of global issues, skill development and student empowerment. In addition, our Virtue Project instills a strong sense of character in our graduates. We give each student a strong foundation to face doubts in their faith and grow through those doubts.
2. BLESSING BIBLICAL APPLICATIONS
The college classroom offers your student the opportunity to connect Scripture with every aspect of their education. At Cornerstone, all of our courses center on a Christian perspective of reality, and our professors encourage students to apply their faith in both practical and thoughtful ways. Here, students think about real-world concerns through a biblical lens.
That’s one of the things we value at Cornerstone, which is why we encourage students to blend faith and the classroom together in service initiatives across the globe. At CU, we yield thoughtful and empowered Christ-followers, helping students not only own their faith, but also live it.
3. SUPPORTING DISCIPLESHIP
When it comes to faith, we all are constantly learning and growing and changing. That means we all benefit from the voice of a faith mentor. The same holds true for your student as they leave for college. At Cornerstone, we want your student to feel supported and encouraged in their faith. That’s why all our faculty and staff profess a personal relationship with Jesus. The shared faith of our community helps to create a culture of mentorship across campus. With a focus on relational learning, our faculty take time to engage your student in the kinds of deep conversations that not only grow their self-understanding but also grow their impact for the kingdom of God.
4. ENCOURAGING RISK
Part of a vibrant faith walk involves trusting God in contexts outside your comfort zone. College should help facilitate those experiences in safe, thoughtful and meaningful ways. At CU, we exist to bring hope to the oppressed and measureable change to the way the world works. We exist to make life better, not for ourselves, but for the planet, and we connect every student with the opportunity to pursue that kind of work while here. We find that as students are drawn outside of familiar spaces, they also are drawn deeper toward the heart of God.
5. CREATING TRUST AND SAFETY
When it comes to supporting your student’s faith walk during this next season of their life, we want you to know they are attending a school that cares for their well-being in every way: spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically. In addition to the culture of discipleship and biblical formation fostered at Cornerstone, CU offers The Well where students can receive one-on-one counseling care throughout their college journey. Cornerstone is also ranked as one of the safest colleges in America (Niche, 2018). We’re supporting your student in all the ways that matter, so you can feel confident supporting them from home.
COLLEGE IS ABOUT MORE THAN A DEGREE
At Cornerstone, knowledge is about more than memorizing facts. Here, students develop a deeper understanding of people, life and God. They conquer challenges, grow in wisdom and make more memories than they can count.