Youth & Young Adult Ministry

Learn how to build gospel-centric relationships and ministries with teens

Bachelor of Arts (BA)
Bachelor of Arts/Master of Arts in Ministry (BA/MAM)

Study Youth & Young Adult Ministry at LBC

Sharing the Hope of Christ

During the crucial and formative period of adolescence, young people need Christian adults who will listen to them and care for them. At Lancaster Bible College, we develop youth ministry leaders who are passionate for God, who understand the unique needs and experiences of teens, and who are committed to guiding them on their journeys as disciples of Jesus Christ.

Through a robust and creative academic program, taught by faculty with extensive experience, students earning a youth ministry degree at LBC learn both the theoretical principles and practical leadership skills necessary to teach, disciple and lead young people in a variety of ministry contexts – like churches, parachurch organizations, camping ministries, college student ministries, community centers and more. Youth & Young Adult Ministry majors have to present or debate in every youth ministry course. We use the same presentation grading rubric from the first class to the last so that there is a consistency of expectation between all courses, no matter the faculty member. Students also complete practical and Bible-based assignments in every course to round out their degree in youth ministry.

Many of our youth ministry classes intentionally emulate the team-based work environments that equip students to be able to work well and lead in small and large leadership team contexts. Through a variety of fieldwork opportunities, students are equipped with the knowledge and skills needed to succeed as a youth ministry leader in the real world. Plus, our flexible programming allows student ministry majors to customize academic experiences by choosing from a variety of minors to help prepare for the unique ministry opportunities of the future.

All new youth ministry students are mentored by an upperclassman and take an introductory course which acquaints them with program expectations, future courses, other youth ministry students, alumni and local youth ministry leaders. Informal gatherings to read the Bible, eat a meal, or hang-out together, all work with department meetings to facilitate relationships which enhance classroom learning experiences.

So, if you’re passionate about making a spiritual impact in the lives of teens, consider studying youth ministry at Lancaster Bible College.

 Why Study Youth & Young Adult Ministry at LBC?

  • Enjoy a major that prepares you personally and professionally through academic rigor (head), spiritual formation (heart), and professional ministry experience (hands) in a variety of contexts.
  • Gain practical, hands-on experience through internships within a variety of local, regional, and national churches, parachurch organizations and youth work organizations.
  • Learn and apply the truths of the Gospel to your work, your life and your ministry.
  • Benefit from a broad regional network of youth ministry mentors and alumni.
Your Journey

Program Credits: 126

Locations: Lancaster


Bachelor Track:
Bachelor of Arts with majors in Youth & Young Adult Ministry and Biblical Studies
Four-Plus-One Track:
Bachelors of Arts in Youth & Young Adult Ministry and a Masters of Arts in Ministry

Here are some examples of internships completed by students in the past:

  • Senior High & Junior High Youth Ministry Interns in Local & Regional Churches
  • Director of After School Program in Urban Environments
  • Outdoor Recreation and Camping Ministry Intern


  • Traditional
  • Online & Evening (Adult Education)
  • Available as Minor

“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” – 1 Timothy 4:12

A Closer Look: Bachelor’s / Master’s Degree Option

bachelor's & master's degree track

Are you interested in eventually earning a Master’s degree? Why not get a head start with our 4+1 Degree option. Students majoring in youth & young adult ministry may choose to begin work on a Masters of Arts in Ministry Degree while pursuing their undergraduate studies. This unique option allows you to graduate with both a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Masters of Arts in Ministry degree in only five years.

Learn more about this track

Meet the Faculty


Ronald Belsterling, PhD

Professor, Youth & Young Adult Ministry Program Director

“Trusting Christ to guide and oversee the teaching-learning process, we hope to produce leaders who make disciples, bringing hope, peace, and joy to those to whom they minister.” — Dr. Belsterling

Read Bio

Dave Coryell, DMin

Adjunct Faculty

“You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems.” -James Clear

Read Bio

Sample Course Outline

CML 102 – Foundations of Ministry & Discipleship

This course introduces students to biblical and philosophical foundations of ministry by examining God’s global mission and our place as individuals and communities within His work. Particular attention will be given to how God’s people join with the Mission of God both locally and globally. Students will examine both their personal call to fulltime vocational ministry and healthy habits of discipleship and spiritual formation.

YMN 101 – Introduction to Youth and Young Adult Ministry

This course is designed to develop the academic, personal, and life management skills necessary for student success in an undergraduate program of ministry preparation. Students will identify their ministry goals, personal strengths, and areas for development. Students will gain an appreciation for the multifaceted process of training for vocational ministry and will develop key relationships with peers, academic advisors, and ministry practitioners.

YMN 110 – Adolescent Development in Culture

This course explores the physical, cognitive, moral, social and spiritual development of adolescents. Special attention will be given to variances between high and low culture, pop culture dynamics, macro, exo, and micro system influences, and teenage tensions related to the fluidness of technology and morality in today’s culture. Lectures and discussions will explore the relationships between adolescent development and culture and ensuing implications for valid ministry.

YMN 201 – Teaching Youth and Young Adults

This course is designed to help students develop skills in public speaking, curriculum planning, and small group facilitation within youth and young adult ministry contexts. Principles of interpretation (hermeneutics) and message-crafting (homiletics) will be taught and applied. Students will assess the spiritual and developmental needs of adolescents and produce lessons that are both faithful to the message of scripture and contextually applicable to youth and young adults in contemporary culture.

YMN 210 – Theological Foundation of Youth Ministry

This course provides an in depth look at the biblical, theological, historical, and philosophical foundations of Youth Ministry. Models and trends of youth ministry in Contemporary American church and parachurch contexts will also be examined. Special attention is given to the development of youth and young adult ministry mission statements, values, objectives, and strategy.

YMN 350 – Youth and Young Adult Ministry Internship

This course is an in-service program designed for the purpose of providing direct experience under the mentorship of a qualified professional. The internship is built on the educational principles of instruction, application, and evaluation, by placing students in a supervised period of learning in the context of actual ministry. This experience will enable students to grow in the understanding of their calling to ministry, personal leadership skills, and ability to analyze and evaluate objectively the effectiveness of their efforts. In addition, students profit from the evaluations of experienced professionals concerning their skills, attitudes, and understanding.

CML 330 – Discipleship Development in Camping Ministry

This course is designed to explore the making of disciples in a camping ministry setting. Through experience-based learning in the context of camping ministry, each student will learn basic principles about nature, personal worship, and outdoor living skills. Special attention will be given to personal formation balanced with the external skill sets needed to disciple effectively in a camp setting.

PCN 307 – Adolescent Therapy

The Adolescent Therapy course is designed to introduce students to the fundamentals of counseling adolescents. This course will address common issues facing the youth culture, development issues, approaches to counseling methods, and special topics pertaining to adolescents. In addition to assigned readings, class presentations and discussion of the outlined material, students will be afforded the opportunity to research and address issues of special interest to them.

YMN 401 – Adolescent Spiritual Formation

This course will develop skills in personal discipleship and leading discipleship movements in youth and young adult ministries. Biblical, theological, and philosophical foundations of spiritual formation are explored and various methods and models of discipleship are analyzed and applied. Particular attention is given to the spiritual formation of adolescents as students are equipped to lead discipleship and spiritual formation programs.

YMN 310 – Ministering to Families

This course will help students to understand family structures, become sensitive to varying family needs, and learn key approaches to providing ministry to families, both personally and programmatically in church ministry contexts.

A Closer Look: Youth & Young Adult Ministry

Carl Edwards.

Carl Edwards (’10): 2016 Distinguished Alumni Service Award Recipient

Carl Edwards is a proud graduate of LBC’s Church & Ministry Leadership department and currently serves the director of Cross Connection Youth Center in New Holland, Pennsylvania. “Handling the word is very important. I want to do justice to the text,” said Edwards of his ministry and education at LBC. “That was one of the biggest things to me – learning how to read the word, learning how to study it, looking it as literal text and applying it. Next is the relational side of ministry – that’s where disciples are made. LBC modeled that for me by having people who poured themselves into me.”

Careers and Jobs in Youth & Young Adult Ministry

  • Camping Ministry
  • Christian Education
  • College/Campus Ministry
  • Community Worker
  • Sports Ministry
  • Urban Youth Ministry
  • Youth Pastor
  • Youth Worker

What’s your next step?