The scholarship means Lauren is now nearing the end of the first semester of a Graduate Certificate in Theology, specialising in Youth and Campus Ministry, with The Broken Bay Institute (BBI) and the University of Newcastle. Because BBI is a leader in online courses, Lauren is doing her studies from the convenience of her home in Rockhampton.
“I’ve been finding the online study is really great,” Lauren says. “The amount of information and new learning I’m receiving is phenomenal. It’s definitely giving me a lot more confidence and a deeper understanding of where my faith comes from.”
Lauren has been working for the Rockhampton Diocese for about 18 months, having previously worked with the Townsville diocese and with the Young Christian Students movement. Her work with the youth ministers and young people across the vast Diocese of Rockhampton takes her from the beautiful central Queensland coast to the Northern Territory border in outback Australia.
“It’s the hands-on work with young people, on camps and retreats that I enjoy. To see the transformation that takes place in them over that week that they’re on camp is so fulfilling. That gives me a lot of confidence and it means you know you’re doing the right thing.
“And then to have them say, as one boy in particular did, that he’s going to go off from the camp and find his faith because he knows now how important faith is, that’s just fantastic.”
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Inaugural National Youth Ministry scholarship (Broken Bay Institute)