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Inviting Young people
In reply to: College Women in UMW — My name is Courtney Jones, and I'm Women's Division's Genie Bank Intern...
posted by CSJones on 9-May-2007  2:50 PM
I found this list of "Seventeen Ways to Welcome College Students", written by a Willamette University alum and the Wesley Foundation Director at University of Oregon.  It is written to help congregations welcome new college students who attend church, but I'm sharing it as a suggestion to get your creativity flowing for how UMW can do similar things to engage college women. I thought it might be helpful for those of you who are especially interested in working with college women. :)

  1. Make a point to meet and speak to college students when they come to church. Feeling welcomed is the #1 concern of students who attend a new church.
  2. Invite students to sit with you during worship so they don't sit alone.
  3. Treat a student to lunch after worship. Whether it be at home or a local restaurant, students will appreciate an invitation to talk and eat a meal that was not prepared at the dining hall.
  4. Bring extra food for after-church potlucks and invite the students to stay for lunch. Most students do not have kitchen facilities to prepare a potluck dish, but they want to participate in church activities.
  5. Make a personal phone call to a student who attends your church on Sunday morning, and answer any questions they may have about your congregation.
  6. Take a student for coffee during the week following their visit at church.
  7. Offer to drive students to worship.
  8. Send birthday cards, a bookmark, or words of encouragement throughout the year. Students love mail!
  9. Include college students on your Church Newsletter mailing list.
  10. Offer Sunday School classes on topics of interest to young adults.
  11. Organize a fellowship activity for college students.
  12. Present a plant to every new student who attends worship.
  13. Include students in worship, inviting them to read scripture, usher, or serve as a communion steward.
  14. Create "care packages" for students before finals week. Cookies, pens, sticky notes, highlighters, snack foods, and a slinky would be great gifts for stressed out students. Enclose a note wishing them well on their exams.
  15. Adopt a student for a year, inviting them to meals and calling to be sure they are all right.
  16. Include students in your family's holiday activities. Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter are hard times to be far away from home.
  17. Design a flier describing your local church and post it in the Student Union on campus. Be sure to include worship times and a map to your church

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