Who is eligible for Valley Leadership School?
- High school graduates or those who have obtained a GED
- Anyone between the ages of 18-24
- Anyone who is hungry for more of God and desires to be trained and equipped for life, ministry, or the marketplace. Students must have an eagerness to be transformed.
- Those who have a financial plan for paying their tuition in full by the final payment date.
When will Valley Leadership School Begin and End?
- VLS Move-in | mid-end of August
- Valley Leadership School Launch/Orientation | end of August, first week of September
- VLS Move-out | second or third Saturday of May
Is Valley Leadership School only for those going into full time ministry?
Absolutely not! Valley Leadership School is for EVERY 18-24 year old high school graduate who desires a deeper relationship with God and to do something BIG with their life for God.
Am I allowed to work while in Valley Leadership School?
Yes, students are allowed to work while in Valley Leadership School. However, the amount of hours recommended varies depending on which track the student is in. We encourage students taking college classes in addition to not work more than 10 hours a week due to their college, Valley Leadership School and internship responsibilities. However, every student is different and some can easily work more than 10 hours while going to college and doing VLS. The leadership track students (students who are not going to college classes) are encouraged to work no more than 30-35 hours a week so they are not overwhelmed with responsibility either.
What are students required to provide?
Each student must provide proof of health insurance upon arrival. Valley Leadership School is not responsible for a student’s hospitalization, doctor’s fees, or health related costs. A vehicle, although not required, is highly recommended as each student is responsible for their own transportation.
Where do students live?
One of the defining features of Valley Leadership School is that students live in an condominium community together with other VLS students of the same sex in a two bedroom/two bath apartment at Hunter's Ridge Apartments in Kalamazoo, MI. VLS rents out one entire apartment building just for VLS students at Hunter's Ridge. “Doing life together” is a phrase that summarizes the Valley Leadership School experience. From chapel, Bible classes, and internship experiences, to hanging at the house at night, students get to “do life together” with a bunch of crazy, fun-loving college-age students just like them who are passionate about pursuing God and making the most of their life.
Is financial aid available?
Every college track student must fill out a FASFA form to qualify for financial aid from the local universities, and 42% of KVCC (Kalamazoo Valley Community College) students receive some kind of financial aid. Sometimes student’s grants or loans supersede the cost of college tuition and those students are able to use money from their loan/ grant to pay for a portion of Valley Leadership School. Additionally, students can apply for the numerous scholarships available to college-age students - school counselors can help with this. Also, since VLS includes ministry training, many VLS students send out support letters to help raise money.
How do I apply to a local college?
The best way to apply to KVCC or WMU is to go to their website and apply online. We encourage students to start the application process as soon as possible. If students plan on attending KVCC, they will usually receive an acceptance letter within a week of applying. KVCC classes fill up very quickly, so we encourage students to apply, go through orientation, and register for classes as soon as possible. (Note: students can attend any college of their chose, but KVCC and WMU are the most common choices since they are both local in Kalamazoo)
When can VLS students take college classes?
Monday, Wednesday and Fridays are completely open in the VLS schedule. Therefore most students schedule M-W or M-W-F classes. Students also have Tuesday nights available for class if needed. VLS students in the college track are encouraged to take 12 credit hours per semester, but not required to.
How do I apply to Valley Leadership School?
Students can apply online (There is a $25 application fee if you apply after May 1), Pastoral Reference, Friend/Relative Reference, and photo must accompany all completed applications. Acceptance is based on a first come, first serve basis.
Does Valley Leadership School take a mission trip over Spring Break?
Yes, every spring break Valley Leadership School students participate in a Beach Reach Mission Trip in Panama City Beach, FL.. VLS students team up with 200 other Christian college students nation wide who serve and minister to their peers over spring break by giving free van rides and witnessing on the streets at night and serving free pancakes every morning. This is a life-changing trip that will rocks students’ world, increases their passion for the lost, and challenges their boldness. The cost of this trip is not included in the VLS tuition. Students are expected to either send out support requests or raise money - the trip usually costs around $800.
Also, every other year, students are given the option to take a international mission trip instead of the Beach Reach mission trip. In the past this international mission trip has gone or Guatemala or Mexico. This trip is usually around $1,800 and is not included in the cost of VLS tuition either.
Are there rules in Valley Leadership School?
The one overarching "rule" or expectation in VLS is that students desire intimacy with Jesus and growing in their faithfulness to live their life according to the Word. The goal of Valley Leadership School is heart transformation, not behavior modification. Therefore, to help students live a life honorable to the Lord, there are some broad guidelines to promote a healthy culture that cultivates genuine spiritual growth. Some of these guidelines include a curfew of 1am, boundaries of being alone in a home with the opposite sex, and not consuming media that is crude or ungodly. Again, the heart of the program is to develop a genuine and authentic relationship with Jesus, the broad guidelines are secondary to the primary goal of heart transformation.