SLU 101

About this trip

Student Leadership University 101 is a dynamic, 4-day conference in Orlando, FL.  The mission of SLU is “to develop and equip student leaders to Think, Dream, and Lead.”  Our attendance this year will be exploratory – we want to take a small group of students to investigate this trip and evaluate its benefits for future leaders within our own youth ministry.

Dates:  January 15-18, 2016

Times:  Flight times are TBA, but conference registration begins 1pm Friday and ends 12:30pm Monday.

What is included: (from

  • All-Inclusive 4-Day/3-Night Stay in a Business Hotel
  • Exclusive Behind-the-Scenes Experiences at Sea World
  • Rules and Tools of Leadership from World-Class Communicators
  • Worldview Development from Leading Christian Apologists
  • An Afternoon of Roller Coasters at Renowned Theme Parks
  • Business Leadership Lessons from Top Level Executives
  • Personality Assessment and Time and Goal Management

Why is this trip being offered?

This trip is an opportunity for students who are serious about leadership to learn some serious leadership skills through a strong, biblically-based organization.  Can’t they learn those skills in Maryland?  Well, yes and no.  Yes, we can teach many of the same principles; but no, they will not be taught in the same, immersive way.  Consider what will happen when we take this trip:

  • Our small group of students is part of a group of several hundred students who are hungry for leadership training. They will see and observe other leaders and influencers.  They will be immersed in a larger environment that is geared toward leadership.
  • The voices that the students will hear will be much different than my voice or your voice. I like my voice, but it talks too much.  Teens get to hear new people reinforce the truths we both have been teaching them.
  • The experiences the students will receive are different from what they will get locally. From top executives, gifted speakers, the conference environment, and Sea World, this trip will offer something much different from the norm.
  • The nature of a trip away means this will be immersive and a big deal. Instead of 90 minutes a month for leadership training we will have a few, long days.  We will get time to unpack what we are learning and talk about implementing it.  This same philosophy is why we go on retreats, camps, and mission trips.  The act of going away puts us in a different position and enables us to better receive training.

My goal for this trip is that students be given dynamic leadership lessons in a new environment that energizes them to use those leadership skills to impact the youth ministry as a whole.  That means the youth who go will have an opportunity to benefit all the youth in the ministry by utilizing what they have learned as servant leaders.

Who can go?

SLU Age Requirement.  For groups, SLU 101 allows youth who are EITHER 14 years old or older OR are in 7th grade or higher.  For parents of eligible youth on the younger end, I encourage you to consider whether your youth is ready for this or not.  It is an excellent opportunity, but it comes with the responsibility to be a self-motivated leadership learner.

RYM Application Requirement.  For interested youth, our only application requirement is that youth submit a paragraph or two – no more than a page – explaining why they want to attend this trip and what leadership lessons they hope to get from it.

Cost and due dates

The cost of the trip for groups is $595.  Our additional cost is airfare, which searches indicate to be between $200-$250.

October 11:   Initial $100 deposit and youth applications (see application requirement above) are due.  *Please note that we will be unable to refund deposits, per SLU’s refund policy.

October 25:  Pre-trip meeting during SS hour for all attending youth, with their parents.

November 1:  $200 payment

December 6:  $200 payment

January 3:  $150

January 15:  Final $45, plus airfare

Financial help and ideas

While we are committed to helping students attend trips, the nature of this trip is a bit different.  The church/youth ministry will be able to contribute up to $100 to any youth who commits to attending all Ignition monthly meetings (isolated exceptions granted by Minister of Students) and whose parents/guardians request assistance.  This assistance will not be available for the initial deposit.

If youth are interested, we can set up a few youth work days for members that allow members to donate money toward the trip.

Two ideas for raising additional funds:

  1. Distribute flyers in the neighborhood asking to do yard work or similar projects. People will be more likely to help you earn money if you:
    • Put what you are saving up for on your flyer
    • Hand deliver each flyer by knocking on doors and introducing yourself
  2. Tell extended family members that instead of Christmas presents this year you’d prefer money toward your trip.

More information

Download SLU’s conference pack to learn more: Conference Packet – SLU 101.  It contains a detailed sample schedule, dress code, what to bring, and more!  Technically, it’s meant for the group leader, but most of it is good for interested parents 🙂

Website design and development by Red Letter Design.