Student Life Director

ChadDr. Chad Cooke

I am a licensed counselor and an ordained pastor. I have been afforded the opportunity to serve in a variety of counseling and ministry settings. One of my greatest joys is to sit with and encourage teenagers. I love to try and connect with them, understanding where they are and pointing them to where God wants them to be. My passion is to see students find true and lasting worth in the only place it ultimately can be found–in the person of Jesus Christ. So many other alternatives are available for students to place their value, significance and worth. Every option besides faith in Christ is not a permanent, sure foundation. I find great joy in pointing them to a vertical worth that is found in knowing God and resting in Him for ultimate value, worth and significance. In addition, I am a husband to Holly and dad to three active, energetic young boys.

Our mission is to cooperate with the Spirit of God in leading students to Christ, building students up in Christ, and equipping students to serve Christ for the good of others and for the glory of God.

Leading students to Christ

Our students come from a variety of backgrounds and experiences. Some of our students have been active in church their entire lives and some have no church experience at all. Our students come to us from a variety of denominational backgrounds. Our aim is to meet students where they are and, empowered by the Spirit of God and enabled by the grace of God, we seek to point them to where God wants them to be. Every student is an individual created in the image of God with innate dignity and worth (Gen 1:26-27). And, every student, because of sin, is separated from God and in need of a mediator. It is our joy to lead students to Jesus Christ, the only sufficient mediator between God and man (2 Cor 5:21). We believe students are genuinely happy and most fully able to flourish when they rest in God and in His will for their lives.

We recognize the numerous demands and pressures that face middle and high school students. From academics, to peer relationships, to family dynamics, to physical changes, to questions related to identity and self worth, and beyond: we realize teenagers face numerous challenges. The staff and volunteers who are a part of Student Life seek to recognize the reality of these challenges and speak the transforming power of Jesus Christ into these various life issues. We meet with students both formally and informally, caring for them and connecting them to the hope, joy, and peace found in Jesus Christ.

Building students up in Christ

The gospel is something we talk about all the time. The good news of the gospel is not only the news that saves us but it is also the glorious news that changes us and transforms us more and more into the image of Christ. Therefore, in our chapel services, Bible studies and discipling opportunities, it is our goal to demonstrate for students the various facets of gospel truth. We want them to see the full beauty of all that God has done for them in Christ. It is only a grand, captivating view of God that will lead to long-term, sustaining obedience in the right direction. Both cheap grace and legalism are poor motivators for long-term, sustaining faith. A vision of the costly grace demonstrated most clearly in the cross of Christ is the fuel that sustains and that God uses to fan the flame of faithfulness. This is what we hope to point students to over and over again.

Various opportunities are provided for students to grow in their understanding of God’s Word, in their understanding of the gospel, and in their understanding of what it means to be a faithful follower of Christ. Chapel services, student led Bible studies, gender specific discipleship groups, mentoring, and leadership development opportunities are all means by which we seek to build students up in Christ.

Equipping students to serve Christ

Not only do we desire to see students come to know Christ but for students to serve Christ. From chapel worship, to school clubs and teams, to the local community, to the local church, to missions opportunities on the local, state, national and global level, students are provided numerous opportunities to demonstrate their faith in action. They are provided opportunities to glorify Christ by proclaiming Him and making Him known.

As we provide opportunities for students to serve and to go it is our hope that God opens their eyes to see the global, grand vision of God for peoples of every tribe and language and people and nation (Rev 5:9). Students during their senior year participate in KIP (Kommunity Impact Project). This consists of thirty hours serving and investing in the local community and the local church.