Encouragement for College Students

written by Haley King, Children & Family Ministries Coordinator (August 27, 2022)

col·lege /ˈkälij/  noun: an educational institution or establishment, in particular one providing higher education or specialized professional or vocational training.

The definition of college seems pretty straight forward. Yes, while higher education and pointed training towards your career are so important in your college years, they are not all that matters. College is the first time you are beginning to cope without mom and dad. It is when you are surrounded by hundreds of people but somehow you still feel so lonely at times. It is a time for you to learn life skills and build character as you navigate things like time management and push through tough relationships/friendships. You could say it is when you either flight or fight. 

Through this blog post I want to encourage you to fight. Meaning, push through those tough moments of stress, fear, and loneliness. Push yourself out of your comfort zone to find a community. Get involved in a church or a college small group. Sign up for things that interest you. Get involved. These next four years have the power to alter your life forever. You might have to change your major five times. You might find your spouse. Hey some of you might be married before you even graduate. My point is, God has designed each of you with different talents and desires and He desires to use these next four years to shape you into the man or woman He wants you to be for His Kingdom. Don't let the set backs discourage you but let me motivate you to grow through it. Jeremiah 29:11 says “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” 

Coats Baptist wants to welcome you and encourage you as you seek out the plans that the Lord has for you! Members of Coats Baptist and former college students have taken the time to write some tips, advice and encouragement for you, college student, as you start this new year! 


“Being in a new place can be tough but try your best to get plugged in! There are more people than you think ready to meet you and support you.” - Staci Smith, College Small Group Leader

“The best advice I received when going to college was to treat each day like a 9-5 day job. This means going to class, studying, writing papers, doing projects all within these hours Monday through Friday. This is a sure way to succeed academically and allows time to get involved in a local church. Church community has so many benefits to everyone. Belonging to a church family creates lifelong friends, an opportunity to serve and love others and accountability. Last but certainly not least, seek godly mentors. We need someone to discuss issues college students face today. Separating truth from emotion, debunking cultural lies, maintaining correct doctrine and defending our faith are all things we could gain from a Godly mentor and community of friends at church.” - Melissa Dailey, Campbell Alumni & Coats Baptist Member

“Remember to bring a jacket to the library and drink lots of Creek Coffee!” - Bryan Sanders, Campbell Alumni, College Small Group Leader 

I would challenge an incoming student to look into their future. What do you desire your life to look like in five years… or ten? Do you envision your optimal future to include long-term friendships with people of strong values and morals… relationships or marriage based on kindness, selflessness, and Godly character… a virtuous, fulfilling career and positive accomplishments… a family focused on loving and serving one another. In other words, does your future include relationships and achievements based on biblical values and principles? Do you desire Godly direction and blessing on your future? If so, I would challenge you to pursue and remain consistent with your relationship with CHRIST throughout these upcoming years. The college environment will offer independence and opportunities that can critically harm the optimal future you have envisioned for yourself. These next few years should be about enabling the best for your future. That can only be done through a close, intentional relationship with CHRIST. And it can be much easier when you walk that path with others that share those same goals, and can challenge and encourage you.” - Kenny Milton, Campbell Alumni, Coats Baptist Member, Host of College Small Group


Coats Baptist Church would love to be the church you choose to be a part of! Join our College Small Group as we study through books of the Bible. We meet every Monday night at 7pm. (Dinner is always provided) 

Sign up to be a part of our Adopt-A-Camel program where CBC families want to connect with and support you, offering a home away from home. 

You can find more info on college small group, Adopt-A-Camel, and our core values on our website at coatsbaptist.com/college.