Utah is known for its large population of followers of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. According to data from the Pew Research Center, 73% of adults in the state are Christian, more than half of whom identify as Mormon. Of these Christian adults, 58% consider religion "very important," and 53% attend religious services at least once a week.
Within this religious landscape, Utah is home to several Christian colleges, including Brigham Young University, which is owned and operated by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. For students wishing to actively practice their faith, a Christian college can offer the benefit of excellent education, along with a sturdy foundation of religious or spiritual values not offered through secular colleges. Christian colleges often encourage, or sometimes require, students to attend religious services to foster a campus-wide religious community. With students and professors sharing the same values and beliefs, the environment found at Christian colleges in Utah can foster the growth of a student's spiritual relationships, both with other people and with God. Online learning continues to grow in popularity for students across the country. Many universities devote time and resources to advancing their web-based delivery of educational programs, and colleges in Utah are no exception. Students of Utah colleges may find additional spiritual, financial, and personal benefits to their higher education journey by enrolling in online programs. Most importantly, these programs offer scheduling flexibility. With courses often delivered in an asynchronous format, students can work from the comfort of their own homes and within the confines of their own schedules. This is especially convenient for students with work, family, or church commitments.
73% of adults in the state are Christian, more than half of whom identify as Mormon. Pew Research Center
Online Christian colleges in Utah integrate faith and higher learning in the same way as their on-campus counterparts. Students can expect to receive the same faith-based curriculum without needing to commute to class or pay for on-campus accommodations. Additional features of online Christian colleges may include online spiritual counseling services, live streams of campus worship services, and an offering of forums or online groups where students can connect outside the classroom. Choosing which college to attend is one of the most important decisions a person can make. Prospective students must consider many factors when researching colleges in Utah. For Christian students seeking a Christian college, however, several factors may stand out above the rest, including campus size, values, program offerings, and online resources. While larger schools often receive more attention and recognition, smaller campuses allow for a more interpersonal, communal feel among both students and staff. The low student-to-faculty ratio also allows for one-on-one facetime with professors. The campus values of Christian colleges in Utah will often prohibit the use of drugs and alcohol, may prohibit co-ed housing, and may require chapel attendance or community service projects. Students should examine their own priorities and values to find the college that supports their personal values. While some students seek a ministry-focused education, others may prefer a degree based in the liberal arts. Examining each school's program catalog will help you determine the best setting for your educational needs.
Online Christian colleges in Utah integrate faith and higher learning in the same way as their on-campus counterparts.
Seminary Schools vs. Bible SchoolsTo make the most effective choice between various Christian colleges in Utah and throughout the U.S., it is important to distinguish between seminary schools and Bible colleges. Each of these religious institutions foster different outcomes in their students' lives and careers. While seminary prepares individuals for service in ministry leadership roles, such as pastors, missionaries, and spiritual counselors, Bible colleges provide an undergraduate education with the curriculum largely based on the Bible. Unlike liberal arts schools, Bible colleges may emphasize courses like youth ministry, the Old and New Testaments, and other Biblical study, rather than on math, sciences, or the arts. Although both Bible colleges and seminary schools can advance one's faith and ministry, students should examine their personal goals in order to determine which educational path best fits their needs.
Accreditation for Christian CollegesProspective students should research a school's accreditation when selecting a college or university. The accreditation status of a school ensures higher educational standards, determines financial aid availability, and may determine which credits transfer from one school to another. There are various types of accreditation agencies: those with regional jurisdiction, those with national jurisdiction, and accrediting organizations of a specialized nature, such as religious accrediting bodies.
Regional accreditation, the most popular and widely respected, is the primary accrediting method of public schools and universities, while national accreditation often goes to for-profit schools or schools with specialized curricula, including a number of Christian colleges. Some Bible colleges do not apply for accreditation, and thus cannot accept federal financial aid. However, other specialized accrediting agencies exist, such as the Association for Biblical Higher Education. This specialized accrediting body, for example, focuses on standards where "the Bible is central and the development of Christian life and ministry is essential." The U.S. Department of Education offers a helpful database of accredited postsecondary programs and institutions. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Utah boasts a very low unemployment rate at 3.1%, lower than the national unemployment rate of 4.1%. With such a positive job outlook, graduates should find a favorable environment for employment. The average hourly wage among all occupations in Utah comes out to $22.13, with the average total salary at an annual gross total of $46,460.
The accreditation status of a school ensures higher educational standards, determines financial aid availability, and may determine which credits transfer from one school to another.
Currently, the fastest growing industries in the state remain science-based, including veterinary medicine, statisticians, and biomedical engineering. Other industries with significant growth projections over the next decade are healthcare, finance, and computer technology. The table below lists a series of employment data for jobs in the community and social service industries, including social workers, counselors, and therapists. This data features the number of positions currently filled in the state and average hourly and annual earnings for employees.
The fastest growing industries in Utah are veterinary medicine, statisticians, and biomedical engineering.
|Occupation||Employment||Average Hourly Wage||Average Annual Wage|
|Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselors||2,340||$32.29||$67,160|
|Marriage and Family Therapists||310||$25.84||$53,740|
|Mental Health Counselors||2,340||$32.29||$67,160|
|Child, Family, and School Social Workers||2,420||$20.35||$42,320|
|Healthcare Social Workers||1,140||$28.47||$58,590|
|Social and Human Service Assistants||5,840||$13.32||$27,710|
|Directors, Religious Activities and Education||40||$19.27||$40,070|
WMU Foundation Scholarships Varies
U.S. Army Reserve Chaplain Candidate Scholarship $3,500
FTE Fellowship for Doctoral Students of African Descent $20,000
Richard S. Smith Scholarship $1,000
The Christian College Connector $2,000
Scholarships for Utah Residents
Horatio Alger Association Scholarship $10,000
Daniels Fund Boundless Opportunity Scholarship Varies
Daniels Fund Scholarship Varies
Utah New Century Scholarship $1,250
Utah Regents Scholarship $400-$1,000
Find a Church in Your CommunityA church community can be one of the most supportive environments for students enrolled in or entering college. Whether seeking to join a church near your home or near your future campus, websites like Church Finder and USA Churches prove useful in finding the right fit for you.
Get ConnectedStudents may also connect with others through Christian networking websites. These social sites can help like-minded individuals find job opportunities, friendship, and a support system.
- The Christian Business Network This site connects Christian business professionals from across the globe. Exclusive resources, networking services, and content management await accepted applicants.
- myPraize This ad-free social network mirrors Facebook, YouTube, and other popular social media sites. With a feature to import your profile, media, and friends from Facebook, it's easy to start connecting.
- ChristianJobs.com Dedicated to connecting believers in the business world, this site features job listings for ministry-related positions throughout the world. It also offers career tools, such as resume assistance and career coaching.
Find Christian MinistriesOften private institutions, non-accredited, or otherwise limiting the eligibility of financial aid, attendance at Christian colleges can be difficult for some students to afford. In this situation, students may find a workable alternative by enrolling in a public, non-Christian school in Utah and joining an on-campus ministry.
- Campus Crusade for Christ Located on more than 2,300 college campuses, CRU offers spiritual guidance, resources, and programs including on-campus Bible studies and off-campus retreats.
- Chi Alpha Despite the Greek name, Chi Alpha is not a fraternity or sorority. The organization transforms universities through bringing students to Jesus Christ.
- International Fellowship of Evangelical Students Local, student-led chapters of IFES engage at the university level, community level, and global level through evangelism and leadership development.
- Fellowship of Christian Athletes FCA brings together students' passion for athletics and faith. By ministering first to coaches and their families, FCA engages and empowers athletes in their activities and their lives.
- Catholic Campus Ministry Association CCMA connects, engages, and equips campus ministers with the knowledge and tools to promote the mission of the Church at university campuses.
- Lutheran Student Movement U.S.A. LSM-USA is a student-led movement supported by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America with campus members throughout its breakdown of thirteen regions in the country.
- Reformed University Fellowship In addition to student leaders, RUF helps ordained ministers serve on college campuses. Programs include large group meetings, small Bible studies, one-on-one meetings, and service opportunities.
- UKirk UKirk provides professional support and development for individuals engaged in campus ministry, including ministry leaders, supporters, and advocates. Resources are shared through the site's online network.
- Baptist Collegiate Ministry Life BCMLife is composed of a network of campus groups, church groups, and campus churches, developing and leading ministry efforts for college students.
Public Universities in Utah with Christian Ministries
- Utah State University: Utah State University's main campus in Logan has chapters of the Baptist Collegiate Ministry Life. The campus minister, Mickey Porter, can be contacted via email.
- University of Utah: Salt Lake City's University of Utah has a membership group of Chi Alpha. Small student groups meet weekly for worship, including ministry groups from RUF and CRU.
- Dixie State University: Located in St. George, Dixie State University offers campus ministry held by members of CCMA from the local Saint George Catholic Church.