Some dreams take a long time to come true. When I first became Gateway’s president almost 20 years ago, one of my dreams was for every student to have an international missions experience while they were enrolled at Gateway. I even considered the idea of making this a requirement for graduation. Those were unrealistic expectations. We have so many different kinds of students in so many different kinds of programs, mandating something like this for every student was impractical.
So, the dream simmered. My zeal for getting more students exposed to international service remained strong. Over the years, ways to do this—not for every student, but for the majority of them—crystalized in my mind. And then, a few months ago, a friend approached us about funding an initiative which would expand our missions training program and give more students first-hand international experience. The dream was coming true.
Gateway has now received a major endowment gift to fund a new initiative—GoGrants. These grants will be available to any qualified Gateway student—defined as one who completes 20 credit hours at Gateway in a core program (masters/diploma), up to the time of their graduation. GoGrants will fund participation in a Gateway-sponsored trip which may also include academic credit. These trips will put hundreds of students on the front-lines of missionary service, working alongside field missionaries to share the gospel, start or grow churches, and develop more leaders.
We have two overarching goals for this program. First, we want more students to sense God’s call to international service and commit to becoming career missionaries. Second, we want all students to develop a deeper understanding of what missionary service entails and, if they remain stateside, become more passionate advocates for missions. By accomplishing either result, we know GoGrants will strengthen our overall commitment to the missionary task.
The donor couple who has made the initial gift has asked me to challenge other donors to join them in creating this fund. If you would like to discuss a contribution to GoGrants—making it possible for hundreds of Gateway students to have a hands-on mission experience—we would be delighted to hear from you. Reach out to Dr. Jeff Jones, VP for Advancement Services, and he will start the conversation—firstname.lastname@example.org.
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