Maximize your potential.

We believe that Christ is the hope of the world and that it is our responsibility to show the love of Jesus to everyone in our sphere of influence. This two-year, post-college residency is designed to partner with emerging leaders who know that they are called into full-time vocational ministry. As a cutting edge, leadership development oriented church, we are the perfect place to maximize your long-term ministry potential and equip you for vocational church ministry.


"I love the church, the atmosphere, and the leadership. During my senior year at Emory, I asked myself, “What’s Next?” After a bit, I then asked myself the question, “Why not Highlands?” After much prayer and guidance I took a leap of faith and began my journey to start the Residency Program at Highlands. At the time I didn’t know it but I can definitely say now it’s been one of the best decisions of my life. Not only was I learning about how to serve in a pastoral role, but I was developing real leadership qualities through practical experiences. Being mentored and loved from numerous individuals week in and week out is what I needed. I was challenged to be the very best leader I could be through the residency and I’m forever grateful.”

Brittney Gaines, 2015 Resident

Six Developmental Components

  • Ministry Experience - Ministry Experience is what the residency is all about. The purpose of the residency is to ensure that the residents have the leadership capacity and know-how to effectively and competently lead as a pastor. In order to do this, residents need significant and real-life ministry experience.

  • Leadership Coaching - Ministry Coaching works in conjunction with MinistryExperience (Developmental Component #1). Ministry Coaching also overlaps with Personal Development (Developmental Component #3). Two times per month the resident coach will meet one on one for at least 45 minutes to discuss ministry with the resident. The purpose of the Ministry Coaching Meeting is to ensure that the resident is growing in ministry competence during the residency.

  • Personal Development - Personal Development is similar to Ministry Coaching but is also quite different. Personal Development is more about who the resident is than what the resident does. Two times per month the resident coach will meet one on one for at least 45 minutes for personal development with each resident. The Purpose of this meeting is to ensure that the resident is growing as a person and Christian during the residency.

  • Leadership Training Curriculum - The Leadership Training Curriculum is unpacked during a weekly training meeting and gives valuable insight into different types of leadership. The Leadership Training Curriculum covers self-leadership, relational leadership, and organizational leadership. The Leadership Training Curriculum also has an “elective” quarter where the resident can learn about Pastoral Ministry, Preaching Ministry or Worship Ministry.

  • Winning Staff and Church Culture - Being part of a winning team is contagious. Residents benefit greatly from being invited into a staff and church culture that is thriving and healthy. Within this context, they pick up nuances and attitudes that separate winning teams from other teams.

  • Quarterly Evaluations - Each quarter a formal evaluation process gives feedback to the resident as well as to the resident coach about the residency and the resident’s readiness for pastoral ministry. While the evaluation process is an important tool in its own right, it also serves a “catch” for any development issues that have been inadvertently overlooked in the other components.

Interested in becoming a resident?

  • Start dates - March 1, June 1 , September 1 and December 1 each year.

  • Workload - Residents volunteer a total of 30 hours per week.

  • Stipend - Residents receive $500 per month financial assistance and $215 per month food allowance.

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