Student Leadership Conference

360 Student Leadership Conference

"Our students were blown away by the quality of speakers and ideas at the TIU 360 Conference! spending time with leaders who are making real change in the world challenged and inspired our student-leaders, which has proven to be blessing to our entire student ministry." — Adam Mearse, Naperville Church of Christ, Naperville, IL

"I love bringing students to the TIU 360 conference for many reasons. I know that my students are going to have a great time, get exposed to a great Christian college campus, and also be challenged about what it means to follow Christ. I also really appreciate that the conference has events planned just for leaders. On top of that, Katherine and her crew make the registration process very easy. They put so much thought and work into the weekend that it doesn't take much of either from me to enjoy the conference with my students. I am planning on making this conference an annual event for my students and I want to get other teachers involved from my school so we can bring more students next year!"
— Christian Arvold, HOPE Christian High School, Milwaukee, WI

TIU 360 Conference 2015

Want to grow in leadership and have a blast at the same time? Join us for the TIU 360 Conference!

The annual TIU 360 Conference is designed for high school students to engage with each other as they learn about leadership and their relationships with God. Students will be challenged to think deeply about what Scripture says about leadership and how it applies to their lives. Our hope is that students will leave the event with a better understanding of who God is, what their individual leadership skills are, and how God will use them as leaders wherever they are in life. There is also a track for youth pastors in attendance. Workshop content and networking opportunities make this a great event for youth pastors as well as students.

Individual Registration           Group Registration


This year's conference will be held: Friday-Saturday, April 17-18, 2015

Main Speaker: Manny Scott

By age 16, Manny’s story was almost over:
His father was incarcerated, he missed 60-90 days of school annually from 4th to 9th grade, he dropped out of school at age 14, he lived in 26 places by age 16, and his best friend was brutally murdered. Sensing that the end of his life was near, Manny sat down on a park bench, and considered how he would make others feel the depth of despair and anger roiling in his soul. He says, “When I look back, I now see that I was heading down a path that would have destroyed me.”

Then, a man—a complete stranger—took a risk, and sat down beside Manny. That man connected with him, encouraged him, and inspired him to write a different story—to create a new life. Manny heard that man say, in essence, “Just because you live in the hood, the hood doesn’t have to live in you;” “You can’t control what happens to you, but you can control your response;” “You can become the father you never had, and the man you’ve never met;” and, “You can create a future better than your past.”

That day, on a park bench, Manny Scott turned the page. He returned to school with a new attitude and purpose, and ended up in the back of Erin Gruwell’s English class—a group now known worldwide as the Freedom Writers, portrayed in the 2007 hit MTV movie.

In his journal, Manny began writing—and dreaming about—new, more fulfilling chapters in his life—chapters filled with healing, hope, perseverance, and possibility.

Through very hard work, and with the help of others, Manny has achieved many of those journaled dreams.

He is now happily married, a doting father of three, a successful entrepreneur, a Ph.D. student, and one of the nation’s most sought after speakers.

Stay tuned for the full schedule and workshop details.

Youth Pastor Session Speakers // Adam Mearse & Donald Guthrie

Adam Mearse has been working in student ministry for 16 years in Japan, Oklahoma, and now in Naperville, IL. After his undergraduate work in psychology and biblical studies, he completed Master’s degrees in ministry and counseling and is currently in the final stages of his PhD work in education at TIU. Following his PhD, Adam hopes to pursue training in auto mechanics (seriously). Adam lives in the western suburbs with his wife Christina and their three children.  They are “that family” that eats organic food and brings quinoa to potlucks.

Donald Guthrie, prior to joining the TEDS faculty, worked in campus ministry for twelve years with the Coalition for Christian Outreach and served on the faculty of Covenant Theological Seminary. During his fifteen years at Covenant, he directed the Field Education, Doctor of Ministry, and Distance Learning programs and also served as Vice President for Academics. Dr. Guthrie is a member of the North American Professors of Christian Education and has enjoyed serving as a ruling elder in several local churches over the past twenty-five years. He is a frequent teacher at conferences and retreats, often addressing cultural trends, intergenerational ministry, calling and vocation, and adult learning. He and his wife, Mary, have two young adult children.

2015 Conference Schedule

Friday, April 17, 2015
Time Event
4:00–5:45 pm Check-In (Waybright Center Lobby)
5:45–6:45 pm Dinner
6:45–7:00 pm Break
7:00–8:30 pm Main Session I
8:30–8:45 pm Break
8:45–10:00 pm Friday Night Frenzy*
10:00 pm–12:00 am TIU Coffee House
Saturday, April 18, 2015
7:30am Luggage Rooms open
8:00–8:30 am Breakfast
8:30–10:00 am Main Session II
10:00–10:15 am Huddle Time
10:30–11:20 am Workshop 1
11:20 - 11:30 am Break
11:30 am - 12:20 pm Workshop 2
12:20–1:25 pm Lunch
1:25–2:15 pm Workshop 3
2:15–2:30 pm Break
2:30–4:00 pm Main Session III
4:00–6:00 pm Art from the Heart: CAUSEGEAR
6:00 pm Students Picked up Outside the Meyers Sports Complex
*Bring active wear and warm clothes for this outdoor activity, weather permitting.

Parents: If you need to reach your child while at the conference and are unable to reach them directly, please call emergency number at 847-317-6401.

Workshop Sessions

During the conference, you will have the opportunity to supplement the Main Sessions with more specific topics tailored to what interests you most! A few sessions from the 2014 conference included:


An International Education: Pathways to cross-cultural, multicultural, and transcultural leadership
Engaging with Culture: How to stand up for what you believe in without making people feel judged

Professional Skills:

Putting Your Best Self Forward
Finding Career Directions


The Integration of Faith and Sports
The 5 Practices of Authentic Community: The power of your small group to change lives

Spiritual Life:

The Pace of a Leader: Slowing down the speed of life so you can walk with Jesus
The Leader’s Devotional Life


Receive a free CAUSEGEAR bag just by coming to the conference. On Saturday afternoon you will have the opportunity to paint it however you like at the Art from the Heart Party!


The price for attending the 2-day conference is:

This fee includes meals, lodging, CAUSEGEAR bag, and conference t-shirt. Group registration is available to groups of 10 or more. Groups will receive a $10 discount per registration off the current list price! One group leader will be admitted free with a group of 10 or more students.

Group Registration

Have a group of 10 or more looking to join us at the TIU 360 conference? If so, youth leaders can attend for free and all students in the group receive a discount of $10 off registration!

Individual Registration           Group Registration


For questions regarding the overall conference, please contact Katherine Jeffery at or 847-317-7032.

For questions regarding conference registration, please contact Brittany Niequist at or 847-317-7150.

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Plan Ahead!

If you are a youth leader, start planning ahead now to bring your whole youth group to a TIU 360 Leadership Conferences in the future. If you will still be in high school next year, you can start planning ahead on how to invite all of your friends to a TIU 360 Leadership Conference too! Either way, the dates are as follows:

Future Dates
April 15-16, 2016

Kingdom Impact Grant Opportunity

Trinity International University is pleased to offer Kingdom Impact Grant opportunities for qualified students who demonstrate vision in a particular area of service. The purpose of Kingdom Impact Grants (sponsored by Trinity International University) is to empower high school youth to plan, conduct, and evaluate a service project that promotes human flourishing in God’s kingdom. Learn more