Union Baptist prepares next generation for work force

Union Baptist prepares next generation for work force
June 28
05:00 2018

Union Baptist Church has been investing in the lives of the next generation for at least the past three years, when the church began its internship program. The church has brought in college students for the internship program, which is designed to give the young men and women a taste of the real world.

The program began with Bishop Sir Walter Mack Jr., senior pastor of Union Baptist, mentoring his nephew over the summer as a means to give him something to do until his nephew returned to college that fall.

“He did such a tremendous job with us, we decided to expand it to involve other young people, not only in our church but outside of the church as well,” said Mack.  “Since that time, it has been a phenomenal experience with tremendous growth and development by the young people.”

According to Mack, the program is designed to give college students an opportunity to be “shaped and developed” by the church for business success.  Mack stated he wanted to have a program like this to also make sure the church stays invested in the children’s lives even after they leave for college.

“We take the time to bring in business professionals, politicians, spiritual and community leaders to talk to them about being on time, ethics in the workplace and dressing for success,” he said.  “One of the things we try to teach them is you have to dress for an opportunity.”

“Many times dress trends are shaped by hip-hop artists or professional athletes, which is fine; however a lot of our young people can’t show up on jobs with the LeBron look with a suit jacket and shorts,” he continued.

Along with learning in the classroom, the interns also have to complete community service projects during the seven-week program.  Mack feels it gives the young people a sense of humility by working in soup kitchens and clothing banks, for example.

The main focus for this year’s program is financial literacy, Mack said.  The church has partnered with several organizations that will come in on a weekly basis to train the interns on how to manage money, prepare for retirement and how to invest their money.

Each week the group meets with Mack for intense training sessions on things such as leadership principles, integrity and being on time, to name a few.  Mack also has the students work on projects inside the church based on their college majors.

“If a student is a sports management major, we connect them with the YCFL football league and if they have a finance background, we have them help us devise a system for the church budget, for example,” he said.  “We like to use them where they are so at the end of the program, they have a project they would have completed over the summer.”

Mack said he loves to see the growth of the young people at the end of the program versus when they first came in. 

“I have personally witnessed where a student come in and they know about the reality they have to work one day, but they really don’t understand that world, so there is a fear there,” he continued.  “So what we try to do is give them information so they won’t have to operate in that fear and give them information to prepare them of what to expect.”

The program is open to all students from churches around the city.  One student has come as far as South Carolina to be involved with the internship.

“We just want to fill the gap so we can start producing business people from the local church,” Mack said.  “Then they can take those principles into the marketplace and they impact the marketplace with principles from the church without even saying it’s the church.”

About Author

WS Chronicle

WS Chronicle

Related Articles


Featured Sponsor

Receive Chronicle Updates

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.



More Sponsors