1. Is Outtatown a "mission trip"?
2. What do you mean by "discipleship"?
3. Is it an academic program?
4. What is "experiential learning"?
5. What topics are covered in the teaching?
6. Is Outtatown similar to a YWAM DTS or a Capernwray Bible School?
7. Approximately how much of my time will be spent in classrooms?
8. Approximately how much of my time will be spent doing service work?
9. What kind of adventure activities can I expect?
Yes and no. Outtatown is a discipleship school, which focuses on training students in what it means to be a follower of Jesus Christ. Part of following Christ is to serve others, so on Outtatown there are many opportunities provided to do so. Each semester will include several service opportunities, ranging from a couple of days to a couple of weeks, and sometimes more.
In the Bible, the disciples were essentially students of Jesus during his ministry. When we use the word “discipleship”, we are referring to the intentional process of learning how to be a student or a follower of Jesus in the modern day context and in the context of living in community.
Academics play an important role in this program and students earn university credit that can be transferred toward future studies. However, learning on Outtatown isn’t broken down into specific courses with evaluation tools such as essays or exams. Outtatown combines classroom and experiential learning, with every part of the experience being an integral element of the overall curriculum. For example, a conversation over coffee with a Site Leader or an opportunity serving food to the homeless are considered just as important to learning as a class on the New Testament. Students will have opportunities to write reflections that help identify the things they are learning.
Experiential learning in the Outtatown program is an attempt to merge cognitive with hands-on learning, faith with practice, and evangelical fervor with true community. With the world as their classroom, student learning will include: lectures by visiting instructors, selective reading and reflection, mentoring provided by site leaders, unique adventure opportunities, discussions with peers, and the insights of many people and experiences. Then, through research, study, discussion, assignments, and personal journaling, students will be challenged to identify and articulate what they have learned. Many students find that this unique educational approach contributes to a renewed “joy of learning” and to a greater sense of purpose for further education.
Topics will vary somewhat from year to year, but examples for first semester teaching may include: Old and New Testament, Christian theology and ethics, Church history, Biblical interpretation, The nature of the Church and Christian worship, and How to be faithful to Jesus Christ in the context of the current world situation. Students will also receive some teaching about First Nations culture and current situation as well as poverty in Canada’s urban areas.
Topics from second semester will focus on history, culture and the current situation in both Guatemala and South Africa. Students going to Guatemala will also take Spanish classes and students going to South Africa will learn about Conflict Resolution.
It is similar, yet unique. Outtatown could be considered a combination of these two schools. The original concept of Outtatown was to take parts of both types of schools to create a school that offered a chance to experience the travel of a mission/discipleship focused school, and the education/theology of a Bible school. With the hope of preparing you for a life of discipleship in your future endeavours.
During each semester, approximately a third of your time will be spent receiving instruction. Your classrooms will range from mountain tops, to campfires; include museums, churches and classrooms at your camps. An average day of instruction would include approximately 4 hours of lessons.
During the first semester you will spend approximately 1-2 days/week serving at Camps, and in the Inner City of Winnipeg & Vancouver. In the second semester you will spend a total of approximately 4 weeks partnering with various ministries.
We like to believe that students will be engaged in activities on a rather regular basis that one might consider adventure, however here are a few of the more "high adventure" activities the program will cover: Bungee jumping, canoe trip, skiing/snowboarding, caving, volcano trekking (Guatemala only), multi-day Drakensburg Mountains hike (S.A. only), camel ride through Sarah Desert (B.F. only), and a chance to see Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower (B.F. only). Depending on the opportunities and the year there may be other activity options.
During free time, students will have the opportunity to pursue many other adventure opportunities that could include: mountain biking, rock climbing, white water rafting, abseiling, shark diving (S.A. only), reverse bungee (Guatemala), zip-lining, paragliding, horseback riding, and surfing (Guatemala & S.A. Only).