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Career and Education Opportunities for Religious Activities Directors in Irvine, California

If you want to be a religious activities director, the Irvine, California area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. About 9,100 people are currently employed as religious activities directors in California. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 14% to 10,400 people employed. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for religious activities directors are expected to grow by about 12.6%. In general, religious activities directors direct and coordinate activities of a denominational group to meet religious needs of students.

A person working as a religious activities director can expect to earn about $17 per hour or $37,080 per year on average in California and about $17 per hour or $36,100 annually on average in the U.S. as a whole. Incomes for religious activities directors are not quite as good as in the overall category of Religious Services in California, and better than the overall Religious Services category nationally. Religious activities directors work in a variety of jobs, including: choir teacher, school headmaster, and youth ministry director.

There are five schools within twenty-five miles of Irvine where you can study to be a religious activities director, among 112 schools of higher education total in the Irvine area. Given that the most common education level for religious activities directors is a Master's degree, you can expect to spend about six years studying to be a religious activities director if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years starting with a Bachelor's degree.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Religious Activities Director

Religious Activities Director video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, religious activities directors direct and coordinate activities of a denominational group to meet religious needs of students. They also plan, direct, or coordinate church school programs designed to promote religious education among church membership.

Religious activities directors attend workshops and conferences to obtain program concepts and resources. They also decide on appropriate curricula and class structures for educational programs. Equally important, religious activities directors have to identify and recruit potential volunteer staff. They are often called upon to implement program plans by ordering needed materials and handling other administrative details. They are expected to collaborate with other ministry members to determine goals and objectives for religious education programs, and to evolve ways to foster program participation. Finally, religious activities directors talk with clergy members and congregation organizations to foster support of and participation in religious education efforts.

Every day, religious activities directors are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to speak clearly. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for religious activities directors to analyze member participation and changes in congregation emphasis to establish needs for religious education. They are often called upon to train and supervise religious education instructional staff. They also counsel individuals regarding interpersonal and religious problems. They are sometimes expected to analyze revenue and program cost data to establish budget priorities. Somewhat less frequently, religious activities directors are also expected to formulate and conduct conferences dealing with the interpretation of religious concepts and convictions.

And finally, they sometimes have to visit congregation members' homes, or manage pastoral visits, in order to furnish data and resources regarding religious education programs.

Like many other jobs, religious activities directors must be able to take change and lead and have a strong social orientation.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Irvine include:

  • Child and Family Services Worker. Provide social services and assistance to improve the social and psychological functioning of children and their families and to maximize the family well-being and the academic functioning of children. May assist single parents, arrange adoptions, and find foster homes for abandoned or abused children. In schools, they address such problems as teenage pregnancy, misbehavior, and truancy. May also advise teachers on how to deal with problem children.
  • Minister. Conduct religious worship and perform other spiritual functions associated with beliefs and practices of religious faith or denomination. Provide spiritual and moral guidance and assistance to members.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Religious Activities Director Training

Biola University - La Mirada, CA

Biola University, 13800 Biola Ave, La Mirada, CA 90639-0001. Biola University is a medium sized university located in La Mirada, California. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 5,893 students and an admission rate of 81%. Biola University has 3 areas of study related to Religious Activities Director. They are:

  • Bible/Biblical Studies, bachelor's degree, postbaccalaureate certificate, master's degree, and post-master's certificate which graduated fifty-seven, one, forty-seven, and eight students respectively in 2008.
  • Missions/Missionary Studies and Missiology, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated fifty-one, nine, and ten students respectively in 2008.
  • Religious Education, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated twenty, seven, and three students respectively in 2008.

Vanguard University of Southern California - Costa Mesa, CA

Vanguard University of Southern California, 55 Fair Dr, Costa Mesa, CA 92626. Vanguard University of Southern California is a small university located in Costa Mesa, California. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,128 students and an admission rate of 81%. Vanguard University of Southern California has 3 areas of study related to Religious Activities Director. They are:

  • Bible/Biblical Studies, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated zero and four students respectively in 2008.
  • Missions/Missionary Studies and Missiology, bachelor's degree which graduated 6 students in 2008.
  • Youth Ministry, bachelor's degree which graduated 5 students in 2008.

Bethesda Christian University - Anaheim, CA

Bethesda Christian University, 730 N. Euclid St, Anaheim, CA 92801. Bethesda Christian University is a small university located in Anaheim, California. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 306 students and an admission rate of 93%. Bethesda Christian University has 3 areas of study related to Religious Activities Director. They are:

  • Bible/Biblical Studies, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated five and two students respectively in 2008.
  • Missions/Missionary Studies and Missiology, bachelor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • Religious Education, bachelor's degree.

Concordia University - Irvine, CA

Concordia University, 1530 Concordia West, Irvine, CA 92612-3299. Concordia University is a small university located in Irvine, California. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,452 students and an admission rate of 62%. Concordia University has a bachelor's degree program in Religious Education which graduated eleven students in 2008.

Hope International University - Fullerton, CA

Hope International University, 2500 E Nutwood Ave, Fullerton, CA 92831-3199. Hope International University is a small university located in Fullerton, California. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 841 students and an admission rate of 80%. Hope International University has 3 areas of study related to Religious Activities Director. They are:

  • Bible/Biblical Studies, bachelor's degree which graduated 14 students in 2008.
  • Missions/Missionary Studies and Missiology, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated three and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Youth Ministry, bachelor's degree which graduated 9 students in 2008.

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For more information, see the American Red Cross website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Irvine, California

Irvine, California
Irvine, California photo by SoCal L.A.

Irvine is situated in Orange County, California. It has a population of over 207,500, which has grown by 45.0% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Irvine, 136, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Irvine are valued at $283,000 on average, which is below the state average. In 2008, one hundred twenty-five new homes were built in Irvine, down from two hundred twenty-nine the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Irvine are educational services, professional, scientific, and technical services, and health care. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, educational services, and computer and electronic products. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 58.4% of Irvine residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 24.2%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Irvine is 7.3%, which is less than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of Irvine residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 44.8%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Charismatic Churches Independent.

Irvine is home to the International Raceway and the Heritage Park Library as well as Heritage Park and Alderwood Park. Shopping centers in the area include Heritage Plaza Shopping Center, Alton Square Shopping Center and Arbor Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Irvine can choose from Atrium Hotel At Orange County Airport and Amerilodge Electronics for temporary stays in the area.