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Career and Education Opportunities for Religious Activities Directors in Gresham, Oregon

Religious activities directors can find both educational opportunities and jobs in the Gresham, Oregon area. There are currently 1,540 jobs for religious activities directors in Oregon and this is projected to grow by 15% to about 1,780 jobs by 2016. This is better than the national trend for religious activities directors, which sees this job pool growing by about 12.6% over the next eight years. Religious activities directors generally direct and coordinate activities of a denominational group to meet religious needs of students.

The income of a religious activities director is about $15 hourly or $32,000 yearly on average in Oregon. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $17 per hour or $36,100 per year on average. Incomes for religious activities directors are not quite as good as in the overall category of Religious Services in Oregon, and better than the overall Religious Services category nationally. Religious activities directors work in a variety of jobs, including: junior high pastor, youth director, and children's director.

There are four schools within twenty-five miles of Gresham where you can study to be a religious activities director, among forty-six schools of higher education total in the Gresham area. Given that the most common education level for religious activities directors is a Master's degree, it will take about six years to learn 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 Gresham 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.
  • Health Education Specialist. Promote, maintain, and improve individual and community health by assisting individuals and communities to adopt healthy behaviors. Collect and analyze data to identify community needs prior to planning, implementing, and evaluating programs designed to encourage healthy lifestyles, policies and environments. May also serve as a resource to assist individuals, other professionals, or the community, and may administer fiscal resources for health education programs.
  • 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

Concordia University - Portland, OR

Concordia University, 2811 NE Holman Street, Portland, OR 97211-6099. Concordia University is a small university located in Portland, Oregon. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,709 students and an admission rate of 65%. Concordia University has a bachelor's degree and a postbaccalaureate certificate program in Religious Education which graduated two and seven students respectively in 2008.

Western Seminary - Portland, OR

Western Seminary, 5511 SE Hawthorne Blvd, Portland, OR 97215-3367. Western Seminary is a small school located in Portland, Oregon. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 725 students. Western Seminary has a master's degree and a doctor's degree program in Missions/Missionary Studies and Missiology which graduated three and six students respectively in 2008.

Cascade College - Portland, OR

Cascade College, 9101 E Burnside Street, Portland, OR 97216-1515. Cascade College is a small college located in Portland, Oregon. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 282 students. Cascade College has 2 areas of study related to Religious Activities Director. They are:

  • Bible/Biblical Studies, bachelor's degree.
  • Youth Ministry, bachelor's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.

Multnomah University - Portland, OR

Multnomah University, 8435 NE Glisan St, Portland, OR 97220. Multnomah University is a small university located in Portland, Oregon. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 845 students and an admission rate of 71%. Multnomah University has bachelor's degree, postbaccalaureate certificate, and master's degree programs in Bible/Biblical Studies which graduated fifty-five, forty-nine, and thirty-two students respectively in 2008.


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Gresham, Oregon
Gresham, Oregon photo by Amadeust

Gresham is situated in Multnomah County, Oregon. It has a population of over 101,221, which has grown by 12.2% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Gresham, 100, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Gresham cost $219,200 on average, which is above the state average. In 2008, one hundred three new homes were built in Gresham, down from three hundred five the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Gresham are health care, accommodation and food services, and educational services. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and administrative and support and waste management services. The average travel time to work is about 27 minutes. More than 18.4% of Gresham residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 4.9%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Gresham is 10.8%, which is greater than Oregon's average of 10.6%.

The percentage of Gresham residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 45.7%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Presbyterian Church (USA) and the Charismatic Churches Independent.

Gresham is home to the Linnemann and the Ruby Junction Maintenance Facility-Portland Light Rail System as well as Kane City Park and Davis City Park. Visitors to Gresham can choose from Best Western, Gresham Suites and Shilo Inn-Gresham for temporary stays in the area.