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Career and Education Opportunities for Religious Activities Directors in Chattanooga, Tennessee

Religious activities directors can find many career and educational opportunities in the Chattanooga, Tennessee area. Currently, 4,760 people work as religious activities directors in Tennessee. This is expected to grow 19% to about 5,640 people by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for religious activities directors are expected to grow by about 12.6%. Religious activities directors generally 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 $24 hourly or $50,250 yearly on average in Tennessee and about $17 hourly or $36,100 annually on average in the U.S. as a whole. Compared with people working in the overall category of Religious Services, people working as religious activities directors in Tennessee earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Religious Services nationally. People working as religious activities directors can fill a number of jobs, such as: youth worker, youth minister, and religious minister.

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

Tennessee Temple University - Chattanooga, TN

Tennessee Temple University, 1815 Union Ave, Chattanooga, TN 37404. Tennessee Temple University is a small university located in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 706 students and an admission rate of 24%. Tennessee Temple University has 4 areas of study related to Religious Activities Director. They are:

  • Bible/Biblical Studies, associate's degree and bachelor's degree which graduated three and four students respectively in 2008.
  • Missions/Missionary Studies and Missiology, bachelor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • Religious Education, master's degree.
  • Youth Ministry, bachelor's degree.

Temple Baptist Seminary - Chattanooga, TN

Temple Baptist Seminary, 1906 Union Avenue, Chattanooga, TN 37404. Temple Baptist Seminary is a small school located in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 160 students. Temple Baptist Seminary has a master's degree program in Religious Education which graduated twenty-five students in 2008.

Lee University - Cleveland, TN

Lee University, 1120 N Ocoee St, Cleveland, TN 37311. Lee University is a small university located in Cleveland, Tennessee. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,147 students and an admission rate of 64%. Lee University has 4 areas of study related to Religious Activities Director. They are:

  • Bible/Biblical Studies, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated one and three students respectively in 2008.
  • Missions/Missionary Studies and Missiology, bachelor's degree which graduated 5 students in 2008.
  • Religious Education, bachelor's degree.
  • Youth Ministry, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated zero and nine students respectively in 2008.

Covenant College - Lookout Mountain, GA

Covenant College, 14049 Scenic Highway, Lookout Mountain, GA 30750-4164. Covenant College is a small college located in Lookout Mountain, Georgia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,343 students and an admission rate of 65%. Covenant College has a bachelor's degree program in Bible/Biblical Studies.

Bryan College - Dayton, TN

Bryan College, 721 Bryan Drive, Dayton, TN 37321-7000. Bryan College is a small college located in Dayton, Tennessee. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has an admission rate of 72%. Bryan College has 2 areas of study related to Religious Activities Director. They are:

  • Bible/Biblical Studies, bachelor's degree which graduated 3 students in 2008.
  • Religious Education, bachelor's degree which graduated 5 students in 2008.

Southern Adventist University - Collegedale, TN

Southern Adventist University, 4881 Taylor Cir, Collegedale, TN 37315-0370. Southern Adventist University is a small university located in Collegedale, Tennessee. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,731 students and an admission rate of 70%. Southern Adventist University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Religious Education which graduated five and one students respectively in 2008.

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LOCATION INFORMATION: Chattanooga, Tennessee

Chattanooga, Tennessee
Chattanooga, Tennessee photo by Avala

Chattanooga is situated in Hamilton County, Tennessee. It has a population of over 170,880, which has grown by 9.9% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chattanooga, 85, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Chattanooga are priced at $141,100 on average, which is below the state average. In 2008, two hundred sixty-two new homes were built in Chattanooga, down from four hundred forty-one the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Chattanooga are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and health care. The average commute to work is about 20 minutes. More than 21.5% of Chattanooga residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.5%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chattanooga is 9.5%, which is less than Tennessee's average of 10.2%.

The percentage of Chattanooga residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 58.2%, is more than both the national and state average. Stuart Heights Baptist Church, Kings Point Church and Stanley United Methodist Church are some of the churches located in Chattanooga. The largest religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Non-Charismatic Churches Independent.

Chattanooga is home to the Creeks Bend Golf Club and the Concord Golf Course as well as Warner Park and Ross Landing City Park. Shopping malls in the area include Northgate Mall, Northgate Crossing Shopping Center and Lee Plaza East Shopping Center. Visitors to Chattanooga can choose from Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites, Crystal Air Sport Motel and Hampton Inn Chattanooga I-75 North for temporary stays in the area.