Shaping the Future by Dr. Guy Chmieleski is an excellent book for campus ministers, professors, parents, pastors, and university officials—anyone who is concerned about the future of today’s collegians and the young “emerging” adult population. These collegians are in the transition of a lifetime! The reader will find how crucial our role is in helping today’s young generation navigate healthy autonomy, relationships, and purpose. Chmieleski draws from his own personal experience as a college student and his research and years of serving on campus and provides practical ways we can lead, influence, and resource this future generation through intentional mentoring relationships.
Dennis Gaylor, National Director of Chi Alpha Campus Ministries, USA, Springfield, Missouri
Too often we only hear about how college students aren’t where we think they should be, which simply is not mutually beneficial to the body of Christ. Thankfully, Guy doesn’t allow us to arrogantly posture ourselves in shallow misunderstanding but instead brings practical insights to the core issues needing to be addressed and does so in a way that gently nudges us toward intentionally making disciples from a heart that is motivated by love.
Chuck Bomar, Pastor of Colossae Church, Portland, Oregon; Founder of CollegeLeader (CollegeLeader.org), and Author of Better Off Without Jesus and Worlds Apart: Understanding the Mindset and Values of 18–25 Year Olds
If there is any doubt that today’s college students are in need of wise and compassionate mentors, Guy Chmieleski’s book expertly dispels it. He writes from fifteen years of experience, giving us convincing evidence as well as helpful resources to do the job. This book is an essential tool for those of us who are willing to accept the call to mentor a generation that waits for us to lead the way.
Tracy Balzer, Director of Christian Formation at John Brown University and Author of A Listening Life
Every college student needs a mentor, and every mentor needs this book.
Tyler Ellis, College Minister at the University of Delaware and Author of Question Everything
The college years have the potential to be one of the most life-shaping seasons of one’s life, but the determining factor is how well students continue to grow and mature in that new setting. In Shaping Their Future, Guy Chmieleski helps potential mentors understand a big-picture approach to how to relate and guide college students so that they can navigate through the transition and into a healthy life in college.
Tommy McGregor, Founder of TheTransMission and Author of Lost in Transition: Becoming Spiritually Prepared for College
There is a crisis of faith and maturity among today’s college and university students. One of the best answers to this crisis is mature, adult mentors who will listen and speak loving truth in their lives. Guy Chmieleski’s book, Shaping Their Future, gives you an insight into what the students are going through, but more importantly he helps you understand their thought process. At the end of each section is the “Mentor’s Toolbox,” which you will find to be a wonderful and practical help in your walking with students. Whether you are a professional college minister or a layperson who cares, you will find this book everyday helpful!
Arliss Dickerson, Leadership Development Consultant for Baptist Collegiate Ministry
In Shaping Their Future, Guy Chmieleski identifies the key developmental areas experienced by college students. Based on his own experiences as a student and now as a spiritual mentor, Chmieleski offers practical guidance for making intentional interventions in the lives of the students we encounter. Acknowledging that the college years are crucial to the growth of students, he encourages us as mentors to go beyond superficial relationships and to challenge students to dig deeper so greater strides are made as students prepare for a life that makes a difference in their world for Jesus Christ.
Dr. Joe Brockinton, Vice President for Student Life at Southern Wesleyan University
Guy has broken this topic down into bite-size chunks that are simple with relevant themes important in any mentoring relationship. I found myself reflecting not only on my position in higher ed and opportunity to mentor but on my parenting too.
Shaping Their Future is a great call to take the initiative carefully but take the initiative in mentoring and challenging students in our spheres of influence to grow spiritually in healthy ways. Thanks for putting this out there!
As a higher education administrator for twenty-five years and father of three adult college students, I loved the opportunity to interact with topics that are incredibly relevant in shaping the next generation of leaders. This is a book that a wide variety of people will resonate with.
Dr. Mark Troyer, Vice President for Enrollment Management at Asbury University
Every college student studies under the influence. This book will inspire you to be that influence.
With two college-bound kids of my own, I would give this book to anyone who would have the courage to help shape their future.
Tim Hawkins, Director of Sojourn Collegiate Ministries and the Chaplain at MIT
Life with God is an adventure. For many the university years are a defining part of that adventure. Through humor and fresh insight, Guy Chmieleski does a masterful job in creating for us a practical blueprint on how to best prepare this generation for the full experience.
Dave Short, National Director of Campus Alpha, Alpha USA
There’s no shortage of talking heads opining on the failures of today’s young adults. The problem is many of them don’t work with young adults. They’re observers, not participants. Dr. Guy Chmieleski is a refreshing exception. He’s an academic and a practitioner who has devoted his life to working with college students. He has earned the right to be heard. And what he has to say is wise, practical, and hope filled. Shaping Their Future is an indispensable guide for anyone who cares about the next generation. The book is crammed with wisdom on how to help young people navigate the rocky terrain of early adulthood while growing in their commitment to follow Jesus. I’ll be recommending Shaping Their Future to anyone with a heart for young people.
Drew Dyck, Managing Editor of Leadership Journal and author of Generation Ex-Christian.
Shaping their Future is a must read for anyone seeking to mentor college students, point them to Jesus, and prepare them for the rest of their lives. Students need and want your help! This is your field manual that not only gives you great insight to many of the most critical topics they wrestle with, but also helps you ask life-changing questions and journey with them more effectively.
John Allert, Executive Director of Campus Ministry Toolbox
As willing as our hearts are to pour into college students, the responsibility that we have as mentors to the younger generation can often be daunting. Guy Chmieleski doesn’t sugarcoat the challenges that we face in coming alongside college students today, but he does offer encouragement and insight that will help us in the process. Chmieleski provides us with an in-depth understanding of college students—their faith and worldview, their understanding of college, money, responsibility, freedom, intimacy, and their place in the world. Understanding their value systems, families of origin, and how culture has shaped them equips us to engage with them in a meaningful way—a way that invites them into a journey of pursuing God’s truth, gaining meaningful experiences, claiming more responsibility, and asking tough questions.
This book is a helpful tool in preparing us to pursue meaningful relationships with this generation of college students in order to help them make the most of their formative college years. Chmieleski challenges us to stop waiting for opportunities to develop these relationships and be intentional with initiating and building them—our students are counting on us too! His sense of urgency in this is one that resonates—we are doing students a disservice by allowing them to waste such a significant season of their lives; college can be a time of squandering opportunities and wandering aimlessly, or it can be one of incredible growth and formation. Chmieleski’s invitation for us to invest in this generation is one we must take seriously, and his book is a useful guide into investing in their growth and development in a way that is life-giving and guided by the transforming powers of the Holy Spirit.
Brad Baker, Pastor to College Students at Saddleback Church
Dr. Guy Chmieleski has written an insightful and informative book that will assist anyone working with young adults in making the very most out their formative years. Read this book with a pen, paper, and a highlighter at the ready! There is much to glean and immediately apply from this book. It is a much-needed resource for a pivotal season of life.
Pastor Laurel Bunker, Dean of Campus Ministries and Campus Pastor at Bethel University