Music and Worship Ministry Faculty
Dr. Tom Webster, Coordinator of Music and Worship Ministry
Andrew Pressley, Adjunct Instructor (Associate Pastor, Music – First Baptist Church, Lindale)
The Music and Worship Ministry exists to affirm the call of ministry espoused by any and all students (male and female) and to prepare them for a life of faithful service.
The world and work of church music is diverse and rapidly changing, and we strive to provide students the opportunity to broaden their experiences in preparation for this field. The Music and Worship Ministry major is a curriculum designed to provide a wide range of opportunities to students who seek to use their music skills to minister to others, primarily through traditional music leadership roles in the church but through less traditional performance-based ministry opportunities available to ministry-minded musicians.
The curriculum provides an historical foundation of church music and helps the student develop personal philosophical approaches to scripturally-based ministry and worship practices. In addition to basic musicianship skills common to all music majors, Music and Worship Ministry students are challenged to 1) develop skills in directing music ensembles of all ages and types found in most churches, 2) understand and respond to God's call to ministry in their personal lives, and 3) gain experience working in music ministry leadership positions during, and as a part of, their course of study at ETBU.
Since many young students seeking opportunities to respond to God's call to ministry are unsure how that call will materialize into long-term vocational plans, students are encouraged to pursue the Music and Worship Ministry major. They are assigned faculty advisors who can mentor them, inform them of the professional opportunities that are available to them, and guide them through this decision-making process.
Student Character and Professional Expectations
All Music and Worship Ministry majors are expected to a articulate their faith and call to ministry. They are to demonstrate their commitment to Christ and the call through living a life consistent with the Christian values found in the scriptures. Students are expected to demonstrate good moral character and honesty, and conduct themselves in a manner consistent with the Christian mission of ETBU.
Worship Leadership and Practicum Experiences (Projects and Performances)
Music and Worship Ministry students are encouraged to develop and utilize their musical gifts and talents throughout their college journey. Local churches often need part-time and volunteer worship leaders for the congregation, youth groups or other groups within the church. Students will gain tremendous experience by accepting these opportunities as they are able. Some churches have internship opportunities that allow students to work with an experienced and trained church musician. Students should seek out these positions with the assistance of the music faculty and advisors.
The Music and Worship Ministry curricula requires students to assume a ministry position (volunteer or paid) under the supervision of a professional in the field. This practicum experience is typically undertaken during the final full academic year (Fall-Spring) of the student’s course of study. The second semester of the practicum (spring semester) provides students the opportunity to prepare and present a full worship service in which the student can demonstrate the worship planning and musical skills he/she has developed. This practicum project is in addition to the student’s performance recital presented during his/her junior year.