Archives For August 2015

An annual tradition on the blog – a ton of stuff you can use on campus these first few weeks. Hopefully it saves you some time or gives you ideas.

Cool Music


Here’s an all-new 2015 Spotify playlist that we use at all of our freshmen cookouts and our weekly meeting.

It’s a mix of Indie Rock, Pop/Dance, and Christian Hip Hop.

We pay $10 for the month of August to get Spotify Premium so you don’t have annoying commercials.

glow sticks and beach balls1

As I’ve said before:

While cool, upbeat music may be #27 on the list of important things about a Cru meeting, it’s important nonetheless.

What’s the first thing students encounter when they come to your meeting? Your music that you’re playing before the meeting.

And what happens when they hear Newsboys or Rebecca St. James pumping out of your speakers? You immediately confirm their worst suspicions that you are cheezy and out of touch with their reality.

As much as I am not a big fan of hip hop nor dance music, at our weekly meeting we include quite a bit of hip hop/dance. I run the music at our regional winter conference and can conclusively say that hip hop & dance makes a marked difference on the “vibe” of the crowd. It makes your meeting a party. Literally. People dance. Especially if you add beach balls and glow necklaces (we have our first 2 weekly meetings outside – beach balls may be a little less fun indoors).

Here’s a bonus playlist – Cru Hangouts – upbeat indie music to put on at more chill events (Leadership meeting, Leadership Retreat etc).

Cru Intro Video

Here’s a video we show at the beginning of our meeting the first few weeks. It serves two purposes:

  1. It functions as a cue to sit down and be quiet (there is intentionally space at the beginning to give everyone a chance to sit down, and music at the end to give MC’s time to walk up).
  2. It communicates a little about who we are and what we’re about

To download it: click the Vimeo logo to go to the site.

Spiritual Interest Survey

We’ve put a lot of effort into streamlining our Spiritual Interest Survey card. We do it with 3000 freshmen/students the first week of class – so we want it to be quick and effective. Click here to download the editable PDF (open in Photoshop – it’s set up 4/page and it uses “smart objects” so if you edit one flier it changes all 4 fliers). Click for an adapted version we use at a Community College – pdf or Photoshop. And here’s one we use with athletes for AIA – pdf or Photoshop.

1 Minute Questionnaire

And this is NC State Cru’s sharp looking survey card (click to download – unfortunately it’s in Apple Pages – so Mac’s only):

Cru Freshmen Survey Card (NCSU)

Cru Card

Our Cru Card that we use for our weekly meeting is similar but a bit different from the survey. You can download the editable PDF (open in Photoshop – it’s set up 4/page and it uses “smart objects” so if you edit one flier it changes all 4 fliers) file here.

1 Minute Questionnaire

Simple Cru Flier

Nothing special. But I always think it’s fun to see what other campuses do for promo. Here’s the editable PDF for the first (open in Photoshop – it’s set up 4/page and it uses “smart objects” so if you edit one flier it changes all 4 fliers). And the Photoshop file for the color version.

Dorm studies 2015

generic dorm studies 2015

We used to do them in color but have found that b/w is just as sharp looking IF:

  • You print them on card stock
  • Have them “cut to bleed” (so that there is no white border)

First Week Events Flier

A few ideas from across the U.S.:

Florida Cru:

cru at UF welcome week events

Christian Challenge – Chico State – Paul Worcester:

worcester first week events

Fall Retreat Brochures

Here’s our 2015 brochure (designed by Cru’s amazing Libby Slaughter!). And here’s the photoshop files so you can edit it and use it!

Fall Retreat outside

Fall Retreat inside

Here’s our 2014 brochure and a post with 4 different (older) Fall Retreat Brochure designs we’ve used. Photoshop file

Just front of brochure

Campus Brochures

A leaving piece that explains everything we do offer in Cru. See here for more details and to download.Arkansas brochure

Arkansas brochure inside

First 4 Weeks Calendar

Always fun to see how other ministries operate. So here’s an overview of what our First 4 Weeks calendar looks like. Here’s a template you can use.

first 5 week calendar

What about YOU?

Do you have any stuff your campus uses that would be helpful to share? Link to it in the comments!

A friend of mine who leads Cru at LSU asked what I as a Director do to get ready for the fall.

 

Thought I’d share my email I sent him in case it’s helpful for anyone else!

 

What I usually do to get ready for the fall is read back over all our notes from our 4 days of spring planning (kept in Google Drive). Just get myself up to speed. Then I look over the the first four weeks calendar. Here’s ours:
1st 4 weeks of class Calendar 2015

Then I do a few things:

  • Remind myself there are 3 things your staff need.
  • Appoint one of your staff as first week director:
    • leads cookouts and other outreaches we do during move in week
    • makes sure spiritual interest tables are set up and manned
  • Appoint one of your staff as follow up director
    • The primary responsibilities are:
    • Overseeing the follow-up of spiritual interest Cards
    • Launching of Community Groups (tracking with leaders on whether they’re following up and inviting to their CG, getting students plugged in)
  • Assign a couple of your staff to run point on the two night student leadership retreat
  • Those director roles help free you up to see the whole instead of stressing about the details
  • Line up pastors to speak at our first 3 Cru Meetings
  • Confirm details for fall retreat – speaker, location, band, start work on brochure/promo video
  • Send out an email to our team, encouraging them to get all personal things done before they report back. I usually email something like this:
    • “Please have all your personal stuff done before next week (moving in, raising support, prayer letter, etc) as we will be pretty slammed starting Aug. 5 (so take advantage of the next few days to get all personal stuff done!)”
  • Then I meet with my co-leader, Katie Aist. We usually meet twice (2 hours each day), to start planning out each planning day.

 

Here’s links to details for each of our planning days:

  • Day 1 – connecting as a family; immediate to-do’s
    • I think it’s helpful to have a new staff/intern orientation (for new staff and interns) – One of our senior staff leads that in the afternoon after planning. Here’s our content.
  • Day 2 – nailing down critical path steps; refresher on what we planned in the spring
  • Day 3 – Vision and Clarity of Job What does it look like for me/us to succeed?
  • Day 4 – split men/women to nail down student community group leaders and discipleship
  • Day 5 – odds and ends; vision for sending
  • 2 full Fun Days (usually one with kids and everyone. Then one with just adults – split men/women)

 

What helps you prep for the fall?