Why send your child to Brethren Academy? 

Brethren Academy provides a valuable experience for your teenager to explore their faith and calling. Participants will have the unique experience of living on a university campus while growing in relationship with peers in small groups, dorm rooms, and mentors in their undergraduate counselors.

What they Learn

Students will listen to interactive speakers and discuss challenging ideas in a way that begins to prepare them for academics in college. Most importantly though, your son or daughter will come into contact with their faith in a way that expands their understanding of who Christ is, how their faith community shapes their identity, and how their unique gifts and personality can change the world.

Gaining Deeper Spiritual Understanding

Ashland University and Ashland Theological Seminary operate with the conviction that preparing leaders for tomorrow requires more than clarifying calling and building competency. Maturity requires a firm understanding of our core identity and depth of character. Our ministry at Brethren Academy is structured with a view towards shaping students into Christlike leaders from the inside out. 


"Our daughter had such an enriching experience at Brethren Academy from start to finish. She learned tons about the Brethren faith. An absolutely amazing group of leaders, teachers, peers surrounded her, encouraged her, stretched her and loved on her. As parents, we were thankful she was able to have an opportunity that had such an impact in her faith journey."

- Mel Plank, parent from Ashland, OH

Safety and Supervision 

About the Staff

Participants will be under the care and guidance of the Brethren Academy. leadership team, which includes the Program Coordinator, Associate Director of the Office of Christian Ministry, and the 8 Ashland University students who serve the program as both support staff and counselors. We want you to know that your child is in good hands.

Summer Institute Safety Measures

Ashland University is located in rural Ashland, OH and prides itself on going to all measures to keep their students safe. Below are just a few of the features of Brethren Academy and the Ashland University summer community life in which you may be interested:

  • Single Sex Dorming: Brethren Academy residence hall floors are single-sex: men are never allowed in the women’s floors, and vice versa. Their programed key card alone will provide access to their residence hall.
  • Supervision: Brethren Academy counselors live in the dorms with participants and serve as resident counselors. All Brethren Academy staff and counselors must pass Criminal Background checks.
  • Cell Phone Policy: We ask that students have a charged cell phone on them at all times for easy contact. The Program Coordinator’s cell phone number will be distributed to both parents and participants at the start of the week to ensure contact while off campus.
  • Public Safety at Ashland University: The AU Department of Safety Services serves the campus community 24 hours a day. For more information on the safety policies of the University click here.

Contact Information

You are invited to contact the Program Coordinator with any needs, be they financial, health, safety, travel, or otherwise. Cory Smith can be reached via phone: 419.289.5481 or email:

Support the Growth of this Program

We are able to provide this Summer Institute for high school students from across the country through the generosity of others. Originally funded entirely by a grant from Lilly Endowment Inc., we are asking for your support as we continue to grow in numbers of teens we reach and services we can provide.

If you are interested in learning more about how you can support our mission at Brethren Academy, please follow this link:

Support Brethren Academy