Saturday September 7, 2013 was a big day for Redeemer’s Youth Ministry Certificate Program as the first cohort of students was awarded their certificates, becoming Redeemer’s newest alumni. The four certificate recipients started with the program when it launched in the summer of 2011. Since then, they have taken a combination of two week-long summer intensive courses, and completed an internship placement. Certificates were awarded by Provost and Vice President Academic, Dr. Doug Needham and Youth Ministry Certificate program director, Dr. Syd Hielema. The ceremony was attended by fellow classmates currently enrolled in the program, families of the recipients, instructors and internship mentors among other Redeemer staff members connected to the program. The afternoon was a great testament to God’s faithfulness and a “dream come true” for Dr. Hielema who had the vision for a certificate program designed specifically to meet the needs of people already working in Youth Ministry. Recipients expressed their gratitude for this opportunity and talked about how they have been able to enhance their work with the solid educational training they received, and by working with a group of highly motivated and dedicated individuals. The YMCP program refined and refocused their own ministry paths, and they been blessed with getting to know colleagues and friends through the rich collective learning experience. Redeemer University College also recognizes that through their hard work, dedication, trust and support of a new program, this first group of mature students helped shape a certificate that we are proud to offer. We look forward to seeing its continued growth in the future.