Hillsong International Leadership College (HILC) exists to train Christian leaders for ministry in every sphere of the church and community life. The College operates in a symbiotic relationship with Hillsong Church, which provides a wide and diverse number of resources and opportunities for the theoretical and practical aspects of the College’s educational processes. The College operates as part of the ministry of Hillsong Church, and thus works to further the vision and mission of the Church, which is to reach and influence the world by building a large Christ-centred, Bible-based church, changing mindsets, and empowering people to lead and impact in every sphere of life.
The College recognises the divine call upon every Christian to servant-leadership, to serve God through Jesus Christ, and to serve one another. Each student is viewed as having inherent value and great potential to impact their sphere of influence. HILC is committed to helping students identify their God-given calling and develop the personal talents and leadership skills that will enable them to fulfil their life purpose and ministry. In its broadest sense, ministry consists of service in every area of life including the local church, community, and workplace. However, the College recognises the specialist demands of ordained ministry and trains students for a broad scope of ministry expression, some of which include youth, children, missions, music, TV and media, as well as general church leadership.
Effective ministry flows out of the whole person. Therefore the College adopts a holistic approach to all its educational programs and is deeply committed to developing all areas of the individual. This extends beyond knowledge to skills, values, and attitudes. Training and education pervade all areas including the spiritual, cognitive, affective, relational, and practical domains. Spiritual development remains the highest priority and is an integral component of all courses. The College specifically seeks to instil in students a distinctive approach and philosophy to church life and ministry, reflected in Hillsong Church’s life and ministry, which includes values such as servant-hood, excellence, dedication, and integrity. These things underscore all of the College’s curriculum and culture.
As a Christian College, the Bible forms the core of the curriculum and is the standard for all teaching and praxis. Classes are conducted in a way that stimulates reflection, encourages personal growth, and allows for self-directed study. Students are equipped with a sound knowledge of the Bible, as well as an understanding of the analytical processes for its application to personal growth and ministry. Teaching is always aimed at transformation, with a strong emphasis on the application so that students’ lives display consistency in belief and practice.
The College recognises the different strengths and capacities of students and as such, seeks to provide a range of courses that cater to varying levels of academic ability. The acquisition of skills is an essential part of the College curriculum and subjects typically contain a high skills component. This ensures that students demonstrate competency in the workplace and include leadership, study skills, personal life skills, interpersonal and communication skills. The College employs a variety of teaching approaches with a heavy emphasis on learning through practical experience. Practicum, coaching, and internships are integral features of academic programs. Students are able to learn both theory and practice side by side in and through the ministry departments of Hillsong Church.
Because of the practical approach to education and emphasis on modelling, care is given to employing leaders and teachers that are proven in their areas of specialisation. The teaching approach of the College is highly relational and the staff are engaged in a significant degree of pastoral involvement with the student body. Students work alongside highly skilled and motivated leaders who impart not only knowledge and expertise, but also ethos and attitude.
The College provides training services to adherents of all church streams but maintains the distinctive emphasis of the Assembly of God denomination (also known as Australian Christian Churches within Australia). While being Protestant in belief, it is referred to as being ‘Pentecostal in application’. The premise for all religious teaching in the course is based on the AOG Articles of Faith. The College also welcomes students from all Christian Church affiliated denominations.