A Gap Year that Builds a Full Faith

Faith Formation

Vanguards are fully faithful.

In mind, body, and spirit we seek to be faithful followers of Christ.

We don't stop with seeking God's truth - we stretch to understand how the Christian faith influences our whole life and how to live accordingly.

Body: Working and Serving in our Community and Abroad

Taking a gap year will make you more employable. Not only do our Tracks and vocational areas allow you to explore a variety of professions and skill sets, but they also help you build both the hard and soft skills needed to excel in a work environment.

Vanguards are led by professional staff and work alongside our Fellows in the following Tracks. 

  • Equestrian Track: care for, train, and help manage the HoneyRock herd
  • Journeys Track: Construction, Grounds, Auto Shop, Kitchen, Media
  • Adventure Programing: Guest Services, Retail, Cafe, Facilitating Activities

Dive into new cultures by observing and participating in the Great Commission at work in the world. We're building long-term partnerships with organizations and ministries in the Northwoods of Wisconsin to Jarabacoa in the Dominican Republic to the Lawndale neighborhood in Chicago.

The year kicks off with a 6-day hiking trip to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. This sets the stage for many outdoor activities, year-round. Do you think winter in the Northwoods keeps us inside? Think again!

Spirit: Building an Authentic Community

We believe in the local church. After exploring churches in the Eagle River and Three Lakes communities, Vanguards choose one to invest in for the school year. They get involved in music and children's ministry, evening events, and service opportunities.

Why do you believe what you believe? Dig into your faith by making the time and space to have regular "solo" times; joining in corporate and personal devotions and prayer; and being an active member of a vibrant Christ-centered community.

Ranging in age from newborn to 72 years, our community is made up of staff families, post-college young adults, graduate students, and professional staff. This diverse gathering of people is equal parts fun and wise - Vanguards are poured into by people from all walks of life.

Mind: Learning How to Think

The best kind of teaching is face to face and within a learning community. Most gap years offer credit through online, hybrid, or remote teaching methods. At Vanguard, professors make the trip to HoneyRock to engage with Vanguards in person.

What is true? Learning how to wrestle with life's big questions - especially those of faith - is one of the most valuable skills we can learn today. Based on the historical church calendar, we propose big questions that lead us into considering diverse perspectives and having deep conversations.

...without sitting in a stuffy classroom for 8 hours a day. As a natural part of the program, Vanguards are picking up credit left and right. Whether it's having a conversation with a Wheaton College professor, taking a mountain bike out on a trail, or staring up at the night sky through a telescope, Vanguards are earning up to 16 (transferrable) college credits.