History of Campus Outreach

Campus Outreach began as the dream of a local church pastor in Birmingham, AL to reach college students at smaller campuses traditionally underserved by campus ministries. In 1978 an evangelistic outreach began to students at Samford University. The ministry quickly spread as students transferred to nearby colleges to pursue the vision of reaching students on campuses where there was no current evangelistic work underway.

Since 1978, this vision of reaching spiritually lost students has led Campus Outreach to launch 23 ministry franchises in the US and 13 ministry locations in 10 other countries. God has enabled over 55,000 students to encounter the gospel of Jesus Christ at evangelistic events, provided intensive leadership training to over 30,000 young leaders, and deployed over 15,000 alumni into a lifetime of service to Christ.

The Campus Outreach Mission

Our mission is to Glorify God by Building Laborers on the Campus for the Lost World. By engaging in this work over 40 years, Campus Outreach has grown into a world-class leader development organization. We are focused on building leader development pipelines through local churches, preparing today’s students to shape tomorrow’s world.

The Campus Outreach Difference

Personal Evangelism and Life on Life Discipleship

Campus Outreach began by asking “Where are the students whom no one else reaching?” This spirit has continually led CO to focus on students without an understanding of the gospel, and as students trust in Christ they are engaged in life-on-life discipleship. As students are engaged in this process, we see God grow them from being spiritually lost to becoming spiritual leaders.

Commitment to Leader Development and Deployment

Today’s graduates are tomorrow’s marketplace and ministry leaders. We focus on developing and deploying those leaders. Through evangelism and discipleship, we provide emerging leaders with catalytic growth opportunities and experiences, and then launch these leaders into vocational ministry and the marketplace.

Partnership with the Local ChurcH

Each CO location functions in partnership with a local church, sent to reach students on campuses in proximity to the church. By functioning in partnership with and under the authority of local churches, we prepare the next generation of leaders for a lifetime of service through the body of Christ.

Connection with the Campus Outreach network

Through partnership with the local church, Campus Outreach is locally led. But through participation in the Campus Outreach network, Campus Outreach is also globally connected. Our network of 36 locations in 11 countries creates incredible opportunities for growth, service and collaboration.