We’re passionate about building up the next generation of ministry leaders. An internship with Willow Creek provides high-impact, hands-on work experience and training that contributes directly to your professional and personal development. 



Each ministry department runs a unique student internship program and there are select opportunities for those seeking to transition from the marketplace to the ministry.  All internships are unpaid and part-time.  To learn more about what an intern can expect click thebutton below.


All interested applicants must submit an official Student Internship Application, designating the preferred location and ministry with which they hope to serve.  

  • Each season, a select group of applicants are chosen for the interview process, which includes an affirmation and commitment to live according to biblical and church-specific values. 
  • We expect all interns to have reviewed and affirmed our core values and beliefs prior to submitting an application.
  • Applicants will be notified by email no later than two weeks prior to the start date of the quarter whether or not they have been selected for the internship program.  
  • Every volunteer leader and staff member must complete and pass Willow Creek’s Protection Process, which includes a background check, to help ensure the safety of our church. Similarly, prior to beginning the internship all candidates must complete this process, as well.


Willow Creek has seven campus locations, with 150+ ministries across Chicagoland. Our main campus, located in South Barrington, Illinois, offers a variety of internship opportunities listed below. Each internship program is uniquely crafted around specific seasons of ministry and led by directors under the following areas.  To learn more about interning at one of Willow's Regional Campuses, click here


REgional locations

Our regional locations provide the opportunity to gain maximum exposure to the real work of being the church, from the setup of an entire church service to the discipleship of children, students, and adults. Consider which location is the best match for your gifts and passions.



At Willow Creek, we strategically develop community in each of the seating sections of our 7,500-person auditorium. It is in these nearly 100 unique “section communities” that evangelism, connection, discipleship, and serving the larger community occur. You’ll experience the planning, coordination, and execution of events and seasonal projects that bring these communities together and help make our big church feel small. 


Looking to build on your current skills in the field of technical arts? You’ll receive hands-on, practical experience with church production, including technical directing, stage management, live audio, lighting, live video, and scenic design through this internship. Use your gifts behind the scenes in a world-class facility to help people connect with God during weekend, midweek, and student services.


Do you have passion and skills for bringing the message of Christ to life through creative art forms such as music, video, and writing? Engage in the creative planning process for weekend and midweek services and other ministry events through this internship. Be a part of the team that develops creative ideas into actionable concepts through a variety of artistic expressions. Develop your skills as you contribute in a variety of settings and venues around the church.     


Do you have the spiritual gift of teaching? We are assembling a select group of individuals who have the gifting, coachability, and motivation to engage the art and science of preparing and delivering a powerful message. Through Scripture reflection and meditation, multi-source research, interviews, writing preparation and public speaking, you’ll have the chance to take your God-given gifting to the next level. If you feel called into ministry and have received affirmation from others of your teaching gift, this may be the internship for you.   


Compassion & Justice

Seeking to see firsthand how a local church can partner within its community and globally to serve those in need? Our Compassion & Justice ministry is fighting poverty and injustice so that lives are transformed and Jesus is made known. Internships are available in both Local Compassion & Justice and Global Compassion & Justice ministries in both direct community care and creative roles.


Special-Needs Ministry

Willow Creek’s Special Friends ministry provides hands-on experience for those pursuing vocation in a ministry that serves individuals with disabilities and their families. Both students and adults with disabilities engage in developmentally appropriate activities where they can use their God-given abilities in a sensory-friendly environment. You’ll engage with special-education professionals and educators during the planning and execution of these programs.    


Children’s Ministry

Build your skills in volunteer development, small-group facilitation, and large-group program creation through an internship with Promiseland, our weekend service program ministry for infants through grade 5 at all seven locations; and Awana Midweek for Kids, our midweek service at the main campus in South Barrington. Both programs help kids connect with God through biblical teaching, worship, group discussion, and age-appropriate activities.  


Middle-School Students

Experience church leadership through the lens of student ministry with an internship in Elevate, our ministry for students in grades 6–8. You’ll help build into students at this critical age by engaging in a range of activities, including camp planning and execution, small-group facilitation, volunteer-leader development and weekend service elements. 


High-School Students

Experience church leadership through the lens of student ministry with an internship in Student Impact, our high-school ministry. Help students connect with one another, grow into who God created them to be, and go into the world to serve. You’ll engage in a range of activities, from camp planning and execution, volunteer strategy development, small-group facilitation, and weekend service elements. 


Young Adults

Be a part of our fast-growing 18- to 30-something ministry for college-age adults, young professionals, and young married couples. You’ll contribute to the development, planning, and execution of high-caliber ministry events focused on outreach, discipleship, connection, and serving the community.  



Are you passionate about carrying the message of Christ creatively and effectively to those outside the church? Be a part of the team that plans and executes Willow event and series branding, crafts all communications, develops marketing campaigns, and assists each ministry in communicating clearly. A wide range of skills are needed on the team, so if you're gifted in writing, graphic design, photography, or marketing, this internship will give you the opportunity to use and develop those abilities.