Building the next generation of ministry leaders.

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About Us

Scholars is a year-long spiritual and leadership development program that exists to equip the next generation of diverse ministry leaders in the Church and marketplace. We build into passionate young followers of Christ in order to maximize personal, spiritual, and professional growth.

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“For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
- Ephesians 2:10

What Our Alumni are saying about Scholars

black and white photo of scholar Myles Edwards

Myles Edwards

"Scholars grew me both spiritually and professionally, allowing me to learn new ways of thinking and structuring my life to reflect Christ in all I do."

black and white photo of scholar Olivia Smith

Olivia Smith

"The Scholars program gave me endless opportunities to learn from Crossroads staff, and receive real responsibility with room to fail. Through the program my eyes were opened to see the leader God has created me to be."

black and white photo of scholar DaManuel Montgomery

DaManuel Montgomery

"I'm thankful that Scholars has given me skills that have helped me grow as an individual and in my professional life. This program will help design your life to look like Jesus and unique for yourself."


About The Program

This one-year program uses hands-on experience, community, mentorship, and content to grow young leaders toward their full potential.

Who can be a Scholar?

  • 18-25 years old
  • Christ follower
  • Qualifications
    • Demonstrated prior commitment to Crossroads
    • Anticipated future commitment to Crossroads
    • Clearly demonstrated leadership potential
  • Preferred pre-requisites
    • Completion of Crossroads Students Influencers program
    • Completion of Crossroads College Discipleship School
    • Nomination by Crossroads staff
  • Candidates not currently living near a Crossroads location will have access to an online cohort

What are the core components of the program?
  • Hands-on Experience: access to paid internship experience with Crossroads (or similar volunteer leadership opportunities)
  • Weekly Large Group: dedicated ministry and marketplace leaders teach on topics that equip Scholars.
  • Weekly Small Groups: Scholars are placed in a small group to foster community and personal application of content.
  • Mentorship: We assign a 1-on-1 mentor who will intentionally invest in each Scholar during their time in the program.
  • Adventure: Guaranteed fun and bonding. We’ll go on a retreat to kick off the year and a GO Trip over Christmas break.

What is the time commitment?
Each Scholars class begins in August and runs through early May, with occasional holiday breaks throughout.

Scholars must commit up to 5 hours a week for the program:
  • 2 hours total for large and small group experiences
  • 2 hours for pre-group studies
  • 1 hour of mentorship

Other commitments beyond the weekly commitment:
  • Adventures like retreats and a GO Trip (exact dates will be communicated in the application process)
  • Internships will vary in dates and work hours (generally, internships are 6 to 29 hours per week)

Meet the Team

Brian Kremer | Director, Scholars

As a visionary leader, Brian believes investing in young leaders is vital. Everyone is given gifts and God intends to use them, so his goal is to get leaders in the spaces & places to be most effective as they develop to their full potential. Brian lives on the East Side of Cincinnati with his wife, Ella, and their sons. If you want to see him light up (and talk too much), just chat him up craft coffee or FC Cincinnati.

Andrea Stiles | Project Manager

As a hard worker and a prayerful leader, Andrea is our glue in the Scholars Program as the Project Manager, running our Mentorship program, Alumni Network, Team Coordination and much more. Andrea lives in Anderson with her husband, John and kiddos, Matt, Clare, Sammy and puppy Noble. Her family is all about sports, so in her free time there is a lot of football, cheerleading, lacrosse, tennis and baseball. Go Team!

Jamie Simms | Director, Leader Academy

With a passion for developing future leaders, Jamie is leading the charge of the overall Crossroads' Leader Academy and Scholars might be her favorite part of Leader Academy (don't tell!). Jamie is a daughter, sister, aunt, pastor. Rocks some hair. Always ready to learn, push, and challenge, believing that Jesus can AND WILL set us all free. Bring on all the joy!


Apply for Scholars

Apply to be a part of the 2023-2024 Scholars class now. If you fall outside of the application window, please email us at for questions or updates on future opportunities.

Apply Now

Side note: Parents, please don’t apply for your kid. If they’re the leader you believe they are, they’ll be able to apply on their own.



Crossroads diversity is about more than percentages. It’s about having male and female voices from diverse backgrounds in positions of leadership. We believe we are called to be a multi-ethnic church and our pastors and leaders are living proof. Likewise, we want our Scholars to represent the Kingdom with diversity of ethnicity, gender, and personality.

Check out our Crossroads Jobs Page for more about Staff Diversity, Diversity in Leadership, Foundational Beliefs, Culture and I Promise.





How’d it all start?
In 2016, Kathy Beechum, a strong leader and advocate within Crossroads, felt convicted to establish a pipeline program for diverse young leaders in ministry. With the funding in place, she gave full authority to an original Crossroads founder and current Crossroads Spiritual Board member, Brian Wells. After extensive research and content creation, Brian and his wife, Nancy, launched the Uptown and Oxford hubs in the fall of 2017. Scholars has now grown to over 200 alumni since its inception.

What’s the timeline from when I apply all the way through the rest of the program?

  • March: Applications for the next class go live
  • April-July: Rolling applications and interviews. Offers extended, mentor matching begins.
  • August: Kickoff retreat in early August, followed by our weekly meetings beginning.
  • September-December: First semester of content focused on identifying gifts & growing as a leader, internship matching
  • Winter Break: GO Trip
  • January-April: Second semester content focused on practical applications for leadership, Spring internships
  • May: Conclusion of the program with celebration and debrief
  • May-July following your completion of the program: Optional additional internship experiences

Is everyone accepted into the program?
The short answer is no. Really, we take the admission process and our discernment very seriously. This program requires maturity, discipline, availability and a personal relationship with Christ. We want to set Scholars up for success in this demanding program. We also encourage individuals to reapply in future years with feedback.

How many scholars are enrolled in the program?
Scholars classes have varied between 25-40 members, but that’s all up to God.

Do I need to be able to attend in-person meetings weekly in Cincinnati?
No. We’ve had success with cohorts of Scholars that meet fully online (Online Scholars). Each year, we’ll have a Cincinnati cohort that meets in person, but we’ll continue to increase opportunities for Online Scholars, including access to remote internship opportunities. We can also delay internship opportunities until you can spend time working at a physical Crossroads location. If you are not near a physical Crossroads site, do not let that deter you from applying.

What is the attendance policy for Scholars?
We work hard to support every Scholar and collaborate for optimal time management. However, more than two unexcused absences is grounds for dismissal from the program.

Do you have to attend Crossroads to apply for Scholars?
Not to apply. All are welcome to apply. We ask folks new to Crossroads to explore who we are and check out the Seven Hills We Die On before applying. If you like what you see, great! Please apply and then during the interview, we will dig into the commitment to the program and your engagement with Crossroads during it.

Is financial assistance available?
While it does not cost anything to be a part of the program, there are times Scholars will spend money on different experiences throughout - like the annual GO Trip. We strive to eliminate financial barriers for potential leaders and assist them in the fundraising process for the GO Trip. If you have concerns, please still apply and express this in the Financial Need section of the application. We will be able to explore what support could look like in the course of the interview.