Ouachita Baptist University at New Life Church provides students an environment in which to discern their calling and career trajectory while completing an Associate of Arts degree in general studies or Christian studies. Whether they plan to enter ministry or the marketplace, their two years at OBU at NLC will be invaluable preparation.

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Vision, Mission & Values


Ouachita Baptist University at New Life Church combines the academic excellence of Ouachita Baptist University and the life-giving ministry of New Life Church to offer a truly unique educational experience. Students earn a fully accredited Associate of Arts degree while participating in hands-on ministry training with NLC pastoral staff. An OBU at NLC education prepares students to answer God’s call on their lives, whether He leads them to enter ministry, industry, or further education.


The A.A. degree is designed to prepare students for further study in baccalaureate-level college work. For this reason, the mission of OBU at NLC is to equip lifelong learners committed to life-giving ministry in the local church.


  • Believe. We experience abundant life only in response to the love of God through Jesus Christ (John 10:10).
  • Learn. Because “the earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it” (Psalm 24:1), we know our God and His world better when we strive for excellence in teaching, learning, research, and creative expression.
  • Grow. Just as Jesus grew “in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man,” we seek to grow the whole person intellectually, spiritually, physically, and socially (Luke 2:52).
  • Belong. We promote a vibrant, life-giving community where learning takes place as students share life together.
  • Serve. We help students identify their gifts and serve with and through them, to build up the body of Christ (Ephesians 4:15-16).

The Associate of Arts degree consists of 61 liberal arts hours. Of those 61 hours, 46 hours are foundational CORE curriculum, which all students are required to complete. In addition to the CORE, students will complete 15 hours of electives. Students can customize their educational experience through their choice of elective courses.

Credit hours earned in the OBU at NLC program will transfer to public and private universities in and out of state. Through the liberal arts curriculum, students will be prepared to continue their education at a four-year institution regardless of their desired major.

View Degree Summaries: 

Christian Studies (A.A.)

General Studies (A.A.)


Admissions Requirements

Students must be admitted by Ouachita Baptist University and demonstrate that they are suitable candidates for the unique program offered by OBU at NLC. Ouachita admissions requirements include:

  • Certificate of graduation from high school or GED
  • Minimum high school GPA or 2.75 on a 4.00 scale
  • Minimum ACT composite score of 20 or an SAT score of 940 (combination of reading and math scores only)


$265 per credit hour (15 hours = $3,975/semester)


$475 per semester (estimated cost)

Site Fee

Included in tuition

Registration Fee

$100 (applied toward first semester tuition payment)

Ministry Opportunities

Credit Hours

Degree Options

Top Private University in Arkansas

Why Ouachita Baptist University at New Life Church?

Because the program embraces the liberal arts tradition rather than focusing on specific majors, graduates are prepared to continue their education at any four-year institution.

Students may choose from a wide range of ministry-related electives, and they will benefit from a full schedule of hands-on ministry experience. In other words, students receive both a general Associate of Arts degree and exceptional ministry education and experience.


The purpose of the administrative office is to support the pastoral ministry through organization, effective communication, and management of systems and procedures.


A student who serves in Administration could experience the following over a two-year period:

  • A “behind-the-scenes” look at the daily operations of the New Life Church staff
  • Participate in the planning and execution of various church events such as:
    • Retreats
    • Staff meetings/events
    • Pastoral roundtables
    • Guest speaker weekends
  • Develop administrative skills such as:
    • Organization
    • Effective communication
    • Project management
    • Development and implementation of systems and procedures
    • Adaptability in an ever-changing environment

Students who serve in administration will have the opportunity to:


  • Attend All Staff Chapel
  • Shadow behind-the-scenes on guest speaker weekends, Collide Night, or Woman Night
  • Lead in a specific administrative area: guest hosting, hospitality, or staff events
  • Attend a weekly Administrative meeting with a ministry leader
  • Lead and mentor younger students by helping them get acclimated to administrative ministry


Students who serve in Creative will have the opportunity to:

  • Attend Creative staff meetings and events
  • Attend a Creative vision night
  • Participate in the full scope of a tier one project (Easter, Stage Set Week, Campus Launch, etc.)
  • Possibly take responsibility for and lead projects on behalf of Creative
  • Attend a Creative Master Class in an area of your choice



The purpose of 412 is to help students find their identity in Jesus Christ and prepare them for the next phase of their lives. 

Students who serve in 412 could experience the following over a two-year period:

  • Leadership development
    • Co-leading weekly small groups
    • Potentially joining the leadership team
    • Direct discipleship with the campus student pastor
  • Event planning
    • Monthly community building events
    • Missions (foreign and stateside)
  • Contribute to weekend services through a serve team or production


The purpose of Real Life is to help students find their place in the local church while learning how to love God and others with all they’ve got! 

Students who serve in Real Life may experience the following over a two-year period:

  • Contribute in Weekly Services
    • Emcee for worship gathering
    • Play or sing with the worship team
    • Work with production
    • Work on a serve team
  • Event Planning
    • Monthly community building events
    • Short-term local and foreign missions
  • High School Outreach
    • Attend athletic events and other school functions
    • Visit during lunches
    • Organize creative ways to serve the school
  • Leadership Development
    • Potentially joining the leadership team
    • Direct discipleship with the campus student pastor

Students who serve in 412 or Real Life will have the opportunity to:


  • Visit Real Life or 412 services and Life Groups
  • Attend and serve at Encounter or The Getaway Fall Retreat
  • Participate in a Spring Break or summer mission trip
  • Begin co-leading a Life Group or Serve Team Department
  • Attend Real Life or 412 leadership meetings
  • Begin the NLC Internship


Little LifeKid Life

The purpose of Little Life and Kid Life Ministry is to support families in creating a faith foundation for their child.

A student who serves in Little Life could experience the following over a two-year period:

  • Gain understanding of the developmental and spiritual needs of children during the formative years of early childhood
  • Participate in the prep and planning of weekend services for early childhood ministry
  • Gain knowledge in creating safe and meaningful opportunities for children during a variety of weeknight events
  • Be involved in the development of curriculum for early childhood ministry

Students who serve in Little Life will have the opportunity to:

  • Participate in weekend services once a month
  • Attend a gathering celebrating volunteers
  • Meet weekly with the Little Life pastor
  • Complete a semester project under the supervision of Little Life pastor (i.e. curriculum development, big event)

Students who serve in Kid Life will have the opportunity to:

  • Shadow a current volunteer during a Kid Life service
  • Meet with the Kid Life pastor to determine their best role in Kid Life
  • Participate in a pre-service meeting and attend a volunteer party
  • Meet regularly for development with Service Coordinator or Kid Life pastor
  • Begin the NLC Internship

The purpose of NLC Worship is to declare God and His goodness, to honor God with excellence, to encounter God personally and lead others to encounter Him, to release the songs of our house, and to believe in people.

Students who serve in Worship could have the opportunity to: 

  • Experience the vision of New Life Church and NLCworship through connection to the NLCworship community
  • Serve as a member of the worship team, gaining spiritual insight into worship leading and growing in their musical ability and understanding
  • Lead and serve other NLCworship team members as part of the NLCworship leadership team
  • Learn how to plan worship services and song sets
  • Learn music theory as it pertains to NLCworship and complete critical listening/music analysis assignments to develop a greater understanding of music
  • Receive vocal/instrumental instruction
  • Participate in the songwriting process of NLCworship
  • Learn about the technology utilized for NLCworship, such as software instruments and studio recording


The purpose of the Finance Office is to steward resources to support NLC departments and ministries as they accomplish the God-given vision of reaching the state of Arkansas. 


A student who serves in Finance over a two-year period could develop the skills and gain experience in the areas listed below:


  • Familiarity with:
    • MS Office
    • Quickbooks
    • Square software
  • Project management skills
    • Project research/idea development
    • Business case preparation
    • Presentation
    • Project Implementation
  • Accounting skills/processes


At New Life Church, we believe in the value of a soul. To show this value, we go to the ends of the earth through short-term mission trips. Missions at New Life Church is dedicated to taking responsibility for practical needs while focusing on evangelism, church planting, and training throughout the world. Our hope is to fulfill the Great Commission, sharing the love of Christ with people all around the world, in different circumstances, socioeconomic statuses, and lifestyles.

Students who serve in the Missions Department could have the opportunity to:

  • Serve in local missions
  • Lead and serve in service projects in the local community
  • Participate in overseas mission projects and trips
  • Serve alongside our Missions ministry leaders
Pastoral Leadership

OBU at NLC opens many opportunities to work and serve under pastoral leadership. Whether it is through mentorship or internship with Elevation, Real Life, 412 or other ministries at New Life Church, you have the chance to meet with and learn from our pastors.


During their first semester of coursework, students are encouraged to focus on their studies and get to know their own gifts and strengths more intimately. By their second semester, they will begin to explore the full range of ministry opportunities available at New Life Church. Throughout the second academic year, students invest in one of the following ministry teams at NLC.

Campus Housing

Students interested in living on campus must:

  • Be fully admitted
  • Complete a housing application here
  • Pay a one time $50 security deposit.

We grant housing to students based on a first-come, first-served basis. We suggest applying for housing as soon as you receive your official acceptance letter. Priority is given to freshman students who live outside of Conway. Housing selections are made at the end of every semester.

Spots are limited and competitive. We accept applications until houses are full. Applicants will be considered in the order that they apply.

The first Housing priority deadline is June 1, 2018, for the Fall 2018 semester! 

OBU at NLC housing costs $250 per month. Cost includes the following amenities:

  • Rent
  • Utilities
  • WiFi
  • Other valuable amenities

Apply to be a Resident Assistant

  1. Read about the position here.
  2. Apply here.

For more information about Campus Housing, email us at OBU@newlifechurch.tv.

Partnership between Ouachita Baptist University and New Life Church offers students a distinctive educational experience that capitalizes on each institution’s strengths.

Ouachita Baptist University ranks year after year among “America’s Best Colleges” (U.S. News & World Report and Forbes magazines). For more than 125 years, Ouachita has equipped students with a world-class Christian education in the liberal arts tradition. With students from about 30 states and 30 nations, Ouachita makes a global impact through exceptional Christian education.

New Life Church is one of the fastest-growing churches in America that is respected internationally for its innovative and life-giving approach to ministry. With 15 campuses in Arkansas, one in Florida and one in Hong Kong, NLC makes a global impact through local church ministry.

Ouachita at New Life Church students are admitted as Ouachita students, and their degree is accredited through and conferred by Ouachita. Students study in Conway at the NLC-Conway campus, where they have hands-on ministry experience with NLC pastoral staff.

In these ways and more, Ouachita at New Life Church provides an unparalleled blend of heritage and innovation.


Have a question about Ouachita at New Life Church? Want more information? Shoot our team a message!

410 Ouachita St.
Arkadelphia, AR 71998
1.800.DIAL.OBU • 870.245.5000

633 South Country Club Rd, Conway AR 72034