Youth Ministry Institute Inc.
142 E. Jackson St.
Orlando FL 32801
Contact Information
Address 142 E. Jackson St.
Orlando, FL 32801
Phone (407) 341-0855
Fax (407) 648-8625
Web and Social Media
Donate with a credit card
Mission Empowering Youth Ministers to Become Skilled and Effective Leaders
CEO/Executive Director Steve Schneeberger
Board Chair Spencer Geren
Board Chair Company Affiliation Telerx
IRS Ruling Year 2009
Financial Summary
Revenue vs Expense Bar Graph
Projected Revenue $306,700.00
Projected Expenses $306,005.00
Mission Empowering Youth Ministers to Become Skilled and Effective Leaders
1.   Certified 54 youth ministers since 2008.
2.   Job placement services help churches in their search for a youth minister.
3.   Other on-the-job youth ministry training programs are using YMI's assessment tool.
4.   Consulting with multiple denominations including Baptist, Lutheran, Anglican, Episcopal, Presbyterian, United Methodist and Congregational.
5.   Enacting strategic plan developed in 2015-2016. 

1.   Solidify systems for recruiting and funding.
2.   Diversify the length and types of training tools available to local churches. 
Independent Research has been conducted on this organization's theory of change or program effectiveness? No
1.   Each year our board of directors has a goal of raising  $40,000 from individual donors at each regional site.
2.   Develop an effective funding strategy for opening other operations in varying regions across the United States ($150,000 per region for the two year start-up).

Steve Schneeberger accepted a part-time job as a youth minister in 1985 so that he could pay his way through law school. What began as a means to an end became the end itself. Following graduation, Steve became a youth minister and not a lawyer. He quickly realized that he was ill prepared for the profession that chose him. He sought out educational opportunities that allowed him to continue working in his first full-time job. He attended an annual one-week school of youth ministry in Dallas. The education was excellent, but not often enough. He sought mentors. There weren’t many. Most youth ministers were like him. After the excitement of his new job wore off, people in the church had increasing expectations of Steve’s performance. He relied mostly on intuition, his own experience as a youth in a youth group, perseverance and stubbornness – a recipe for survival, not necessarily excellence.

 Time became the most effective teacher. He learned that the longer he stayed at a church, the greater the trust. And the greater the trust, the more teenagers were able to clearly articulate their values and beliefs before they moved into adulthood. Steve stayed for six years and, has been at his current church in Orlando since 1994.

 Along the way, Steve observed colleagues that weren’t quite as stubborn. Many were skilled yet untrained, loved young people yet failed to be appreciated. They burned out or were burned by the people in their church for not meeting the expectations of church members. As a result, churches that kept their youth minister for longer than three years were seen as unique. In the 1990s one church in Orlando had five youth ministers in seven years. Another had four in five years. Young people were the innocent victims of the high turnover rate. Something needed to change.

The Youth Ministry Institute formed in 2005 under the direction of Steve Schneeberger and a team of colleagues and volunteers who were committed to providing training and long-term support for youth ministers. Since its inception, YMI has certified 54 youth ministers in its two-year training and education program and has provided consulting services to an additional 70 churches across the country.

The Youth Ministry Institute expanded to the Midwest in 2013. Our newest regional director, Matt Vaughan, brings 18 years of youth ministry experience to YMI, including 12 years at one of the largest mainline churches in the Midwest. Matt’s commitment to long-term youth ministry makes him a great fit to establish YMI in Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, and Iowa.

A diverse board of directors and managers from a number of Christian traditions governs the Youth Ministry Institute in areas of curriculum development, program direction, and funding. It is the continuing commitment of our entire team to work with churches from a variety of Christian traditions in regions all over the United States so that their youth ministries may rise to the level of excellence.

CEO Statement What began as an idea and a hypotheses has materialized into a system that works. Many of our youth ministers say they would have quit if not had been for the Youth Ministry Institute. It is not the great instruction that saves their careers and their calling. It is the support from multiple individuals that gives them the encouragement to persevere and grow from their mistakes. The instruction and coaching simply reinforces the best practices they observe from one another and the many individuals they meet through the Youth Ministry Institute.
Board Chair Statement
CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments The Youth Ministry Institute serves metropolitan areas and rural communities in Florida, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa.
NTEE Information
Primary Organization Type Religion- Related
Primary Organization SubType Christianity
Secondary Organization Type Education
Secondary Organiztion SubType Graduate & Professional Schools
Tertiary Organization Type Youth Development
Tertiary Organization SubType Youth Development-Religious Leadership
Areas Served
Geographic Areas Served
The Youth Ministry Institute serves metropolitan areas and rural communities in Florida, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa.
HelpWhat is the organization aiming to accomplish? This is the organization's ultimate goal for intended impact.
The Youth Ministry Institute envisions healthy, vibrant and dynamic local churches with skilled and effective youth ministers who lead youth in the formation of their faith so that they will positively impact their community and world.
This is accomplished by providing over 325 hours of face-to-face instruction over a variety of practical, theological and personal development topics insuring excellence in youth ministry. Youth ministers receive monthly one-on-one and group coaching from other more experienced youth ministers. The Youth Ministry Institute provides consulting services to the local church which includes an on-site needs evaluation of the youth ministry. The overall goal is to give youth ministers the appropriate education and support so they are able to thrive in their ministry, helping young people form their faith. Increasing the tenure of youth ministers will be an appreciable result.
HelpWhat are the organization's strategies for its stated long-term goals?
Instructional training is one strategy of the Youth Ministry Institute. The practical, theological and personal development emphasis within the curriculum give youth ministers confidence and the skills to be effective in their work.
Coaching is another important strategy. Skilled and experienced youth ministers lend their wisdom, encouragement and, sometimes, grit to a peer who is nearer to the beginning of their professional work.
However, the instruction and coaching won't work if the church system is bad. Therefore, a ministry needs evaluation with a resulting strategic plan insures the church is maturing in their understanding of effective youth ministry at the same rate as the youth minister.
HelpWhat are the organization’s capabilities for doing this? What resources, capacities, and connections support its progress towards long-term goals? The collaborative work of the Youth Ministry Institute recognizes that there are many “experts”. Over 25 instructors teach for the Institute. They are professors, pastors, youth ministers and others who possess expertise in the subjects that move youth ministers to excellence. Over 35 field coaches have been employed to pass their wisdom to the next generation of youth ministers. Human eX Ventures custom developed an assessment tool that measures thirteen core competencies that help youth ministers achieve the level of excellence in their profession. There is a network of many individuals and organizations that supports and informs the work of youth ministers enrolled in the Youth Ministry Institute. This, in turn, has lasting effects on the young people they serve.
HelpHow will the organization know if it is making progress? What are the key qualitative and quantitative indicators against which the organization assesses its progress toward its intended impact?
There are many qualitative indicators. The youth ministers enrolled in the Youth Ministry Institute evaluate whether each instructor met his or her learning objectives. They are interviewed monthly to determine the quality of the coaching they are receiving. At the end of the two-year program, a final consultation between the youth minister, clergy supervisor, coach and YMI staff person determines the next action steps for the youth minister, thereby communicating that his or her development as a youth minister is ongoing.
Quantitative measures primarily include the core competency assessment, a structured interview given to the youth minister at the beginning and end of the two-year program. A 10% increase and the absence of toxic answers indicates substantial growth in striving for excellence in the profession. In 2014, graduates increased an average of 29%.  In addition, the on-site assessment evaluates the functioning of the youth ministry at the beginning, suggesting a time line of tasks resulting in the hoped for improvement of the ministry. An accounting of the successful completion of these changes provide a quantitative indicator of success.
HelpWhat has and hasn’t been accomplished so far?
80% of the youth ministers who complete the Youth Ministry Institute are still at the church that hired them or remained at their church for a minimum of five years, reaching our goal. The Youth Ministry Institute hired a coaching coordinator in 2012 to increase our productivity from our field coaches.  Attention to coaching has encouraged youth ministers to flourish since 2012.  Core competency scores have increased.  Accountability to the strategic tasks in each local church promotes a sustainable youth ministry model.
At the end of 2012, the Youth Ministry Institute expanded their job placement services to help churches post and screen applicants for a youth ministry position. Through consulting with the local church, YMI determines the "best fit" candidates and delivers those for final interviewing by the local churches. If churches select their youth ministers more carefully using proven processes and methods, then a youth minister will be more apt to stay for a greater length of time. This process is new and still being tested.
The Youth Ministry Institute expanded to the Midwest (Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa) in 2013 and is looking to expand to other regions in the future.
Instructional Training is an important part of the Youth Ministry Institute.  At monthly workshops or semi-annual week-long intensives taught by experienced practicing youth ministers, theologians, and experts in youth culture, youth ministers learn strategies, leadership principles, theology, and practical ministry ideas to guide youth in their spiritual and moral development. Each participant writes a reflective paper after each workshop, offering timely feedback on the principles learned and applied since the previous time.
In addition, participants attend two national conferences per year and read nearly twenty books on ministry, theology and leadership during their time with the Youth Ministry Institute.  
Population Served Adults
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service. The Youth Ministry Institute assesses youth ministers at the beginning of their enrollment and after they complete the two-year program using a tool that measures professional excellence via thirteen core competencies. An increase in the use of these competencies indicates the success of the program and the potential effectiveness of the youth minister.
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. Many youth ministers enter the profession with little or no formalized instruction.  An increase in ministry related degrees and certifications among practicing youth ministers will measure the long-term success of the program.  Youth ministers completing the Youth Ministry Institute gain credit towards undergraduate and graduate degree programs as well as denominational and nondenominational certification.
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact. Human eX Ventures developed the core competency interview utilizing over 30 years of experience in this field. Assessors are trained. Interviews are reviewed by two assessors with discrepancies in scoring reviewed by a third assessor.
Examples of SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success.

Bob, a youth minister in Tampa, completed the two-year instructional training program in 2010. This is what he had to say about his experiences.

“Let’s start with the monthly small groups. I learned my struggles in the ministry are not unique to me – it’s refreshing to know I am not alone. It was a place where my fellow students and I could come together and support each other.

“The montly retreats helped me realize my strengths and work on my growing edges. It was not just a time to listen to speakers, take notes, and do papers. There were several assigned readings that really helped me in my ministry.

“Youth Ministry Institute was effective – it was a great two years. The instructional retreats were like sabbaticals for me. It was not just a time to relax, spend time with friends, and get my thoughts together. I would return to Tampa feeling refreshed and full of new ideas, concepts, and tools.”

Bob recently joined the Youth Ministry Institute faculty as an instructional coach.

Description Coaching provides ongoing support to youth ministers by veterans in the field. Their experience and friendship are invaluable to another less experienced youth minister. Their monthly meetings are guided by a curriculum piece that mirrors the instructional training workshop topics, creating multi-directional input and feedback. In addition, the coach participates in a ministry needs evaluation of the church youth ministry.
Population Served Adults
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service. The coach is involved in the entire system of the church. The coach meets monthly with the youth minister and, also, communicates quarterly with the supervisor. Bi-annual on-site observations allows the coach to see the youth ministry in action with adult volunteers and young people. The coach's involvement in the Youth Ministry Architect assessment gives the coach additional insight and influence in the church system.  The short-term success of this program is measured by the content of the evaluative summaries completed by each coach.
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. Coaching broadens the base of youth ministers participating in the Youth Ministry Institute.  Over time this network will form the fabric that supports youth ministers in every geographic area.  The long-term success will be measured by the supportive relationships within each region of the state.
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact. The evaluative summaries completed by each coach after their interaction with the youth minister will provide the coaching coordinator the information to continue develop youth ministers.  Each developmental plan is customized to the needs of the individual youth minister and the needs of his or her church.
Examples of SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success.
Emily, a youth minister, grew up in Chicago and moved to Florida to be near her nephews.She has a communications degree from a Christian college and was active in her own youth group growing up. Soon after she was hired by her church, her pastor took a leave of absence for an undetermined amount of time and the financial future for the church looked bleak. Emily was feeling helpless, alone and ill prepared to deal with the stress of her new employment situation. After one year, on the verge of resigning, her church enrolled her in the Youth Ministry Institute. She was matched with Kathy, a youth minister with 17 years of experience. Kathy's advice and availability allowed Emily to gain confidence in her abilities. Emily says her coach has been the main reason she survived initially and, then, thrived as she distanced herself from her initial year.  
Emily is now an experienced and confident youth minister with in a large church.  She is also a member of the YMI Board of Directors. 
Description Creating a healthy environment for youth ministry to thrive is key. Consulting services can vary from region to region.  Consultations can include a pre-hiring focus group, creating a profile of the soon-to-be-hired youth minister based on personality characteristics, leadership style and ministry focus or training for adult volunteers. In addition, the regional directors travel across their regions annually visiting with over 50 churches, meeting new youth ministers and pastors, building a network and support system of like minded professionals.
Population Served Adults
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service. The short term outcomes will be most apparent in the pre-hiring consulting groups YMI conducts. Churches rave about the ease with which they are guided through the hiring process and how YMI helped them to define exactly what the church needed in its next employee.
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. Consulting success is measured by satisfied church leadership.  Referrals and repeat business indicates the advice being given is appreciated.
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact. When YMI is hired to conduct the entire search, follow up emails are sent at the year anniversary to check on the satisfaction of the church and youth minister.
Examples of SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success. In 2006 a church in Brandon, Florida, called the Youth Ministry Institute for help.  They had been through a number of successive negative youth minister experiences.  They needed an opinion outside of their system.  The executive director agreed to do a 90 minute pre-hiring focus group for their key church staff and volunteer leaders.  It was free and part of the strategy of the Youth Ministry Institute, helping churches in need while at the same time promoting the value of training, coaching and support that the Youth Ministry Institute offers.  The church leaders were able to define the attributes of the youth minister they wished to hire.  They hired a person who matched and enrolled him in the Youth Ministry Institute.  The church was willing to help the youth minister grow into the new role at their church.  Three years later, after he was certified as completing the Youth Ministry Institute, his supervisor reflected on the value of the entire process.  She said that from the beginning consultation, it was apparent the church needed to have a new approach to youth ministry.  The Youth Ministry Institute helped shape that approach.  Now they are experiencing the most dynamic period of youth ministry in their church history.
CEO Comments We are seeking an evaluation of the Youth Ministry Institute curriculum by the American Council on Education (ACE).  Once complete, a student who completes the Youth Ministry Institute may redeem college credit earned at any academic institution that recognizes ACE standards.
Board Chair
Board Chair Spencer Geren
Company Affiliation Telerx
Term June 2015 to July 2017
Board Co-Chair
Board Co-Chair
Board Members
NameCompany AffiliationsStatusCertificate*
Spencer Geren Telerx, Orlando, FLVotingNo
Lisa Greenwood Texas Methodist Foundation, Austin, TXVoting
Joni Hernly Hernly Associates, Lawrence, KSVoting
Ryan Hussey Saint Luke's Health System, Kansas City, MOVoting
Rev. Tim Nunez Diocese of Central Florida, Orlando, FLVotingNo
Steve Schneeberger Youth Ministry Institute Florida, Orlando, FLVoting
Matt Vaughan Youth Ministry Institute Midwest, Prairie Village, KSVoting
Linn Vermeer Black and Veatch, Overland Park, KSVoting
Jason Williamson Heritage United Methodist Church, Clearwater, FLVotingNo
*This individual has been awarded a Certificate in Orientation to Board Service by the Edyth Bush Institute for Philanthropy & Nonprofit Leadership at Rollins College,
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 0
Board Ethnicity
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 9
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0
Written Board Selection Criteria Yes
Written Conflict of Interest Policy Yes
Percentage of Monetary Contributions 100%
Percentage of In-Kind Contributions 100%
Constituency Includes Client Representation No
Standing Committees
Standing Committees
Committee Name
CEO Comments
Our Board of Directors has been meeting since December 2005.  We formalized our board governance when we became incorporated in October 2009.  Our selection policy was passed in February 2015.
In addition, each regional site has a Board of Managers providing oversight to the regional director and that particular region. 
CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director Steve Schneeberger
Term Start Dec 2005
Experience Steve Schneeberger, a youth minister since 1985, leads educational workshops at national youth minister conferences.  He is the founder of the Youth Ministry Institute.
CEO Salary Range $50,001 - $75,000
Number of Full Time Staff 3
Number of Part Time Staff 0
Number of Volunteers 0
Number of Contract Staff 35
Staff Retention Rate 100%
Senior Staff
Title Coaching Coordinator
Experience/Biography Kathy has been a youth minister for over 20 years and brings a high level of professionalism and care to this position.
Title Regional Director - YMI Midwest
Experience/Biography Matt has been a youth minister for 17 years, serving at one of the largest mainline churches in the Midwest.
Organization has Fundraising Plan? No
Organization has Strategic Plan? Yes
Years Strategic Plan Considers 2
Date Strategic Plan Adopted Mar 2016
Management Succession Plan No
Organization Policies And Procedures Yes
HUMANeX Ventures developed the Core Competencies Assessment, used in the developmental work with youth ministers.  It is also used in the screening of youth ministry candidates for job placement.  In 2015, SOUL of Memphis, TN, and the Center for Youth Ministry Training of Nashville, TN, began using the Core Competencies Assessment in developing the youth ministers they are training. The Youth Ministry Institute administers the assessment, producing a narrative summary of each youth minister for these organizations.
CEO Comments
State Registration Yes
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Expiration Month Dec
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Expiration Year 2016
Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year Start Jan 01, 2016
Fiscal Year End Dec 31, 2016
Form 990s
IRS Letter of Determination
IRS Determination Letter
Detailed Financials
Expense Allocations
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$244,860$205,233$186,520
Administration Expense$65,709$77,347$65,526
Fundraising Expense$9,170$8,597$0
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.001.030.97
Program Expense/Total Expenses77%70%74%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue9%6%0%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$45,305$46,779$39,335
Current Assets$45,305$46,779$39,335
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$0$0$0
Total Net Assets$45,305$46,779$39,335
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201520142013
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountEarned Revenue $214,064Earned Revenue $165,285Earned Revenue $136,238
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountFoundations, Corporation and Individuals $82,151Individuals, Foundations, Corporations $121,981Individuals, Foundations, Corporations $108,803
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountSpecial Events $22,050Special Events $11,355 --
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities------
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
CEO Comments While doing business since December 2005 under the umbrella of a local church, the Youth Ministry Institute was incorporated in October 2009, receiving non-profit status from the Internal Revenue Service in April 2010.  YMI became a fully independent non-profit by vote of its board of directors in 2015 and declaration of the IRS in 2016.
Foundation Comments
2013: Financial figures taken from IRS form 990.
Prior to 2013, financial figures taken from IRS form 990EZ. 
All contributions are included under total for Individuals, as they were not separated on IRS form 990EZ or 990.
Organization did not complete an audit.
Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster
Notes Programs listed here are those that are only activated during a disaster. Some organizations have unified budgeting and do not budget by program. Because of this, some budget fields may be blank or represent an approximation. Organization describes previous experience during the immediate response, recovery or rebuilding phases following a disaster.