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Student Story: Terri

Blog — 18th March 2019

NTC Glasgow Learning Centre has a long and rich heritage, providing Christian theological education in the heart of the east end of Glasgow. We spoke to Terri one of the current students studying on the youth and community programme to ask her about her experiences, both in the classroom and during her practical placements.

When Terri began her first year placement with Glasgow City Mission, she acknowledges she was a little bit spoiled and closed-minded.

As part of the outreach team, Terri walks the streets of Glasgow to meet, talk with and listen to people on the margins of society – the poor, the homeless and those trapped in addiction. She also cooks breakfast, makes sandwiches and listens to the guests who come into the mission’s center. Through these experiences, Terri says God has been teaching her humility.

“I now truly appreciate all the things in my life as a gift – where I live, my heating, the food I eat,” she says.

Terri is studying for her Bachelor’s Degree in Theology: Youth and Community through Nazarene Theological College-Manchester, and attends the NTC, Glasgow Learning Center. In addition to her two days of placement each week, she attends a weekly placement seminar where she reflects along with other students about their experiences while on placement.

“It is really that simple,” she says. “We talk and we listen.”

“I really enjoy the time of sharing with other students about our experiences – both the good and challenging bits,” she says. “We are asked to write reflections on our experiences, kind of like a journal. This is really helping to see things around me differently, from a completely new perspective.”

What she’s learning in the classroom helps her feel empowered as a person, and in her practice.

For instance, Terri struggled to connect with one of the guests at the Glasgow City Mission. She was unable to break through the person’s closed demeanor. This particular guest was not interested in any form of conversation. But over the past few months, Terri has patiently focused on being a presence and being available, simply being there. Over time the person slowly began opening up: talking about God, their beliefs, faith, and began to develop a trust in Terri.

“It is really that simple,” she says. “We talk and we listen.”