Men of Standard Profile: Ken Steorts

From Our 2014 Men’s Issue | Click Here For The Full Issue 

Ken Steorts, President of Visible Music College

Men of Standard Profile: Ken Steorts, Visible Music College President

Among those visionaries in Memphis whose work is changing the city spiritually and culturally, Ken Steorts has a prominent place.  As President of Visible Music College, Ken is creating a dynamic culture of artistic and spiritual growth that is now pouring out into the city’s local churches and music stages.

Ken Steorts created Visible Music College with the goal of training the next generation of artists in music, discipleship, worship and ministry. Ken was the founding guitarist, songwriter, and road manager of the rock band Skillet. While touring with the band he saw a large number of young Christian musicians with great character but little skill instruction or with great skill but little spiritual leadership. Ken envisioned an education center where academic and vocational study of music would be combined with character-building discipleship and community.  In the winter of 1999, Ken left the band to create a program that could train well-trained, passionate musicians and world-changers.

During the spring of 2000, Ken Steorts and mentor Rick Miller traveled to Coventry, England to observe Nexus Academy of Music Ministry, an inspiring model of the kind of school Ken envisioned in Memphis.  Visible Community School of Music and Worship Arts was launched in fall 2000 as a ministry of Grace Covenant Church (Lifelink Church) with a nine-month training program. Twenty-one students from across North America and the United Kingdom were enrolled in the 2000-2001 charter class. The college began pursuing national accreditation with TRACS (Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools) in 2003 and received formal accreditation in fall 2009. On May 14, 2005 Visible Music College granted its first three Bachelor of Ministry degrees.

Ken’s vision has afforded hundreds of Christian musicians to receive training for their callings, dozens of churches are being filled with talented songwriters, producers, and worship leaders, and the place of art in the Christian faith is both broadening and deepening with each new semester at Visible.

After nine years of growth, the original campus in Lakeland, Tennessee became too small and Visible Music College began a $6 million capital campaign to move the college and its dormitories to downtown Memphis. Visible Music College acquired the iconic C&I Bank Building in downtown Memphis as its education center in 2009. During renovation classes were moved to Lifelink Church in the Cooper-Young District in Memphis. The college moved into to the downtown campus in late Summer 2011. The campus includes four floors of performance, practice, classroom and administrative space. Future plans include renovation of the basement into recording and production studios and the top floor as a Library and event space. Visible Music College is committed to a philosophy of education that prioritizes community through teaching, accountability, and discipleship. Therefore, enrollment growth will be achieved through partners and teaching sites around the United States and world. Schal Werk Stadt, a partner campus in Holden, Germany, opened in Fall 2011.

Ken’s vision has afforded hundreds of Christian musicians to receive training for their callings, dozens of churches are being filled with talented songwriters, producers, and worship leaders, and the place of art in the Christian faith is both broadening and deepening with each new semester at Visible.

To find out more about Ken Steorts and the Visible Music College, visit www.visible.edu

 

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  1. Pingback: 2014 Men's Issue | Divine Magazine

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