Student Worship Academy

About Us

Our Leadership

Kenny Lamm
Seth Ellington
Beth Hunnicutt
Joshua Waggener
Larry Dickens
Richie Kingsmore

Our Coaches

The following individuals will be the coaches for our musicians, digital artists, and technicians. We are grateful for their willingness to serve our community and share their gifts.

David Calvert, Acoustic Guitar
Dale Baker, Drums
Giles Blankenship, Male Vocals
Harold Greene, Electric Guitar
Jonathan Boggs, Digital Arts
Mark Brady, AV Technology
Patsy Chesnut, Female Vocals
Dr. Ran Whitley, Orchestra
Zach Jones, Keyboard & Pads
TBA, Bass Guitar

Our Philosophy

The Student Worship Academy is a ministry of the Baptist State Convention of NC. We are raising up the next generation of true worship leaders as we pursue a greater awakening of Christ-centered worship and unity in the church. Leading worship is not about being on a stage, having great talent, or putting on a show for others to experience. Christ-centered worship begins by engaging with God daily in a way that He initiates and only He makes possible. It comes to a head when believers gather together under His Word, encouraging one another in faith and elevating the name of Jesus in praise. Being a true worship leader in this type of community, whether up front onstage or in the back behind the scenes, is submitting to the power of the Holy Spirit and using His giftings to focus the hearts and minds of worshippers on the glory of God in response to His loving revelation to the world—Jesus.

Our Vision

An awakening of Christ-centered worship that unifies the church.

In His revelation to the apostle John, God gave us a glimpse into what eternal worship in heaven will look like—a multitude of believers from every people, nation, tribe, and language, washed in the blood of the Lamb and serving in the presence of God. In anticipation of this, the worship that pleases God on earth must be no less Christ-centered and no less unified.  We see a world where our worship is intergenerational, intercultural, and transcends any individual style or preference. If we embrace this model of worship in our churches, then we will be responding to Jesus’ plea for all believers to be unified by loving God and one another.

Revelation 7; John 17:20-26

Our Purpose

To raise up the next generation of true worship leaders.

The true worshippers that God is seeking are those who would worship in spirit and truth, not confined to a physical space built by man but rather centered around the body and blood of Jesus. To see this true worship rise up in our churches, the gospel compels us to teach these things to the next generation so that they can lead others to encounter the once for all sacrifice of Jesus Christ and center their lives around Him.

John 2:19-22; John 4:23-24; 2 Corinthians 5:14-16

Our Mission

To equip and empower students to use music, art, and technology to engage the church in Christ-centered worship.

In equipping students, we will give them practical training and tools they need to be able to serve the church well. In empowering students, we will help them understand the gifts God has given them and encourage them to embrace the confidence we have in Jesus. To engage the church, we will send students out with a passion for Christ-centered worship and a desire to use music, art, and technology to awaken this passion in others.

Ephesians 4:11-16; 1 Timothy 4:12; Hebrews 10:19-22

Core Values

We are a community that values…

Corporate Worship

Our response as the community of God. On the foundation of Jesus, we gather to be built up in our church communities as living stones so that we can proclaim His excellencies and sing His praises together. As God does this work in our midst and enables us to serve one another and Him, we share in the benefits of restored relationships with Him and one another. 1 Peter 2:4-9; Colossians 3:16-17; Hebrews 10:23-25


Our response to the beauty of God. We were made in His image to glorify Him. As all creation resounds praises of the Creator, we can join with our heartfelt expressions in producing songs, art, and sounds which point to His beauty and perfection. We use His giftings to lead others creatively so they can engage with God in renewed ways. Psalm 96


Our response to the infinitude of God. He is holy, eternal, and more vast than we could ever comprehend. His ways and thoughts are higher than ours, yet He has made Himself known to us and given us the chance to marvel at His countless wonders. Curiosity rooted in faith and humility seeks the joys of learning and discovery as a means to knowing and serving God. Romans 11:33-36; Isaiah 55:9-11


Our response to the mission of God. More than just developing musicians, we are training students to be disciples of Christ who use their creative gifts to serve Him. Our coaching models servant leadership—that we are not worthy to lead if we are not willing to serve. This cohesive learning community will be held together by sharing in the love of God through intergenerational discipleship. Matthew 28:18-20; Psalm 71:17-18


Our response to the love of God. The curse of sin separated us from God and also separated us from one another. As God has sought to reconcile to himself all things through the peace made on the cross through Jesus, He invites us to join as ministers of reconciliation and see fallen people become new creations in Christ. We now enjoy a new connection with God and our fellow believers. Genesis 3; Matthew 22:34-40; Colossians 1:19-20; 2 Corinthians 5:17-19

Continuous Worship

Our response as worshippers of God. The ongoing giving of ourselves to God as living sacrifices every day as we abide in grace and do what is pleasing to Him. This total life-response to God transforms all aspects of our existence and intersects heart and mind, soul and strength, affection and attitude, action and intention, delight and duty. Jesus is the only reason we can experience this relationship. Romans 12:1-2; Mark 12:30