Tips on Choosing a DTS

Tips on Choosing a YWAM DTS.


Tips on Choosing a DTS 

Why Do a DTS? 

Are you unsure about your next steps in life? There is never the need to rush into a new phase of life, whether it’s college, a career, or even the mission field. Not only is participating in a Youth With a Mission Discipleship Training School incredibly beneficial for those interested in world-wide missions, but it’s also an extremely impactful experience for any young adult, whether you know what you want to do with your life or have no idea. Doing a YWAM DTS allows you to take several months to dive deeper into your faith, discover who God is, encounter Him in a new way, and learn more about yourself while growing so much in the process. In these amazing five months of your life, you can experience heart transformation, a new revelation of God’s love for you, and growth in your relationship with Jesus and others! 

Things to Consider While Choosing a DTS 

There are several factors to consider when deciding on the best YWAM DTS to attend. The decision process can be difficult with so many Discipleship Training School bases worldwide! It’s extremely helpful to narrow down your choices based on personal preferences and especially on where God is calling you to go. 

For example, electives–are you choosing a DTS based on whether or not that location offers electives and what elective options they have? If so, narrow your search to YWAM DTS locations that offer the specific elective(s) you are interested in, whether it’s art, sports and fitness, photography or worship. Electives are ways to grow in your gifts and talents and also learn how to glorify God and minister to others through these gifts, talents and interests. 

Does the size of the YWAM location affect your decision? Every YWAM base varies in number of students and staff. Some are much larger, with hundreds of members, and some are more family-sized bases, where you get to know the people around you. There are pros and cons to both large and small bases. Within larger bases, you can meet so many different people, and there might be a greater variety of ministry opportunities. In smaller bases, however, there is more room for one-on-one discipleship and close relationships with staff as well as students. In which environment do you feel your faith would most flourish, and do you feel you could grow more? 

Location is another important factor in choosing a YWAM Discipleship Training School. For example, do you prefer living in the city or the country? Are you looking for a base in the mountains or by the ocean? Would you rather stay in your own country or explore another nation? Basing your search off of the type of location will help as well! 

Cost might also impact your decision. You may want to attend the cheapest YWAM DTS so that you do not need to raise as much financial support. However, it is important to seek God in this matter, and trust that He will provide the funds you need before letting cost determine your decision. 

These are just a few significant factors to consider as you make this decision. Most importantly, however, you should seek the Lord and where He desires for you to go. Spend prayer, asking Him to guide you in finding the best YWAM DTS location for you. Trust in the Lord and His ways; He will lead you and give you peace and clarity in your decision. 

How I Chose My DTS Location 

I, for example, chose the YWAM Asheville DTS based on the electives they offered. I specifically searched for bases that offered an art elective and then narrowed down my options until I decided on YWAM Asheville. I also considered base location and outreach locations and selected a base that sent students on international outreaches versus outreaches that just traveled around the United States. 

Ways to Prepare For a Successful DTS 

-Heart Posture. To have the best DTS experience and learn and receive from the Lord during this time, it is important to prepare your heart and mind. You will not be ready to receive what the Lord has for you unless you come into DTS with open hands and a heart of surrender. Start setting aside time daily to spend with the Lord and in His Word, and let Him begin to work in you.

-Ask questions! Communicate with the staff from the DTS locations you are looking into! Reach out to those bases and ask them any questions about their DTS, from how big it is, what outreaches look like, what the community atmosphere will be like, or what the DTS Course Schedule will include. It doesn’t hurt to ask questions and be as informed as you can about that location; that way you can prepare and know what to expect in your DTS experience. 

-Fundraise! In order to be fully funded on time, start support-raising right away! Contact friends and family to see if they would be interested in partnering with you financially. Seek the Lord for guidance and creative ways to fundraise for DTS, and don’t wait till the last minute! 


Youth With a Mission DTS is a life-changing experience and an incredible five to six months of your life. It is a place to encounter a deeper relationship with Christ, make incredible friendships and memories, and grow in so many ways. Choosing the right YWAM location is a huge and important decision to make. Do your research, ask plenty of questions, and continuously seek the Lord throughout your decision process! If you follow where the Lord is leading you, it will be such a fruitful experience.


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