Frequently Asked Questions
When is the conference?
The conference is held during the weekdays Monday through Friday; in 2018, the times were from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. In addition, there is a kick-off event for the whole family on Sunday evening; the keynote speaker opens the event at this approximately two-hour session. At least one other evening event is usually held with one of the speakers, along with a closing event (cookout/graduation) on Friday (for all students and their families).
Where is the conference, and who sponsors it?
Think Well is sponsored and hosted by CrossLife Community Church. The address of the church is 1410 Old Brook Rd., Charlottesville, VA 22901. (We are located at the corner of Rio Road and Old Brook, about a half-mile from Fashion Square Mall.)
Who speaks at the conference?
CrossLife Pastor Todd Cothran moderates the conference and teaches some of the sessions. There is a keynote speaker plus other speakers, including several from the local area/region, with expertise in a certain area(s). Keynote speakers in the past have included John Stonestreet, president of Colson Center for Christian Worldview and co-host of BreakPoint Radio, and Del Tackett, creator of The Truth Project. The 2018 conference speakers are listed here and the 2016 speakers are here.
What topics are covered?
The topics vary by year. The 2018 schedule is here and the 2016 schedule is here; you can view these for a taste of the topics we cover. We seek to be as comprehensive as our time allows, recognizing that God and his Word speak to all areas of life. We have covered basic apologetics topics such as the reliability of the Bible, the case for the Resurrection, Jesus as the only way, the Christian worldview vis-à-vis other worldviews and religions, science and faith, beauty and music/art, and biblical archaeology. We also cover current and personal worldview issues, such as marriage and family, gender and identity, poverty, religious liberty, civic engagement, the sanctity of human life, and media/entertainment and technology. Discipleship, evangelism, and living a purposeful life are covered as well.
What is the format of the conference?
Refer to the 2018 schedule as a sample format. Time is allotted for:
Welcome and worship in song (first thing in the morning)
Speakers’ sessions (one-hour lectures with a range of interactivity depending on the speaker)
Breakout activities/small-group sessions
Brief times for personal reflection at the end of each talk
Mid-day lunch break plus shorter morning and afternoon breaks
Questions About Who Can Attend
What ages are allowed to attend?
The conference is recommended for ages 14–22. Younger participants may be allowed at the discretion of the parents after a discussion with Pastor Cothran.
Can parents/guardians attend?
This conference is first and foremost for young people. The kick-off evening, another evening event, and the final cookout/closing event are all open to parents and other family members. In addition, Monday through Friday, there are overflow rooms at CrossLife (a larger fellowship hall—for adults only—and a smaller children’s nursery room for adults with young children) where speakers’ talks can be watched live on TV monitors during the week.
Is there child care?
There is no child care during the weekdays of the conference. Child care is usually offered during the evening events. If you are an adult who wishes to hear speakers from the overflow room during the weekday sessions, please keep young kids out of the main sanctuary and foyer so as to minimize distractions for both speakers and conference attendees.
Is it appropriate for a nonbeliever to attend this conference?
Yes! While the conference certainly is aimed at young believers wanting to strengthen their faith, and to learn why they believe what they believe and how to defend their faith, we by all means do not want to turn away those who have not yet professed faith in Jesus Christ. We do ask, if a student attends and is not a believer, that the parent(s) makes sure he or she is willingly attending (not being forced) and is open to the Christian faith to the extent necessary so that he or she will not become a distraction or obstacle to others attending.
How much does it cost?
The regular registration cost for the 2018 summer conference was $120 per student. The early-bird rate (register by April 15) was $100 per student. The 2020 conference rates will be announced prior to registration beginning. There are discounts for those with multiple members of the same family attending.
What if I cannot afford the full price?
Financial assistance is available on a need basis. Please speak to Pastor Cothran regarding assistance that you may need: 719-321-8565 (cell) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is included in the cost?
Registration, a conference notebook, a conference T-shirt (please indicate size when registering), pen, and other conference materials; also, snacks, beverages, at least one catered lunch (there were two in 2018), and a closing event cookout are included in the cost. (Other lunches are not included and should be brought from home.)
I’m a parent/sibling and want a Think Well T-shirt. How can I get one?
A limited number of T-shirts from past conferences are available for purchase for $5 each (while supplies last). Please call 434-973-9162 or send an email to email@example.com to request one.
How and when do I register?
Registration will occur from this website starting in early 2020. Be sure you’re signed up for Think Well email updates so you will be in the know about registration and other Think Well news.
Is there a registration deadline?
Registration closes 10 days before the conference starts, or whenever we reach 120 attendees (whichever comes first).
What if I can’t or don’t want to register online?
Registering online is secure and poses no risk. However, if you strongly prefer to register by paper instead of online, you can do so. To request a hard-copy registration form, call 434-973-9162 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Are there any refunds?
A refund is available in the case of an extenuating circumstance that prevents a student from attending after already registering. Please contact us if this occurs.
What if a student cannot attend all days of the conference or needs to miss parts of it?
While we strongly urge that students attend every session all five days (along with the kick-off session on Sunday), we understand that there may be circumstances in which someone has to miss part of a day or a whole day (or more). The registration cost will be the same regardless of whether a student attends all sessions/days or not.
After I register, then what?
You will receive a pre-conference email one week before the start of the conference. That email will contain all you need to know before the kick-off event. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact conference director Jenny Abel (email@example.com / 619-517-8958) or Pastor Cothran (firstname.lastname@example.org / 719-321-8565.
How can I find out who else is attending from my area so I can carpool or arrange transportation?
We do not offer transportation to the conference, but other families/attendees may be able to give you or your student a ride. If you desire to carpool, please contact conference director Jenny Abel (email@example.com) at least two weeks prior to the start of the conference.