Make College Count

A Faithful Guide to Life and Learning

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Discover the way to true success at college--and beyond

There's more to college than classes, credits, and a nonstop social life. It's more than getting a degree to improve your job prospects. College is a time where you develop into the person you will be for the rest of your life. Make College Count will help you make the most of your time in college. It encourages you to ask the big questions, like

You want your college years to count. This book shows you how to make that a reality.


"For years I have been looking for the right book to give to Christian high school grads: readable, real, honest, grace-focused, Christ-centered, and practical. Finally, I've found just the ticket--Make College Count is that book."--Chap Clark, author of Hurt: Inside the World of Today's Teenagers; professor of youth, family, and culture, Fuller Theological Seminary

"Christian college students often hear a lot about what to avoid during their college years. So it's refreshing to encounter a book that explains what students should embrace in college. It's clear that Derek Melleby understands the world of today's collegiates. His book proves the point as he rolls out wise and practical advice that will equip young people to make the most of their college experience and graduate as mature, effective followers of Jesus Christ."--Joseph M. Stowell, president, Cornerstone University

"Make College Count is just right! What Derek Melleby has done is find a way to come alongside someone on the way to college and offer guidance about things that matter most. His own rich vision of learning and life threads its way throughout, giving windows into the challenge and complexity of the college years with a playful seriousness that feels like that of a friend who honestly cares how it all turns out."--Steven Garber, director of The Washington Institute for Faith, Vocation & Culture, author of The Fabric of Faithfulness

"Perhaps there's not a more significant watershed event in a young person's life than high school graduation and the transition to college. But research and experience point to the fact many transitioning students either forget to or consciously decide not to pack up their faith with the rest of the stuff they are taking to college. The university years are the perfect time for students to grow in their faith. But by the time they have a diploma in hand, many have allowed the distractions of life and idols of our culture to grow them away from their faith. Make College Count offers an accurate preview of college life, while encouraging and equipping students to thoughtfully make the most of college (and the rest of their lives) by embracing a real and vibrant faith that's not an extracurricular add-on, but a foundation for all of life. This could be the most important book a student reads during their college years."--Walt Mueller, president, Center for Parent/Youth Understanding

"College students enroll in certain courses, regardless of where they go to school or what they choose for a major. I'm thinking of Faith 100--What do I believe?, Money 101--How do I handle finances?, Identity 102--Who am I really?, Discernment 103--How do I navigate the hard choices of life? and Life 104--What kind of habits and patterns will shape my life? Of course, for some, there are the added electives, Laundry 404--Can I mix darks and lights? and Party 247--What can I possibly mix with alcohol?
As a college professor myself, having watched twenty-eight classes of freshmen arrive on our campus, I can attest that these courses can be pretty tough and that, for some students, the tuition they pay to learn these lessons is quite high. But, with this great little book, Make College Count, Derek Melleby offers a kind of CliffsNotes study guide for these critical years. His knowledge of college students allows him to write convincingly about both the adventures and the perils of college life. With good humor, savvy realism, sound biblical counsel, and practical advice, this book offers valuable insights for those who find themselves facing the big questions and the hard tests for the real-world curriculum of college life. And it's a short enough book that college students are likely to actually read it!"--Duffy Robbins, professor of youth ministry, Eastern University

"I am always leery when I pick up a book designed to be a gift book for high school graduates. They are mostly cheesy or condescending. Derek has written to college freshman from a perspective that is wise yet hip, profound yet common sense, and complete yet not overwhelming. I appreciate the thoughtful outline, the fun quotes (from Dean Wormer and Uncle Ben Parker to Tom Brokaw and Albert Einstein to Henri Nouwen and John Stott) and especially the interviews with actual students who had both 'been there, done that,' and 'were there doing that.' The layout is easy to read, but Make College Count is definitely a challenge and not a children's book. The chapter I want every college student to read again and again is 'Taking Ownership of Your Faith.' What a world we would have with an emerging generation of leaders who carefully consider the implications of being a follower of Christ. Both of my college-aged children will get a copy as soon as they are printed."--Allen Jackson, professor of youth and collegiate ministry, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary

The Author

  1. Derek Melleby

    Derek Melleby

    Derek Melleby (DMin, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) is director of calling and career development at Lancaster Bible College. He is also an associate staff member with the Coalition for Christian Outreach. He lives in Mount Joy, Pennsylvania.

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