Senior Hannah Jackson is a small group leader for freshman and sophomore nursing students in the NCF chapter at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. “College is where I made my faith my own and learned what it means to follow the Lord,” she said. Now Hannah is equipping others to carry on the growing NCF ministry after she graduates from the nursing program.
My mother is a nurse and my grandmother (photo) was a nurse, so I heard a lot about nursing as a child. I love people and helping others, so I knew without a doubt that I wanted to study nursing in college. This desire was something that the Lord gave me. He has confirmed this path for my life over and over again throughout nursing school.
Spiritual Growth in College
I grew up in a Christian family, but college is where I made my faith my own. I learned what it truly means to follow the Lord. I had to decide for myself whether to get up and go to church on Sundays, or whether to seek out a Christian community on campus. During my freshman year, I realized that having a relationship with God was no longer something I did because I was supposed to, but because I desired it. That desire to know God has grown over my years in college. There were many hard times in school but the Lord continued to pursue me and pull me closer to him. He stretches me daily.
Excited about Campus Ministry
College campuses can be very dark places. Students are often just looking for a place to belong and for someone to care about them. Campus ministry is a way to reach out to those students and give them a sense of belonging. I love having the chance to share God’s love with my own peers -- other nursing students -- that I’m surrounded by daily.
Joys and Challenges of Leadership
Being in campus ministry is definitely full of joys and challenges. It has been amazing to witness how the Lord has grown NCF at our school this year. We went from one small group of six people to two small groups with 10 or 12 attending regularly in each of them. This is a huge joy! This year I am leading a freshman and sophomore small group for nursing students. I love connecting with students that I normally wouldn’t know. I’ve built relationships with them outside of our small group and I have seen the Lord clearly working in their lives in awesome ways!
One of the challenges of leading a small group is that I truly want to get to know each of the students in a deeper way, but that’s not realistic. There is only one of me and we all have crazy schedules. Another challenge is remembering that God has his own perfect timing in people’s lives. I like to see results, and when I don’t, it is easy to become frustrated. The Lord has been teaching me a lot about trusting in him and in his timing.
I am so grateful for NCF ministry on my campus and what I have learned about following Jesus as I graduate and begin my nursing practice.
Hannah Jackson enjoys children and hopes to be a pediatric nurse one day. She loves running, music, Grey’s Anatomy, and anything chocolate. The picture of Hannah’s grandmother (above) was taken in 1952 after her capping ceremony and graduation from North Carolina Baptist Hospital. She was a role model and source of inspiration for Hannah.