“I had nursing students on my mind,” remembers Myriah Martin, BSN, RN, about her recent time volunteering with an InterVarsity (IVCF) campus group since her senior year in nursing school at Davenport University in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
After graduating and starting professional nursing practice in a progressive care unit, Myriah recalls asking the IVCF student leaders to dream with her about reaching the corners of their campus. “What are our corners?” she queried. “What would ministry in those places look like?”
With nurses on her mind, but without the time to launch a new group on her own, Myriah realized God already had a strategy. “A student I had been in ministry with came to me, along with another nursing student, and asked if they could start a nursing group.”
“I hadn’t seen how reaching that corner would happen—and then these students were coming to me. So I was definitely ready to say, ‘Yes!’” Myriah and the two student volunteers launched the group using Start NCF: A Guide for Nursing Students from the NCF website. “I am so thankful for the resources provided by NCF that made planting a new ministry in that season possible.”
Though unsure how the group would work, they started with six students who had previously been involved with IVCF. “It was a slow process with that small group of casting a vision of what NCF ministry on our campus could look like and what God might want to do in the lives of nursing students,” Myriah admits.
“We hit a speedbump in the first few weeks. We lost one student leader, then in the second semester, the other leader changed majors and left the group. But not before God provided someone else. She was in her first year of the nursing program, one of the harder years.”
“It was encouraging that she was even coming to the small group, and then was willing to say yes to leading,” Myriah said, again recognizing God at work.
That first year the group relied on resources from NCF to direct the next steps in their group’s development, including Bible study materials.
This year, Myriah started graduate studies and had to transition out of the nursing student group. “The fact that they’re still meeting really shows what God is doing,” Myriah asserts. “Being on a secular campus and having a nursing community where you can learn about Jesus and his character and how to put that together with nursing—that’s been powerful in the students’ lives.”
“There’s so much more that I can see God could do,” she added, feeling disappointed that she had to leave her role so early. “It feels so unfinished.”
Yet Myriah clearly observes that, despite all the obstacles, the student nurses who’ve stepped into leadership “love Jesus and have a heart for their campus and for other nursing students. They’re working together with their group to experience Jesus in nursing.”
As she transitioned out of the group, one student gave her a note that showed how God had used Myriah—speedbumps, setbacks, and all. The student wrote, “Thank you for helping me understand how my relationship with God can go hand-in-hand with nursing school and the profession itself.”
A few months later, Myriah praised God again when she heard that more students had joined the group, and one has begun a personal relationship with Jesus.
Nurses who are interested in volunteering with a student group or students who want to start or join an NCF group can contact NCF Student Ministries Director Jen Wotjysiak and check out student ministry on the NCF website.