Student missionaries(SM) serve at missions location outside of the North American Division. Task force workers are also student missionaries, but they have chosen positions within North America, serving in academies, camps, or in other capacities. Task force workers have an awesome responsibility and the opportunity to use their Christian characters to touch the lives of others.
Most SMs experience some form of "reverse culture shock" when they return to the USA. We offer many resources to help you when you return from your time of service.
Don't worry. Many students go into a field of service they have no or little training in. God only needs your williness to serve and He will do the rest.
Usually not. After your sophomore year seems to be the best time for most students to serve. Most graduates want to get on with their lives once graduation comes and then they miss the opportunity. We also cannot defer loans once they graduate with the B.S./B.A. degree. Students with an A.S. degree can still have their loans deferred. Most nursing students prefer to go after graduating with their ASN and before returning to complete their BSN.
All student missionaries are required to have a passport if they are leaving the United States. Not all locations a require a visa it is important that you check your location to find out if you need a vissa. Some locations require a visa before arriving in the country and some require you to buy a visa upon arrival.
We wish we could guarantee that all of our SMs would be 100 percent safe. In this world, that is impossible. We do our best to monitor each situation, but there are no guarantees– either here at home or overseas. If you do feel like you are in danger in your place of service please follow the directions at this link to the SDA General Conference (www.hesaidgo.net/#/medical-emergency). It is their top priority to evacuate as safely and as soon a possible in the case of a real emergency.
The Student Missions office sends all student missionaries packages regularly. If you know someone that wants to send something to you, they can send it with our packages if it will fit. Otherwise it is important to check UPS specificaitons before they send you a package. Some locations have strict specifications on what size of packages can be delievered to rural areas. It is also important to make sure to check what the specifications are for the dilvery of packages. Some locations require the recipient to pay a fee to pick up the package.
Listed below are several websites that post mission opportunities. Due to liability issues and concern for your well-being, your mission location must meet our specific guidelines. If not listed below, please contact us to verify that it will qualify.
Returning from your time abroad can be very difficult for Student Missionaries. We try to alliviate some of that difficulty by offering several different forms of service.
It is important to make sure that you check in to your flight online 24 hours before your depature time and arrive at the airport at least 2 hours before your flight departs. This will signifcantly make the check in process smoother and less stressful for you.
Once you have raised the needed amount of money for your time abroad the student missions office will purchase your ticket to and from your location.
Some locations do allow time for student missionaries to visit home during their time of service. We do not recommend this because it can often be difficult for the student missionary to transition back into their position of service after visiting home.
This depends on the location you are serving and your location director. It is important for you to get permission from your location director before your parents make plans to visit you. The director might have concerns about logding, your work duties, ect...
• You must be a baptized member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
• We recommend you have at least two years of college and minimum GPA of 2.0.
• You must be a mature adult, able to handle responsibility and be adaptable, flexible, and open-minded.
• You must be financially responsible. Your student account must be current at the time of your departure.
• You must pass screening with the Student Missions committee.
Yes, you have the option to choose from available SM positions.
• Serving in an orphanage
• Church planting
• Women’s or men’s dean
• Construction worker
• Youth chaplain or youth pastor
• Medical missions
• Lay evangelism
• And many more
Yes, there are opportunities right here at home. They are referred to as “task force” (TF) workers. The paperwork and expenses may vary from international student missionaries. Task force opportunities include:
• Women’s or men’s dean in an academy setting
• Academy assistant chaplain
• Youth pastor
• Go to www.southern.edu/mvc/studentmissions and follow the instructions.
• Fill out all of the forms in Phase 1
• Go through the screening process.
• Pay $100 processing fee.
• Fill out any additional paperwork for the calling organization and/or complete the online application.
• Request or renew a passport. Do this as soon as you know you are interested in being an SM;
sometimes it takes a long time to process.
• Fill out paperwork for a work visa if needed for your mission location.
• Take required immunizations.
• Bring us a copy of your transcript.
• A $100 processing fee for all SMs and TFs to be paid with your application.
• You will also need to raise an additional $3,000 for the SM program (less for Task Force). Some locations cost more, depending on the requirements for that particular location. We have an approved letter for you to send to members of your church, family, and friends. Donations are tax deductable and non-refundable.
• We will keep track of your donations and you willl see them on your account so you can send thank-you notes to your donors.
• The money donated is for the “program” and not specifically for your expenses. If you exceed your goal, the extra money will help other student missionaries and fund other expenses of the Student Missions program.
• If you opt to delay your year of service, the money you raised will still be available to you later.
All are required to attend the orientation class (NOND 099) the last nine weeks of the school year. There is
no cost for this class, and there is no credit given.
The class consists of:
• Studying the book “Passport to Missions”
• Lectures that will be pertinent to your mission preparation
• A required research paper about your mission location
• An exam
• Required attendance at the SM exit retreat
• Attendance at the dedication service
• If you choose to go at a time when the orientation class is not being offered, we have an e-class option.
• Some of the mission organizations require additional training that they will provide.
While you are gone for your year of mission service, if you are still pursuing your undergraduate degree, you must be enrolled in Christian Service I&II (NOND 227, 228 for 6 hours of elective credit per semester while you are out, and you will be required to pay 10 percent of the regular tuition). Your grade for this class will be determined by your grade in the orientation class(NOND 099) and your work while in the field. This enrollment will keep you enrolled at Southern and it will defer your loans. If you have already graduated, you will need to check with your loan companies to see if they are willing to defer your loans. It is important to note that except for school loans, your bill at Southern must be settled before you will be permitted to go as a Student Missionary or Task Force.
Accident and sickness insurance (not covering pre-existing conditions or routine preventative health care) is provided while you are gone, through the General Conference Insurance Program. This is not for routine visits, it is mostly for emergencies.
Upon return to Southern to complete your undergraduate degree, you will receive a $1,500 SM/TF scholarship.
You must meet the following requirements to qualify:
• Complete the NOND-099 Student Missions Orientation Class
• Attend the Exit and Re-entry Retreats in their entirety
• Attend and participate in the SM Dedication Vespers Program
• Complete at least 6-12 months of service
• Complete required reports while serving
• Attend college prior to serving as SM/TF
*If you are a transfer student and served thru a sister University, please come and see us in the SM office
Go to the Phase One section of this website and follow the instructions. www.southern.edu/mvc/studentmissions
Come see Julie Norton in the Student Missions office. She would love to talk with you and get you started on the paperwork!
Be prepared to have one of the best, most exciting, adventuresome years of your life, understanding that it may also be one of the hardest years of your life, stretching you and growing you in ways you never imagined. The benefits to you and to the people you serve are immeasurable.