Several years ago a friend left College Ministry. When asked why he left he said," I still loved College Ministry, I just hated college students". That happens to a few, but not most. I am addressing those that leave still loving both the Ministry and students and feel it was their calling.
3. FINANCES - both personal and ministry finances drive College Ministers away. As one College Minister's wife told me, "I would not want my family to know that our kids are on welfare insurance". Often, College Ministers can go to a church staff and instantly get a significant raise and get insurance provided. Lack of finances cause personal and marital stress. On the Ministry side, trying to do much with little is a huge killer. One friend went to a large deep south campus because they indicated the ministry was small and shouldn't be. After a year, the ministry was growing and those providing the finances cut the budget by one third. The ministry continued to grow and they cut the budget again by one third. My friend left College Ministry.
2. FAILURE - More correctly said, a FEELING of failure. College Ministry is hard and getting harder due to changing church dynamics, cuts in funding and increasing hostility by University administrations. Often, with the resources they have, etc the College Minister is doing a super job....but they see the needs and opportunities and
don't feel what they are doing is adequate. Often, this is false guilt or related to inadequate emotional support...which leads to what I believe is the #1 reason people leave College Ministry...
1. FEELING ALONE - when you feel you are the only one who cares, it is hard to keep on! Having an emotional support base is huge and serving without one is devastating. I would submit that my friend who left when the ministry was growing after that was what they asked and the budget was being cut, felt she was the only one who cared! All of us need someone who cares and sees what we are doing as valuable. If it is not built into where you serve, you must work at building an emotional support base!