Obviously, rapid turnover is one of the many “special” quirks that makes college ministry tougher. Even the most committed and loyal students will only stick around for 4-5 years, by virtue of actually achieving the graduation they’ve been aiming for all along.
But there’s a power of sorts in the turnover rate, too. We forget sometimes (or, I forget sometimes) how many students we get to reach. The constant influx means we’ve got new students to pour into each year.
It also means that our numbers say something different than the numbers of say, a church’s weekly attendance or an organization’s regular participants.
Because, of course, they don’t deal with a 4-year lifespan.
If you have a college ministry that holds steady in “membership” year after year… well, in a decade you’ve really reached 3 times that number, at least – and probably quite a bit more.
And even a year where numbers stay “flat” means you probably grew quite a bit since last year. Because, of course, plenty probably graduated in between.
Just some thoughts. Sadly, some of us need to “prove” our positions occasionally, and this is one more way to talk about the value of college ministry.