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College Age Mission Trips

Looking for college age mission trips? Imagine a summer that combines missions, discipleship, and adventure in a relational environment. As a college student, you have the unique opportunity to serve as a Staff Discipler mentoring 2-4 teens and walk alongside them as their worldview explodes!

Jesus focused on James, John, and Peter. And Paul took Timothy under his wing for special training. On Royal Servants, you’ll learn how to be a disciple who produces disciples as you experience the tremendous growth that happens in your life when you pour into someone else’s! In today’s “me” focused environment, this is outside the box and it may be a bit scary and intimidating.

But don’t worry; we’ll get you ready for the role! As a Staff Discipler you will come to Training Camp a week ahead of the students to begin in-depth training. Topics ranging from blossoming (growing) your students, leading a small group discussion, and discipline, will help prepare you for the role. There will also be a focus on your own spiritual preparation as you get ready to take on the role of a shepherd. And just as your role is to walk alongside your students during the trip, your trip leadership will walk alongside you. Your trip leaders are there to help with answers, ideas, encouragement, and support.

As a Staff Discipler you will also be fully engaged in all the ministry activities along with the rest of the team. Depending on the trip you choose, you will be ministering to orphans, loving on street kids, performing street drama or dance, surfing with Irish teens, kicking around a soccer ball, or eating noodles with Chinese students.



A Staff Discipler is typically older than a student. Students on Royal Servants will be between the ages of 13-18. Staff Disciplers must be 19 years old and have graduated from High School (exceptions are made only at the recommendation of a previous trip leader and/or approval by the director of Royal Servants). A Staff Discipler’s role is really about having a servant’s heart and a willing attitude. Their responsibility is two-fold: first, for each Staff Discipler to pour into their small group of students through life on life discipleship, and second, to minister to the people in the specific country they will travel to.


As a Staff Discipler you will arrive one week prior to the students for training specific to your role. It's both intense and laid-back at the same time. The training covers topics such as:

  • How to lead a small group discussion and prayer time
  • How to effectively discipline and confront your students
  • How to grow and encourage your students and teach them how to push themselves
  • How to delegate responsibilities to your students
  • How to develop your leadership skills
  • How to navigate challenging situations with your student: i.e. homesickness, feelings of inadequacy and culture shock

There's a lot of training that happens, but we also use the time to bond as staff teams. A Staff Discipler is one of the most important, stretching, influential, and simply amazing roles on a Royal Servants mission trip. As a Discipler, however you are not alone, your Trip Leaders will come alongside you during the training week, and throughout the trip, to make sure you are prepared practically, emotionally, and spiritually for the role.


No, it’s not necessary. We’ll give you all the training and support you’ll need to be an effective Staff Discipler. If you have led a small group before, you might find it helpful, but being a Staff Discipler is going to be different than most small group roles you may have experienced.


In some elements there are similarities, but there are significant differences as well. The ultimate goal of developing relationships with students and pointing them toward Christ is the same. However, as a camp counselor you generally will only have a week with your students; during a Royal Servants summer, it’s a different story.

The discipleship model we work from is life-on-life discipleship. That means that as a Staff Discipler you will be living, interacting, and ministering alongside the students during the entire mission trip. You'll be given anywhere from 2-4 students for the 5-7 weeks of the trip. That’s a lot of time to invest into an individual’s life. You will spend time nearly every day talking through the day’s Bible reading, praying with your group, and checking in to see how each of your students is doing both emotionally and physically. You will also be responsible for practical life discipleship, walking with your students as you help them manage social situations, deal with relationships in a healthy way, helping them order at restaurants with a language barrier, or even helping them navigate busy streets safely!

Bottom line, as a Staff Discipler you’ll be partnering together with the Lord to be your students’ shepherd, encourager, mentor, model, listener, and accountability partner.


  • Leading your discipleship group in discussing each day’s Bible reading
  • Setting the environment for and leading your group in prayer
  • Working alongside and leading your “d-group” in assigned meal preparation (don’t worry we’ll train you)
  • Assisting your students with their memorization
  • Coming alongside your students as they learn to share the Gospel cross-culturally
  • Depending on the trip, you’ll be sleeping in a tent or room with your d-group
  • Looking for occasions to encourage and affirm the students in your group

Mission Trips, china, airport

Yes, every trip needs Staff Disciplers. However, Royal Servants may ask you to consider going on another trip if another trip is lacking Disciplers and one you chose is fully staffed.


That depends on the number of people on any given mission trip. Royal Servants’ goal is to have one staff for every two to four students. Generally, there are anywhere between 6-12 Staff Disciplers on each trip. They become a pretty tight-knit group!


We actually have an iPhone and Android app called “The Student Sorter” where we input everyone who has applied for the trip and it automatically assigns students to your group. Just kidding! Once you arrive at staff training with the other Disciplers, your Trip Leaders spend time getting to know you and understanding your unique gifting. You will spend time reviewing student applications as a staff team and getting to know them before they arrive. At the end of staff training your Trip Leaders will meet and prayerfully consider which students should be placed in your group.

Nepal, travel, richoet

Yes, discipleship groups are always gender specific, guys with guy leaders and girls with girl leaders. Due to the nature of our trips you’ll be spending a lot of time together in your “d-groups” cooking, eating, sleeping, shopping and ministering alongside one another.

Switzerland, Western europe, lakes, boats

This is entirely up to you. Once all the students have either been picked up at the airport or caught a flight home, your responsibilities end. Due to distance and busy schedules it’s not always possible to keep up with your students after everyone gets home. But since you have built significant relationships with your students over the summer, we would encourage you to keep those up through texts, Facebook and email if possible or desired.

College Credit, friends, discipleship

Potentially, but it really depends on your major and internship requirements. Many Staff Disciplers have received internship credit for their summer with Royal Servants with majors such as:

  • Youth Ministry
  • Communications
  • Photography
  • Leadership
  • Bible

If you would like to try and receive credit for your mission trip, please send your internship requirements to Margaret Fischer at


You! Being a Staff Discipler is an amazing role that could impact your life in incredible ways. You’ll be in an environment set up to make you succeed and you’ll have leadership behind you to support and encourage you every step of the way. And you’ll do all this in an amazing country where you get to see God work in you and your students in new and fresh ways. If you have a passion for pouring into those younger than you, if you get excited at the thought of helping students navigate real-life issues, and if helping raise up a generation of youth committed to Christ, then being a Staff Discipler is right for you.


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Evan (RS Student)

If anyone is thinking of Royal Servants you should do it for sure. So many people are famished for the...
If anyone is thinking of Royal Servants you should do it for sure. So many people are famished for the truth, peace, and love of Christ. Not only can you see their life change but yours will as well. God will and can use you if you allow Him. So thank you Royal Servants and thank you Lord! – Evan

Abby (Student)

I had an amazing time on the Poland team in 2013! God showed me how to trust Him in all...
I had an amazing time on the Poland team in 2013! God showed me how to trust Him in all circumstances and give up control of my life. I met some amazing people and I will never forget it. It was an awesome experience! – Abby

Matthew (Student)

Royal Servants has giving me the opportunity to serve others, share my faith, grow deeper in love, experience a new...
Royal Servants has giving me the opportunity to serve others, share my faith, grow deeper in love, experience a new culture, find a new understanding of scripture, have a family of teens that are on fire for God and fall in love with my Father who loves me. I feel prepared to take what I have learned from this summer of service and begin a lifetime of ministry. – Matthew

Devin (Student)

I now have a much greater confidence in talking to strangers about Christ. – Devin
I now have a much greater confidence in talking to strangers about Christ. – Devin

Phoebe (Student)

During this summer, I have fallen more deeply in love with God and have begun the life-long journey of getting...
During this summer, I have fallen more deeply in love with God and have begun the life-long journey of getting to know him more. I am so thankful for the opportunity to be on a Royal Servant team this summer, and I am so excited to see how God uses this experience in the years to come. – Phoebe