Navigating for Christ

The University of Florida campus and the surrounding Gainesville area does not lack Christian ministries. There is a multitude of Christian organizations for students at UF and Santa Fe to get involved with, and one example of these many ministries is the UF Navigators.


The UF Navigators are an interdenominational Christian campus ministry that began at the University of Florida in 2006. They focus on developing and fostering relationships, not only with God but also with all of His people.

The tagline for the Navigators is “To Know Christ and Make Him Known”. This organization first seeks to reach students at the University of Florida and expose them to the Gospel. They consider the UF campus to be their mission field, where they can help encourage a community of believers.

Their main function is to show students how to effectively study the Word and invest in meaningful relationships. They also aim to reach people all across the globe and share the messages of Christ with those who do not know God.

The Navigators put an emphasis on small group Bible study, which allows students to connect with their peers and learn from the lives of others. Navigator Representative and the UF Women’s Director, Laura Karlin described Bible study with the

Navigator Representative and the UF Women’s Director, Laura Karlin described Bible study with the Navs to be a comfortable space for students to learn about the Word of God. “A large portion of time is dedicated to studying a passage of the Bible, or a certain topic covered in the scriptures,” Karlin explained. “[We] have an honest discussion about what that particular passage means and the implications it has on our lives.”

Students from all backgrounds are welcome to come experience the structure of this ministry.  The Navigators “are hoping to be a safe place for people to investigate spiritual things and ask questions, even if they don’t identify as Christians,” Karlin said. This ministry makes an effort to introduce nonbelievers to the Word of God and the meaning of the death of Jesus. “We hope students get the chance to learn more about who God is so that their trust in Him will grow,” Karlin said.

In addition to Bible study, the Navigators offer large group meetings every Thursday night, which involves a worship session along with a sermon. This is an opportunity for students to gather together for a time of fellowship and corporate prayer. The Navigators also focus on continual personal growth, and they constantly celebrate their deep relationship with the Lord. “Navs helped send me on a trajectory of knowing and enjoying God more deeply year by year, and I’ve never looked back!” Karlin said.

The UF Navigators at Panama City Beach, FL, on a ministry retreat in 2015

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