The first conference was held in Miami in 1990, and for the first several years was known as "The Miami Conference". The conference gained popularity and in 1996 became known by its current name, the National Short Term Missions Conference (NSTMC). The conference has taken place on each coast and most recently in Atlanta. Beginning with the 2012 conference, the NSTMC will now be sponsored as an official training event of the Standards of Excellence in Short-Term Mission (SOE), since NSTMC so effectively fulfills the SOE's vision for STM best practice training and equipping. Thanks to support from Casas Adobes Church in Tucson, the winter conference will now take place in the desirable venue of the Desert Southwest.
The NSTMC is one of 3 parts of the Alliance for Excellence in Short Term Mission (AESTM). The other two divisions are the Fellowship of Short Term Mission Leaders (FSTML) and the Standards of Excellence (SOE). People that attend NSTMC include STM leaders from colleges and universities, all sizes of churches, and mission agencies. Authors, professors, and other experts in the field of STM have served as plenary speakers and workshop faculty.