Doing Good . Undergrad Life
tags: campus involvment , college , college life , community service , Doing Good , Good , Giving , Help , opportunity , success , tips
Are you wondering why and how to volunteer in college? Perhaps you’ve heard a great deal about the benefits of volunteering, but aren’t sure that it is right for you. One of the best things about volunteering is that you can choose where to dedicate your time. Choosing something you’re passionate about can make all of the difference in your long-term goals.
Why Should I Volunteer in College?
While this is a personal decision, there are plenty of reasons to volunteer that should spur you into taking that step. Could any of these benefits push you toward a volunteer opportunity?
- You’ll have fun. You’ll meet new people and find yourself learning a great deal. Most importantly, most people find the experience enjoyable. It’s not like going to work or hitting the textbooks. It can be something you look forward to each day.
- It’s a resume builder. When the time comes to apply for a job (or a student scholarship, award, or any other prestigious opportunity), volunteer work can set you apart from most others. It shows you’ve dedicated your time and effort to something worthy. When you volunteer over the long term, that shows your commitment and dedication levels.
- You’ll learn key leadership skills. If you feel you aren’t confident, volunteering is perhaps the best way to change that. There are a lot of opportunities in which you’ll find yourself in charge of a table or managing a group of people. Even if you think you don’t have the skills for this, you’ll learn them in a very uplifting manner.
- Volunteer for college credit. Talk to your school about opportunities for this. In nearly all cases, it is possible to get college credit for your volunteer work, especially when it’s connected in some way to your educational curriculum and future degree. Your counselor is the best person to find opportunities that will gain approval from your school.
- You’re building a network. When you volunteer in a program or opportunity that’s close to your future career path, you’ll be building key connections. A network like this, with people in the industry who already know you and how hard you work, may help you find the perfect job later.
- Learn empathy. It may not initially seem like a benefit, but most people learn a great deal about the world when they volunteer. You’ll learn skills to help you deal with all of the complications that come down your path for years to come. Getting the unique perspective of those in need can be a powerful tool.
- It’s experience. Later, when it comes time to apply for a job, you’ll find many employers want experience. If you’ve done volunteer work, your experience is already built-in. That’s a step up from the competition.
- You may get a scholarship. Scholarships often go to those who demonstrate that volunteerism is a way of life. If you want to reduce how much you’re paying for your education, volunteer work can help you do that.
- Build team skills. In today’s workforce, it’s essential to have good skills when working with others, but they are not always easy to learn. When you volunteer, you’ll be working with a wide range of people from all walks of life. This can help give you the boost you need in being a team player.
- It feels good. At the end of the day, you’ll appreciate being able to say you did something worthwhile. You changed a life. You gave someone hope.
Where Should I Volunteer in College?
Opportunities to volunteering can be found in any industry and area. Talk to your school counselor. Discuss opportunities within the groups you are a part of at school. Religious organizations, government agencies and nonprofits always need help. Ask yourself how you can find people in need of help and support within the industry you’re studying in, too. It’s really up to you to find the right fit for your needs.
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