Plan for College

Learn how to prepare for the education and training that will get you your dream job.

Get Involved In Your Community

Volunteering can teach you skills and impress colleges

High school and middle school aren't just about academics. In many ways, they're also about exploring what you value in life. Learn more about yourself and you're better prepared to make the most of college. In that vein, consider community volunteer work. Here's how such opportunities help you and others.

Why volunteer?

  • Your help can make a difference. Depending on what you do, your volunteer work can be a strong positive force for others. To see how your volunteering benefits and might even help change lives can be gratifying.
  • You gain valuable experience in the process. Many times, students who volunteer expand their abilities to empathize and understand others. But they can also grow in more practical ways. Volunteering could be in a field in which you want to get a job. Perhaps you want to work in city planning, in which case, volunteer work at a library or school can give you insight about these institutions.
  • Volunteering shows colleges your commitment. Schools are interested in well-rounded individuals who want to strengthen and give back to society. Many scholarships are also awarded based partly on your extra-curricular and volunteer activities.

How can you volunteer?
Try aligning your volunteering with an interest. Do you like taking pictures? Try the photojournalism club, or work on your school's newspaper or yearbook staff. Are you interested in sports but not very athletic? Think about being a team manager. You can learn about other volunteer opportunities by visiting the Youth Service America website. You could also look for activities in and out of school. Organizations constantly in need of volunteers include:

  • Churches
  • Synagogues
  • Area food banks
  • Children's shelters
  • Hospitals
  • Nursing and retirement homes
  • Museums
  • Libraries

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