6 Best Ways to Volunteer in College or University

volunteering There’s no better time to volunteer than when you’re in college. You’ve formed lasting friendships, become part of great clubs or other college organizations, and are eager to help make the world a better place.

The engagement and optimism you have as a college or university student make you the perfect candidate to be a volunteer. You might not know where to start with where or how to volunteer in college. If you ask around, you’ll learn of multiple opportunities, ranging from volunteering for charity to tutoring a peer.

Why You Should Volunteer

There are so many reasons to volunteer. You will meet new people, hear impactful stories and, in general, feel better because you’re making a difference. Besides that, volunteering looks great on a resume because it provides you with new skills. However, don’t volunteer just for this reason. You should have a greater purpose than that! No matter what type of experience you choose, you’ll be making a lasting impact. Here are the six best ways to volunteer in college or university to give you an idea of where to start.

1. Start With Your School

Before sourcing out to other places, begin asking about volunteering at your university. Often, clubs and organizations will host volunteer events, and people around campus are invited to join.

You can also begin your own initiative. If you see a need at your school and want to change it or fix something, get permission from the administration and gather a team. This might include picking up trash, planting or weeding a garden, starting a food pantry or gathering textbooks for incoming first-year students.

2. Seek Opportunities In the Surrounding Community

College is more than just being confined to your dorm and academic buildings. It gives you a chance to be part of a new community, and there will be plenty of volunteer opportunities there.

You can work with the city or town council to look for volunteering events. Ask local business owners if they know anything about volunteer groups within the region. Clean up a road, help a business promote themselves or raise funds for a new playground.

3. Get Together With the Youth

Another great way to volunteer during college is by connecting with local youth. Big Brothers Big Sisters of America is one of the most popular ways to mentor kids.

Additionally, you could teach sports, music or art lessons to younger students, or find a tutoring program. After all, you’re going to college with a specified degree and probably have a wealth of knowledge and experience in a subject that an elementary, middle or high-schooler may need help with.

4. Rethink Your Spring Break

Rather than heading to the beach for spring break, find a volunteer abroad experience or assist with a team from your college. This is one of the most popular college volunteering opportunities. A group of fellow students and even professors at times spend the week on a service project.

Some of these programs require traveling to a foreign country. You get to experience a new culture and make a difference in others’ lives during this time.

5. Fundraising for Charity

As a student, you may not be thinking about how to fundraise at college since you have to pay for your education. However, holding a fundraising event could be a great way to volunteer and help a charity all at the same time.

Whether you want to raise funds for children who need education support or for a health organization, you can hold an on-campus event to get the whole university involved.

  1. Volunteer From the Comfort of Your Dorm

Now that most colleges and universities have gone virtual due to COVID-19, people had to think out of the box to continue volunteering while maintaining a safe distance from others. Luckily, technology has made it possible for college students to volunteer virtually.

One way to volunteer online is by participating in research projects. Additionally, if you’re experienced in another language, you can help translate important texts and information.
Give Your Time

One of the greatest gifts you can give is your time. Many people and organizations need people like you to offer their skills for the greater good. You’ll gain a wealth of experience, and you’ll feel as if you have a purpose, even amid a global pandemic.

About the Author

Ginger Abbot is a freelance writer and the Editor-in-Chief of Classrooms, an online learning magazine for students, graduates and educators.