There are a lot of ways to change the world, and many of them don’t involve sitting at a desk. In a tough economy, community service in the U.S. is often a great alternative to beginning a stressful job search right after graduation. There are a wide variety of organizations and programs that provide an unforgettable experience and allow you to learn, grow, and change the world. Take a look at these three, and see which one might be right for you!
Teach For America
Teach For America is a program for recent college graduates of all academic majors and career interests. It is a two year teaching placement in urban and rural public schools. The mission behind Teach for America is to eliminate educational inequality through the efforts of exceptional and motivated young people (like you!). By placing recent college graduates in the country’s lowest-income communities, Teach For America works to spread knowledge and effect change through leadership and academic excellence. Teach For America candidates have a firm belief in the unlimited potential of education and a desire to change the world. Sound familiar? Apply!
AmeriCorps is a program whose mission is to improve lives, strengthen communities, and foster civic engagement through service and volunteering. AmeriCorps offers 75,000 opportunities for people of all ages and backgrounds to serve the needs of diverse communities including tutoring, building affordable housing, and helping communities respond to disasters. As an AmeriCorps member, you will gain new skills and experiences, and find the tremendous satisfaction that comes from helping others. In addition, full-time members who complete their service earn an Education Award of $4,725, a nice chunk of change, to pay for college, graduate school, or to pay back student loans. AmeriCorps is made up of three main programs: AmeriCorps State and National, AmeriCorps VISTA, and AmeriCorps NCCC (National Civilian Community Corps).
City Year, like AmeriCorps, is based on the notion of giving back to the community. At locations across the United States, City Year youth known as “corps members” serve full time for 10 months. They spend this time working as tutors, mentors and role models. Through School-Based Service, Youth Leadership, and Community Transformation, corps members transform situations for the better. Since 1988, City Year has engaged more than 1 million citizens in service. Wow!
– Caitlin Jackson