When a student reflects on his or her college experience, what do they hope to remember? Lifelong friends, riveting classroom discussions, and walking across that stage to get their diploma are all highlights of the undergraduate experience. But in today’s quickly evolving job market, there’s one thing students should be adding to their list of college memories before it’s too late: making a difference.
Volunteering increases your likelihood of being hired
According to a survey by TimeBank through Reed Executive (as cited by the World Volunteer Web), there’s an incredible statistic that 73% of top employers are more likely to hire a candidate with volunteer experience than someone who has none. On top of that, according to the same survey, 94% of employers believe that volunteering can add to career skills, and 94% of employees who volunteered learned skills that they could later apply in their job position, making them eligible for faster promotions and higher salaries. Students that enter the workforce with volunteer experience are not only boosting their resumes, but are effectively standing-out among other potential (and equally qualified) candidates when it’s finally time to fill these open positions.
Volunteering is the key to becoming better, faster, and stronger individuals
Besides the tangible benefit of entering the competitive workforce with an edge over fellow peers, reports show that students become stronger learners through volunteerism. Volunteering in the real world challenges students’ previous notions on issues and challenges them to apply real-life solutions to tackle problems they had only previously thought about in an abstract way. Not only do students get to take their newly gained knowledge and utilize it to make a difference, the act of volunteering allows them to retain that information in a much more practical manner. This higher-level of learning means better test scores, advanced levels of aptitude, and extended learning.
One thing that every college campus wants is an environment of happy, engaged students. Being involved with volunteerism alongside getting a degree can help make that happen. Students develop stronger relationships with faculty and their peers, shatter preconceived stereotypes of the world around them, and have a higher satisfaction throughout their college experience. This in turn benefits the campus by by improving student retention and building enhanced community relations.
Having the right tools to measure student engagement, assisting faculty and staff to track volunteer hours, and building a strong relationship with community members are all imperative factors when running a successful volunteer program on your campus.
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