If you are a college or university student, you might be looking for opportunities to volunteer in your community. While reading to local elementary school children, adopting a grandparent or participating in Habitat for Humanity can be an enjoyable experience, some college students are looking for ways to give back to their school by helping their fellow students. There are several ways you can do this, starting with these four suggestions.
While some schools will offer you the opportunity to make money tutoring, providing your services for free can be a rewarding experience, especially if you get to work with students who might otherwise be unable to afford tutoring services. If your school has a volunteer tutoring program, find out how you can join. If there is not a volunteer tutoring program, you may want to find out what you would need to do to start one.
Another alternative is to offer free tutoring services on your own. You can start out with something as simple as tutoring your roommate who is struggling in a class that you aced or letting people know that you are willing to offer free tutoring services. You could even contact professors who teach the courses where you plan to provide tutoring services. They can let their students know that you are willing to offer free tutoring.
Some schools are offering mentoring opportunities for upperclassmen. Often, you will mentor first-year students who are going into your program or a similar program. You may need to be available to answer questions and help students succeed. If your school has New-Student Orientation or another activity where first-year students come to campus a few days before school starts, you may need to act as a tour guide for a group of students. Once you have graduated and established yourself in your field, you may also want to serve as a mentor for students who are trying to succeed in your chosen profession.
Help Those with Disabilities
Students with disabilities should have appropriate accommodations, but sometimes those may not be enough. Look for ways you can help your fellow students with disabilities better succeed. If you know sign language, you could volunteer to act as an interpreter, even if it’s just when the person’s regular interpreter is sick or otherwise unable to help. You may also be able to act as an interpreter when the student needs help in the community.
Your school may also have other opportunities to help students who have disabilities. That may include taking notes for a student who has a physical disability that makes writing hard or impossible. It may consist of reading and recording textbooks for blind students who may not have the Braille versions. Your school may have other opportunities to help students with disabilities, or you may be able to come up with ideas on your own.
Okay, this may not be something you are doing for other students as much as something you are doing for people who are considering coming to your college or university. It is an excellent way to show your enthusiasm for your school and to let others who are considering entering know why it could be a good choice for them. Some of those who take your tours may have you to thank for helping them to make the right higher education choice. While they may not be your college peers right now, some of them may join you while you are still a student.
Not all of these opportunities are available at all schools. Check with your college or university to learn about these service opportunities as well as other ways you can help your fellow students. In some cases, you may be able to offer these services to students even if you are not currently a student yourself.