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How to do meaningful community service

kuma16kuma16 17 replies5 threads Junior Member
How do you do community service that's meaningful and positive for your application? One of my core values is helping others, but unfortunately, I haven't done much community service, and I'm a rising junior 🙁. I'm worried this is not only hurting my application but hurting me in a sense, too, because I love doing it, I just haven't been able to take the time to do it.

Especially with COVID-19, I'm not sure what I can do. I've considered starting my own initiatives, but I feel like those related to COVID-19 (writing cards for frontline workers, peer mentorship programs, etc.) have already been done by other people, so I would just be copying others. On the other hand, I don't think anyone would be interested in the ones I've thought of (ex. free tutoring over the summer, free skating lessons, etc.).

How would you advise I go about finding (or making) opportunities? Do I need to create something myself? Making an impact on your community is a significant factor in T20 admissions, and I'm worried I'm falling short in that sense. With people aiming for T20s starting nonprofits and making nationally-recognized efforts, I'm afraid mine will pale in comparison.
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Replies to: How to do meaningful community service

  • thealternativethealternative 84 replies1 threads Junior Member
    If you are talking about free skating lessons as in figure skating, rinks are probably closed or on reduced capacity for the next while.

    Meaningful and positive means you are searching for ways to be authentic. That is a great impulse. Volunteering is a life-long pursuit that should be because you want to make a difference in the world, not check off a box for college, and forget about being the change you wish to see.

    In terms of making time for it, what is your particular impediment? Too heavy a schoolwork schedule? No ability to commute to a site to volunteer? Duties at home? Are you taking any courses this summer or do you have a chunk of time now to work with?

    Leadership can mean starting something, but it can also mean devoting a significant number of hours to an established cause. Do you have that time now?

    You could find an organization near you that can use help for the summer. You could devote several weeks to it and have made a solid contribution. Working in the summer is great because school work isn't on your mind as well.

    Conduct an online search of local organizations that are in fields that interest you. Are you into animals, or helping the elderly - who are increasingly isolated these days? Are businesses opening up with proper social distancing, or needing help with remote work?

    You might need to make many inquiries to find something. Don't be discouraged. A lot of students from college are back right now and are also looking for ways to be useful.

    As you do this, you can also think of something in the community that is needed that is not currently happening. Finding out how to fill a niche that is under-served is a strong way to help others around you thrive.

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