University Admissions Blog
ANNOUNCEMENTS & ADVICE
Why you should be volunteering if you want to study in the United States (and what you can do about it)
I have written before about the importance of exracurriculars in your US university applications. And this latest data drives home my point: extracurricular activities, and community service in particular, can make or break your application.
What am I talking about? A recent survey conducted for x2vol, a community service tracking platform, reveals just how important community service work is for US universities. Of the 264 universities that took part in the survey, 58% reported that, “A student’s community service experience has a positive impact on his or her acceptance to our higher education institution.”
What’s more, 53% reported that community service served as the tie breaker when deciding between two equal applicants (same grades, standardized test scores, and high school rigor).
Why? Despite the popularly held belief that community service is valued because it indicates community involvement, survey participants stated that community service actually indicates, “...that the student is likely to be active in student social life outside the classroom” and “...that the student is likely to contribute to the school’s mission.”
So what does this mean for you, eager applicant?
It’s time to get involved and give back to your community!
And, what’s more, summer is coming up. Now is the perfect time to start developing your volunteer experience!!
Please contact me if you need help lining up work or deciding what you want to do. I know it can more difficult for some to find volunteer work that suits them - so you might need to be a little bit more creative! As a university admissions consultant and intermediary, I have a lot of experience helping students with this exact thing. Contact me on WeChat: kvanderweert.
Who do you want to help?
Look for organizations or projects that relate to your passions. What will you enjoy doing? Remember the admissions officers are looking for a T-shaped students, and following your passions will add depth to your application.
What skills do you want to gain?
Not only do you give back through community service, but you gain from it as well. Community service can help you develop a wide range of skills - such as communication, teaching, technology, leadership, and so much more. What skills would you like to learn for your future career, coursework, or simply for personal pleasure? Consider what you want to gain from your volunteer experience and find a project that will help you develop desirable skills.
How much time do you have to offer?
A major consideration is time. How many hours per week or month can you offer an organization? Knowing this will help you narrow down your options, and the volunteer coordinators will appreciate knowing how much time they can expect from you.
Volunteer ideas by interest
Helping the Environment
Helping the Needy