If you are a high schooler like myself, especially a high school senior, then you are familiar with the stress and pressure of filling out your college applications. Applying to college can be daunting, and many students find themselves worrying about their GPAs and job experience, wondering if what they have accomplished over the past four years is enough to impress the colleges they seek to enroll in. Writing an application is a way of building a reputation or image of yourself for a college, and while many students are worried about quantifiable aspects of their transcripts, like grades, there is another part of the application that students overlook: service. Community service is a critical activity to add to your college application for a variety of reasons.
1. Volunteering for community service creates a drive to action and a propensity for leadership. Students who show an extensive interest in service opportunities prove to colleges that they are capable of being a leader within their community. They show that they are able to be hardworking team players who can make an impact in a real-world situation.
2. Volunteering for community service helps a student learn to work outside of their school environment. Sometimes, students are more comfortable searching for opportunities within the confines of their school. However, volunteering outside of school shows colleges that students aren’t afraid of tackling unfamiliar tasks and managing new environments.
3. Volunteering for community service builds a selfless passion for others. This is the most obvious benefit of volunteering. Colleges can see when a student has applied themselves to a volunteer opportunity because they are really passionate about the cause, and they will appreciate that a student is showing initiative and working to pursue these interests.
In summary, volunteering works to create a better you. Community service is a great character builder, which is why so many colleges urge their applicants to find a volunteer opportunity that they are really passionate about. For high schoolers looking for ways to serve their community, there are many nonprofits that Triangle Cares partners with that provide service opportunities for students. Check out our website for more information about these organizations and how you can get involved. Remember: sometimes quantity is not the most important thing to consider with your college application. It’s the quality of your experiences that is truly valuable.
About Habitat for Humanity of Wake County
Habitat Wake has been offering affordable homeownership opportunities to Wake County families since 1985. In 2018, Habitat Wake merged with Habitat for Humanity of Johnston County and now serves both counties. In Habitat Wake’s thirty years of service, they have built more than 850 safe, affordable, energy-efficient homes.
One in four families in our community is cost-burdened, meaning they pay too much of their income toward housing at the expense of other necessities like groceries, healthcare and education. To help meet this need, Habitat Wake offers homeownership opportunities for families making less than 80% AMI, and preserves existing affordable homes. Habitat Wake also advocates for policy change that will increase access to housing for everyone
Through support of our community, provided by corporations, faith groups, foundations individual donors and proceeds from Habitat for Humanity Restores, Habitat Wake is able to build homes, communities and hope.
Our faith community is pivotal to our success! Hundreds of congregations partner with us each year to raise funds, send volunteers, pray for our community and advocate for affordable housing. Our first mission principle is to demonstrate the love of Jesus Christ. We undertake our work to demonstrate the love and teachings of Jesus, acting in all ways in accord with the belief that God’s love and grace abound for all, and that we must be “hands and feet” of that love and grace in our world. We believe that, through faith, the miniscule can be multiplied to accomplish the magnificent, and that, in faith, respectful relationships can grow among all people.
Habitat Wake has many ways to get involved! You can volunteer at our Construction sites, at any of 10 Habitat for Humanity ReStores in the Triangle, or in the office as a skills-based volunteer.
On our Habitat construction sites we work alongside future homebuyers to build new homes. We do everything from laying the foundation to painting the walls. No experience is necessary: we have permanent staff and AmeriCorps members to help guide you. Construction sites are open to volunteers Thursday through Saturday. Volunteers must be at least 16 years old and fully vaccinated.
Learn more about volunteering with our construction team: https://www.habitatwake.org/volunteer-build-habitat-wake.
The Habitat for Humanity ReStores offer volunteer opportunities too! Volunteers work side-by-side with staff with responsibilities including helping customers find what they need, taking donations and thanking donors, making sure the lights and houseware departments are organized and many more. Volunteers must attend an orientation before volunteering. We have orientation twice a week and we do not accept walk-ins.
Learn more about volunteering at the ReStores: https://www.trianglerestores.org/volunteer
Jordan Hannan and Jordan Lappin