Why West students should be volunteering


Raven Gibson, Staff Reporter

Students who gain experiences which can build a resume are beneficial to them in the future. When a person goes to fill out an application for a job or college, there will be a place to write what volunteer work they have done in the past.

Volunteering is as important as having a good GPA or having extra curricular activities in the eyes of employers and colleges.

Having volunteer work on a resume means extra experience. Yes, prior jobs are experience, but volunteering looks better to colleges that want someone with good character who is willing to work hard even if that means they don’t get a reward.

Focusing on volunteering can be difficult if a student participates in extracurricular activities or has a job, but many places will allow students to do a few hours of work for one day a month, Home Sweet Home Ministries for instance.

Although most high school students want a job so they can get paid, volunteer work provides new experiences, builds good character, and creates meaningful material for a resume.

For instance, if a student has a decent GPA, a part time job, and they are involved in extracurricular activities but they have no additional volunteer work or community service, they could be looked over when applying to college.

Ivy League schools say that a student who is involved with multiple volunteer organizations is not necessarily an advantage. It looks better to be highly involved in volunteering for one organization than having a lot of small volunteer work. While both are good to have, being devoted towards one or two makes a person look more determined and involved.

Libby Workman (12) said, “Community involvement is really important in high school, whether through a church, club or just you yourself. It is really important because colleges look at that a lot.”

Not only does this help the volunteer in the long run, but it benefits the community.  Many organizations are still running because of the volunteers, like the Humane Society and Red Cross.

For more competitive schools where thousands of applicants have very similar GPA and extracurricular involvement, the school will probably accept the person who has become more involved in his or her community.

It can also be hard for a students to know where to start to look for volunteer work in town. Below are some links to local organizations in need of volunteers.

-Normal/Bloomington Public Library: no age limit http://www.normalpl.org/involved/volunteer/  http://www.bloomingtonlibrary.org/about_us/employment_opportunities/

-Red Cross: adult/youth http://www.redcross.org/local/illinois/central-and-southern/volunteer

-Home Sweet Home Ministries: https://hshministries.org/participate/volunteer

-Humane Society: take a class, registration fee http://www.hscipets.org/volunteer1.htm

-Advocate Bromenn Medical Center  http://www.advocatehealth.com/bromenn-volunteers

-American Cancer Society http://www.cancer.org/involved/volunteer/index

-McLean County Arts Center http://www.mcac.wildapricot.org/page-1574201