A popular question among those considering their collegiate journey is in regards to the importance of volunteer work. How are volunteerism and college admissions intertwined and is it really that important? In short, volunteerism can be a deciding factor between accepting applicants. Just like any extracurricular activity, volunteering can boost a college application, setting an applicant apart from their peers.

The affect of volunteerism in college admissions

Beyond anything else, when an applicant has volunteer experience it shows who the applicant really is. Essays and entrance exams can deem intellect, but what a student does beyond academics can really shine a light on their character and if they would be a proper fit for a college or institution. By their donating time and skills, students have the ability to highlight their engagement within the community … colleges like that!


According to a recent article from Forbes researching volunteerism and college admissions , 58% of admissions personnel agreed that community service has a positive impact on the likelihood that an applicant is accepted to their college of university. Additionally, they agree that this work can aid in decision-making throughout the competitive admissions process. Moreover, applicants share the same values as the university through volunteering can stand out against peers.

How can students get involved in volunteering?

To gain a competitive advantage, students can choose from a variety of ways to volunteer in their communities. According to Kaplan and Independent Sector , some outstanding ways people have given back to their communities. Get inspired by the following examples:

  • Teens participating in Do Something recycled over a million aluminum cans that would have ended up in the landfill.
  • In one Kentucky city, volunteers collected 143,600 lbs. of fresh fruit and vegetables that would otherwise have gone to waste by gathering leftover produce from farms after harvest and day-old donations from supermarkets.
  • 63 million Americans volunteer about 8 billion hours of their time and talent to improve people’s lives and the natural world. 

In the end, volunteerism, has a lot of benefits, not only for the community and the people in it, but for the volunteer and their collegiate future as well. From teaching new skills and building upon existing strengths to promoting healthy activity, networking and more, giving back is often mutually beneficial to everyone involved.


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By Alysha Rice, Freelance Blogger + Marketer

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