While the idea of volunteering has been around for quite some time, it was always been perceived with some amount of disapproval from parents and has been seen as an additional chore by the students. However, with times swiftly changing, volunteering has grown to be immensely popular and has become a trend among students.
The million dollar question to ponder over is, WHY. Why is there a sudden rise in volunteering by students? We believe that the desire to create something meaningful and to give back to the society is the top reason for any student to volunteer, but that is just the tip of the iceberg! At a much deeper level, it is because of the benefits a student reaps that volunteering has become so sought after.
Below is a list of 5 reasons why we think every student must volunteer at least once in their life! Take a look!
Reason 1: Develop your Skills
Volunteering exposes you to a whole new world of opportunities and at the same time helps you in honing your existing skills. It teaches you things that can’t be taught in classrooms. Take for instance, the ability to work in teams – we can’t stress enough how important that is in today’s job market and volunteering more often than not, involves working in teams. It brings out new hobbies, interests, and helps form opinions. You’ll be surprised at how good you’re at things you have never done and volunteering can give you opportunities to try all of them out. A volunteering experience can actually help you take a step forward towards deciding your career!
Reason 2: BOOST YOUR CAREER
According to a survey conducted by Chronicle of Higher Education and Public Media’s ‘Marketplace’, “Employers place more weight on experience, particularly internships, volunteering and employment during school vs. academic credentials including GPA and college major when evaluating a recent graduate for employment.”
While applying for a position, without much prior work experience to show to your employer, volunteering stints could vouch for your all-round abilities;your ability to organize events, make optimum utilization of the scant resources available, handling operations, managing people to name a few. Even while applying for higher studies in foreign countries, we believe these experiences will surely help you boost your CV.
Reason 3: Rediscover Yourself – Get Out Of The “Comfort Zone”
Volunteering widens your personality horizon by exposing you to different kinds of situations and environments that will make you “uncomfortable”. It is a exceptional process that pushes you to your breaking point and helps you unlearn and discover yourself. Travelling in adverse conditions and developing a resilience, living on meager resources and discovering your sense of empathy for people, all these will give you a new and appreciative perspective in life and help build character.
Reason 4: Meet Diverse Groups
Volunteering brings together people from diverse fields. Interaction with co-workers presents an excellent networking scope. It enhances cross-cultural understanding and develops people skills. We have often heard that lack of communication skills during interviews and in work places is a common pain point of most employers, so a volunteering stint might do wonders in this regard! In the end we’d like to add that when we interact with diverse groups, it helps widen our own thoughts and ideologies, and so can you.
Reason 5: Travel!
Going on vacation during some time off is all well and good for a while, but if you’re looking for something adventurous, fulfilling and productive, it would be an excellent idea to go down the volunteerism route. This allows you to travel to a hill,a forest or a beach and volunteer for a cause! It’s a good way to get to see your country from a completely different point of view, meet some interesting people, be independent and assist those who are less fortunate.
So remember, the next time you feel the urge to be productive and contribute to the enhancement of the society and yourself, just pack your bags and go volunteer. The longer, the better!
Image courtesy: changegrowlive.org