College is a time when young people are told that they are supposed to find themselves or a deeper purpose in life. For many Gen Z, it can be a harrowing task to discover the “real world, ” especially when the real world isn’t much more than campus and home. But what if you volunteered abroad while in college to broaden your perspective and prepare yourself for the future?
If you’re a Gen Z in college and panicking that you’ll be thrown into the real world too abruptly, a short-term volunteer program abroad may be the perfect solution to help you acquire a deeper global understanding. Consider these real-world advantages of volunteering abroad:
1. Productive use of free time
Volunteering abroad is a great way to spend spring break, summer vacation, or J-term instead of sitting on a couch, binge-watching Netflix. You could be having the time of your life and making unforgettable memories rather than ordering pizza for an entire week. Teach conversational English, nurture children, help repair classrooms and community buildings, plant household gardens, and share your unique skills in new and significant ways. Your help is needed on multiple community projects.
2. Lifelong friendships
Many lifelong friendships are made in college. Why constrain your relationships with campus? Bring your friends on a volunteer adventure with you and take advantage of Global Volunteers’ Companion Discount by referring them to your program.
But, even if you travel solo, you won’t leave the program that way. Between bonding with your volunteer teammates and serving the local people, odds are you’ll make lifelong friends on this journey. It’s not uncommon for volunteers to return to the same community every few years because of the relationships formed.
3. Workplace advantage
It can give you an edge in the workforce. Volunteering is attractive on resumes and can even be the deciding factor between two otherwise identical applicants. Two people with the same work experience, same degree, and same age are likely to have a similar chance of getting hired. But a person with volunteer experience, especially abroad experience, has an advantage. They have a deeper cultural and worldly understanding.
Serving and exploring a new country is an experience of a lifetime. The people you meet and the lives you touch (and vice versa) will be with you forever. It’s an amazing opportunity to explore the world or United States in a meaningful way. The opportunities to travel, meet new people, assist a community, and acquire new knowledge about yourself and your place in the world are invaluable treasures received through volunteering.
5. The warm and welcoming community
Global Volunteers offers safe and secure lodging and three meals a day. When you’re not volunteering, you have ample free time to participate in local activities and enjoy cultural attractions in the area. While Global Volunteers’ non-profit status prohibits us from planning your free time activities, our local staff can provide general guidance and advice – sharing a list of activities explored and enjoyed by previous volunteers.
Read more here about volunteering abroad in college or, click on the button below to chat with a Volunteer Coordinator.
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