Why Community Service Is So Important for College Admissions

Are you wondering why community service is so important and what is the impact it causes on your college admission? Then here is an article for you  to understand better about these services and their impact on college admissions.

Updated by Sreelekha RK on 16th April 2020

There are high chances of losing an opportunity to join the college of your dreams due to many reasons out of which, community service is one. It is considered that there are many students who will be wanting to join the same college as you, thus making the competition too high. 

Are you wondering why community service is so important and what is the impact it causes on your college admission? Then here is an article for you  to understand better about these services and their impact.

What is community service?

It is a service that is considered to be a non-paying job performed by one student or a group of learners for the benefit of their community or its institutions. It is a service that is different from volunteering since it is not always done on a willing basis. 

The benefits of community service are as follows.

  • Volunteering helps you make new friends and contacts which results in enhancing your social and networking skills

  • It boosts your confidence level and helps in battling depression.

  • It can provide career experience and can teach you valuable job skills

  • It brings fun and satisfaction to your life

Why Is Community Service so Important?

According to research, community service is essential to colleges due to the reasons that are as follows.

  • Students will start working effectively on campus outside of class.

  • Students are likely to commit to the university’s mission.

  • They share the institution’s values.

Volunteering in your community will exhibit a level of civil consciousness and compassion for others, and it can display issues that you’re passionate about. Collectively, this will help form an absolute picture of who you are as a person. 

Make the most of your community service experiences by:

  • Choosing schemes that relate to your desires and interests.

  • Binding to one or two meaningful projects for a maintained length of time, rather than rushing to complete most volunteer hours.

  • Prioritizing the schemes or projects you have chosen. 

How will colleges evaluate your community service?

Institutes value these services that you are eager about, that you are committed to, that improve your society or school and that enhances skills and increases your knowledge of diversity and ethics. It is recommended to follow the points that are mentioned further.

  • Students must engage in the chosen service which means that the volunteering possibilities you opt should be a cause you are passionate about.

  • It is told that there is no need for playing with community service by seeking high-profile or fascinating service opportunities. The emotional and ethical knowledge and skills generated by community service activities are more important.

  • Students should spend at least a year in continued service or community engagement (referring to working in groups on community issues, like decorating a local park or taking part in an environmental action). 

  • Individual service is considered valuable as well, but community engagement develops problem-solving skills, group awareness, and a perception of the common good. 

  • Students must additionally work on community service projects that expand their opinion of diversity by collaborating with diverse groups on school and community issues.

  • Thus it is not about how much service you do and it is not about serving your community in ways that no candidate has ever served their community earlier.

  • According to the research, consistency and commitment are important as working on one scheme over a long period of time is better than working on ten different schemes to secure hours.

How to Find Community Service Opportunities?

Do you have a specific interest or skill that can make you a generous volunteer? Use it as a community service compass with the help of your college itself.

Communicate with your school or college- counselors and most of your teachers can help you to find community service opportunities that suit your interests and academic needs. 

How many hours of community service do you require?

Colleges will not look at the quantity of community service you complete, but at the quality of the work you accomplish although generally, you must aim to accomplish at least 50 hours of the service throughout your high school career. 

But unless your school or college has a community service requirement for graduation, the total amount of time you spend doing the service is not really much important.

Although we agree, just a few hours over the course of four years would not approve that you are very civic-minded but it will definitely help you in getting into a better college. There is no need to fatigue yourself or fall behind in institutions because you have set a high goal of numbers of the service hours.

How to write about the service on your college applications?

If you can think of an important experience that genuinely influenced you, a thoughtful essay about community service may be the way to go. Thus, If you choose to write an essay about your community service which you will be submitting during your college admission or in response to the short question and answer that is given by the college you are planning to get admitted, there are certain principles you must follow which are as follows,

  • Remember what colleges consider important when it comes to community services such as a real passion, supported commitment, community engagement, ethics, diversity, emotional awareness, and skills developed. 

  • Be thoughtful and reflective. Describe everything you learned from the service and the experience you earned that helped you in the growth of your knowledge and skills.

  • At the very same time, be honest and specific or try to be true to yourself. Avoid general statements on how the service made you a better person or motivated you to recognize what you have. Think strongly about what you have really learned through the service.

  • Focus on one story or experience so that it can be made precise and simple and help portray a better picture idea of how your community service activities have impacted you and your aspect.

Conclusion

Community service is of utmost importance to colleges. It helps you in displaying your leadership qualities and dedication level and that leadership needs to be in an area of continued and illustrated interest. Sometimes the best way to do that is through a service opportunity that is just as right as this co-operation. Focus on hard work, long-term engagement, and something you are truly enthusiastic and passionate about.