How to Leverage Summer Break for Community Work

Volunteering and community work demonstrates a level of civic awareness and empathy for others, and it can reflect issues that you’re passionate about. Top colleges like to have students who are “good citizens” and want to do good. Many students try to check this off on the list by doing a few weeks’ work. But that is not good enough to impress the admission teams at the top colleges. Learn how to leverage your summer break for community work and improve your college admissions chances.

Does Community Work Matter for College Admissions?

  • As reported by Forbes, in a recent survey of 264 admissions officers at US colleges, 58% of admissions officers agreed that community service has a positive impact on a student’s acceptance.
  • More importantly, 53% stated that community service was a tiebreaker between equally qualified students. Additionally, 61% of admissions leaders at private four-year universities reported community service as a tiebreaker.
  • Additionally, according to the World Economic Forum, by 2030 there will be a huge demand for higher cognitive skills such as creativity, critical thinking, and decision-making. Today’s world needs future leaders who are socially conscious, responsive, and responsible.

What do Colleges Look For?

In a 2016 report published by Harvard’s Graduate School of Education, a coalition of college admissions officers joined together to create and endorse recommendations related to community service and ethical engagement.

Their report emphasized attributes such as being passionate about the cause you are invested in, showing long-term commitment, and values that service generates such as an understanding of diversity and emotional and ethical awareness. Read more on what do top colleges look for in applications.

Why is Community Work so important for College Admissions?

Leadership and community service is your avenue to show them how you have made a difference and how you plan to be a good community citizen.

Ivy League admissions blogs share that colleges can tell when students are doing community service solely to impress admissions and this does not go over well. When admissions place value on community service they are looking to see if you have picked an issue that matters to you and made a difference in the same. 

According to the Forbes survey, community service is important to colleges because it indicates that the student:

  • Is likely to be active on campus outside of class.
  • Is likely to contribute to the university’s mission.
  • Shares the school’s values.

Increased Emphasis on Community Work for College Admissions Post-COVID

Post-pandemic, several colleges have opted for test-optional policies. Without test scores, it’s likely to have a relative rise in the importance of other parts of an application including community involvement. Historically, colleges have looked at extracurriculars as a way to better understand students beyond their letter grades, but these have also been curtailed because of coronavirus. 

Hence, you need to think out-of-box in order and spend time helping your communities. Colleges are bound to consider these kinds of volunteer work even more seriously. Check out the list of test-blind and test-optional colleges for 2023.

community work summer program for high school students in India 2022

Examples of High-Impact Community Work that Look Impressive during College Admissions

  • Collecting non-perishable foods for a community following a natural disaster to turning a love of soccer into an effort to build fields in underserved communities.
  • Volunteering as a crisis counselor to provide a sounding board for troubled teens to express their concerns and stress and providing relief for them to reapproach their situations with a clearer, calmer mind.
  • Animal shelters are always looking for people to walk dogs, clean cages, and volunteer at adoption events. If you’re an animal lover, volunteer with your local rescue.
  • Volunteer to pick up trash on the side of the road, clean up and preserve a park, or cover Grafitti on buildings.
  • If you’re talented at art, volunteer to run an after-school art class at the elementary school, or athletes can show kids how to play football.
  • Peer-to-peer mentoring can make a huge difference in someone’s life. Help peers with schoolwork, engage in fun activities and assist them with skill development, based on your own talents.
  • Work with your local library to organize a free reading hour with the goal of helping children develop an interest in reading and improve their own literacy. 

Read How to Plan Extracurriculars for College Admissions.

So, what are the options and how to leverage the summer break and get involved in impactful community work in 2022?

This is where the summer program by TribesforGOOD can be more than handy for you.

Community Work Summer Program for High School Students by TribesforGOOD

The Global Challenges and Social Justice summer program by TribesforGOOD celebrates the diversity in you and being mindful of the interconnectedness of challenges we face as collective citizens of the planet. It offers you an opportunity to work on multifaceted themes.

What will you do?

You will be working on global issues like Education Inequity, Gender Justice, Climate Change, LGBTQ+, etc.

TribesforGOOD’s Global Challenges and Social Justice is a holistic program structurally designed to help you (a high schooler)  understand the intricacies of social impact space and support you to create a positive change in your community. You’d get a chance to work on a live project collectively that impacts urban communities with your team on a theme that stirs your soul

Community Work Themes 2022

You can choose from the below theme based on your interest:

  • Poverty Reduction/ Education & Digital Inclusion
  • Gender Justice/ LGBTQ+/ Human Trafficking
  • Mental Health and Well Being
  • Accelerating Climate Ambition and Sustainability
  • Animal Rights & Welfare
  • Economic Security & Financial Inclusion
  • Social Impact Research
  • Art + Activism = Artivism
  • Health & Period Poverty
  • STEM, Gender & Economic Security

About TribesforGOOD

Since 2018, TribesforGOOD has actively mobilized people with causes: young, old, professionals, and zealous citizens like you to act on issues that matter and create an impact.

They have nurtured, supported, and encouraged curiosity among 500+ high school students by exposing them to on-ground realities, taking learning beyond books, and making a difference in communities in Delhi, Mumbai, and Bangalore.

Summer Program Outline

  • Live classes to deepen your knowledge about the social issue
  • Meet the NGO- Virtual Fieldwork
  • Learning by Doing through a Live Project
  • Team building & Project Management (collab, coordinate), Lead Action, Collective leadership, practical innovation.
  • Primary and Secondary Research
  • Joy of making a difference : Priceless!
  • Lastly Pitching your Passion Project coherently

Want to Apply for Community Work Summer Program?

Fill Out This Form to Apply and/or Get a Call Back

How can TribesforGOOD’s Summer Program on Community Work help you?

Being a Change-maker is a life-long process of learning and unlearning. The journey brings out the best version of you: your passion, creativity, and entrepreneurial spirit.

  • Your sustained immersion in a social impact project highlights your drive, dedication and commitment for working towards a better society. It sets you apart in a college application! Your sustained immersion in a social impact project highlights your drive, dedication and commitment for working towards a better society. It sets you apart in a college application!
  • The experiences you have and the wonderful mentors you’d meet will guide you to scale up your passion project to help a wider community and make a difference. This can be your chance to Field test your Social Impact Ideas!
  • Friends with Causes: You’d get a chance to form meaningful connections with Changemakers like you from all over India. Changemakers never stop learning. Your Alumni Network is one of the most creative and proactive Tribe constantly learning and working towards a better planet.
  • GCSJ program helps you shape your profile to stand out and showcase the impact you create. It’s time to put yourself on the Impact (or Change) Map!

All of this while doing what you love!

Testimonials from Previous Cohort

Summer Program Fee, Dates and Other Details

  • Who Can Attend: Grade 9 – 12 Students
  • Dates: Multiple Batches (with 6-8 students per cohort) – 1st Apr, 15th Apr, 1st May, 15th May, 1st Jun, 15th Jun, 1st Jul & 15th Jul
  • Duration: 4 weeks (3 classes per week) + 1 year-long mentorship
  • Mode: Virtual (Classes on Zoom or Google Meet)
  • Fee: Rs. 25,000 + GST (total: Rs. 29,500) / USD $400
  • How to Apply: Fill out this Google Form
  • Certificate and Letter of Recommendation will be provided to all participating students

Faculty Members and Mentors

Community Service Summer Program for College Applications

Featured Image Source: GoingIvy

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Tanmoy Ray
I am a Career Adviser & Admission Consultant. Additionally, I also manage Operations at Stoodnt. I did my Masters from the UK (Aston University) and have worked at the University of Oxford (UK), Utrecht University (Netherlands), University of New South Wales (Australia) and MeetUniversity (India).
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