As school starts up, students work to create a strong routine and good habits. The homework, vigourous studying, and even work hours can make students feel that they have no time for family or friends, least of all, volunteering. However, making two to three hours per week available for volunteering can make a huge impact on a student’s personal and work life.

Volunteering is a great way to grow as a person and develop life skills. One can learn how to be a part of a team, how to lead, and gain perspective on the bigger picture through volunteering. Being a team player is an important life tool. You learn how to communicate with a variety of personalities and get an inside look at the issues, needs, and traditions of other cultures, ethnicities, or economical classes.

You can also use the experience of volunteering to become a better leader. Compared to a normal employee, a volunteer has more of a voice, allowing for more opportunities and leadership practice. A volunteer is more likely to be placed in a higher position that offers the opportunity to work with others to find creative solutions and ways to put them in place.

Perspective is another way that volunteering contributes to the personal growth of the volunteer. While the stress of college is at times unavoidable, volunteering for an organization that helps the less fortunate can help shed some light on the bigger picture. Gratitude is an excellent study tool and a channel for gained perspective.

Volunteering can also be very beneficial for one’s work life. One professional advantage of volunteering is finding your niche. From social media to grunt work, every nonprofit needs volunteers. Before acquiring the desired experience for a paid position, the skills and daily tasks of the job can be learned through volunteering. This experience will not only teach students what the job is like on a daily basis, but it will also look wonderful on a resume.

Once becoming a valuable volunteer, one gets the opportunity to work with staff and board members of the organization. This is a great way to make connections to powerful movers in your industry. Those connections then make it far easier to receive strong references from nonprofit team members. This can be the key to get your resume to the top of the pile.

Volunteering and the references that come with it will give school applications a huge boost. There are volunteering awards that come with scholarship cash. Some companies even offer non-traditional scholarships to those who’ve volunteered.  

Networking opportunities, professional references, and possible scholarships are huge ways that volunteering can improve a resume; while working as part of a team, as a leader, and gaining perspective improves life on a personal level. Whether professional or personal, volunteering can make a huge impact on all aspects of life.