Becoming a volunteer doesn’t have to be a chore or even just something to chuck onto your resume and hope it impresses whoever is reading it.
As well as providing a platform for skill and network building, volunteering also allows students to get real world experience in areas of the community which they find interesting and even within organisations directly linked to future career goals.
Environmental volunteer, Bachelor of Arts/Laws student, and current Convenor of NUSA’s Women’s Collective Paris Drinkwater finds her volunteer work to be extremely rewarding.
“As cheesy as this sounds, I really wanted to be able to help in giving back to my community. Newcastle has a really strong sense of community and I have also grown up with such a good support network throughout my life and that has really encouraged me to be a helping hand to others.”
Similarly, first year Bachelor of Medical Radiation Science (Nuclear Medicine) student Huayi Zhang has found volunteering with University of Newcastle Volunteers to be especially beneficial as a first year student eager to meet like-minded people at University.
“I am passionate about giving back to the community and meeting new people to work towards achieving common goals. As an introverted person, volunteering has challenged me to step out of my comfort zone and allowed me to enhance both my communication and interpersonal skills.”
As an introverted person, volunteering has challenged me to step out of my comfort zone and allowed me to enhance both my communication and interpersonal skills.”
Huayi says volunteering should be seen as an addition to a student’s life rather then a mandatory task. “Volunteering is a great way to maintain a balanced university life so that students are not only buried in their books but are out and about making a difference in the community. As well as this, the experience and knowledge gained from volunteering would be of great value for them in terms of future employability.”
Sian Baynham, a third year Bachelor of Chemical Engineering (Honours) student and Peer Mentor agrees that there are many advantages of taking up volunteering that many student wouldn’t be aware of.
“When you volunteer you get to know more about yourself and what you are capable of, look at volunteering like a building with a thousand doors and behind each lies a need opportunity to learn new things, meet new people and find out what you enjoy before your graduate. When it comes to volunteering, you can’t lose.”
For more information about becoming a University volunteer or to sign up, click here!
Feature Image sourced from: University of Newcastle Volunteers (Volunteers at Ourimbah Volunteer Expo)