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Is volunteering a lot enough to make me stand out when applying to colleges?

I am homeschooled, so I don't have very many extracurricular activity opportunities. I do volunteer a lot, usually 150-200 hours a year. Will that be enough to make me stand out when I apply to colleges, or no?
Thanks! #college #business #education #higher-education #volunteering #extracurriculars #community-service

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Eula’s Answer

Is volunteering a lot enough to make me stand out when applying to colleges?


Yes, Absolutely. Volunteering says a lot about you.Plus, it strengthens skills of whatever you are offering.
Teaching someone else, is the best way to learn. Plus you get to interact with other people.


Whatever amount you volunteer, will make you stand out, and everybody understands that you have a life of your own.
But one thing, if you do volunteer do it for something that has great meaning to you, otherwise it would be a chore and a drag. You won't enjoy it as much.
How could you possibly volunteer for doggie poop collection, if the idea alone makes you revolt.
better to do something you already enjoy, whether it is guitar playing, coloring, word-search in dictionaries or planting trees.
Do something you love and the rest is pancake.
Let me know if this helps. O.K.?


I am homeschooled, so I don't have very many extracurricular activity opportunities. I do volunteer a lot, usually 150-200 hours a year. Will that be enough to make me stand out when I apply to colleges, or no? Thanks!

Thank you comment icon Thank you so much for your answer! It was very helpful to me. Angelina
Thank you comment icon Great. Glad to help. Ask anytime you have a question, we are all always here for you. Eula Biezen
Thank you comment icon Thank you, that means a lot to me! Angelina
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Ken’s Answer

Hi Angelina!


It is good to volunteer, but you are looked at as a package and volunteering is only one aspect that is evaluated. To answer your question - the answer is no. What would catch the eye of someone would be if your volunteering had a focus, rather than a random accumulation of hours for the sake of accumulating volunteer hours. Having a focus, say the exploration and familiarization of a possible career area and future major in college, would show that you were organized and becoming familiar enough regarding a focus in college to give them a better opportunity to view your success in college. People who are focused have a greater potential for success.

Thank you comment icon Thank you, Mr. Simmons! I volunteer at a lot of summer camps (different ones), as well as some fundraisers. I also have been volunteering at a local medical campus once a week for the past 6 months, and I am hoping to volunteer at University Hospital in pediatrics this summer. Will that be enough to make me stand out, since I hope to go into Pediatric nursing? Thank you again! Your response was very helpful to me! Angelina
Thank you comment icon It is a good start. A good next step is to talk to the head of alumni relations at Lakeland to arrange to meet and talk to graduates who are working in pediatric nursing to get their advice. Also, talk to the people that you have met at your volunteer experiences to ask them to write letters of reference regarding your volunteer experience. Every one that you meet and have met can help with your volunteer and college experience. See if there is a University Hospital office in the Mentor area that deals with pediatrics and ask now about volunteering. You do not need to wait until summer to make contacts. Too many people wait too long and miss out. The early bird catches the worms. Ken Simmons
Thank you comment icon Here is a good place to start. They have pediatrics in Mentor. Just go to the facility and let them know that you are interested in volunteering. http://www.uhhospitals.org/mentor Ken Simmons
Thank you comment icon Okay, thank you! I will look into contacting the head of alumni relations at Lakeland. Asking people where I volunteer for letters of recommendation is a really good idea....thank you! Also, thank you for including the link for the UH in Mentor! I will definitely contact them ASAP about volunteering! Thanks again! Angelina
Thank you comment icon You are welcome! Check this out and arrange to talk to graduates of this program also: http://www.lakelandcc.edu/web/about/nursing-departments Ken Simmons
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Tom’s Answer

That's great that you volunteer. Keep up the good work! Colleges are much more interested in the depth and impact of your volunteer service rather than the hours you spend. They want to know what motivates you to volunteer and how it relates to your personal passions. Are your volunteer hours spent focused with a single organization or is it spread among several groups?-- colleges will be interested in how you decided where to volunteer and understanding how it has changed your perspectives or inspired you to do more. And they are also acutely attuned to volunteering for resume padding versus passion-motivated volunteering, so be honest with yourself about your motivations for volunteering.

Thank you comment icon Thank you so much! I do a lot of summer camps (different ones, though) and I have been volunteering at a medical campus for the past 6 months. Also, I am hoping to volunteer at my local hospital this summer for 8 weeks. I am hoping to go into Pediatric Nursing, so I'm trying to volunteer at medical facilities as much as I can! Thanks again! Angelina
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Troy’s Answer

This is so great to hear you are really involved with causes. These sorts of things enable the colleges to see you are a well rounded person that cares a lot about others. They are looking for that, absolutely, they are looking for leadership and what makes you unique and how involved in things you are. Which for your case is great things like clubs, sports, activities, volunteering, leading projects/initiatives, all those things demonstrate your commitment and all shine through. My best to you and have a great one today!

Thank you comment icon Thank you so much, Mr. Golba! I appreciate your answer! Have a great day, too! Angelina
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