career opportunity

College Students (Like You) Could End Child Poverty

Today marks National Red Nose Day! What is it you may ask? Well, it’s a day dedicated to raising money for children in poverty in America and around the world. This national fundraising campaign is run by the non-profit Comic Relief USA with the goal of helping to end child poverty through the use of comedy. Since 1988, National Red Nose Day has managed to raise over 1 billion dollars!  As college students, you may wonder what you could possibly do to help raise money when you yourself are struggling to keep up with college funds. That’s perfectly fine! There are multiple ways you can help raise money with little to no money. Even donating some of your time can not only help others, but in turn, benefit you as well in the long run. Here’s how you can do it:

How can you help?

1. You can stop by your local Walgreens or subsidiary Duane Reade and purchase a red nose for $1. Donning the red nose symbolizes a kid-friendly air that both entertains and brings awareness to child poverty. Just donating $1 can help provide 11 meals for hungry children through your local Feeding America Food Banks.

2. You can get onto the Red Nose Day website and donate money using either PayPal or card. Even small donations help!

3. You can either find or start your own fundraiser to aid children in poverty without having to spend any money. If you choose to start your own fundraiser, you have the choice of either fundraising on your own, joining a team, or starting a new team. At the Red Nose Day website, they provide you with a list of ideas on how you can start up a fundraiser.

4. You can tune into NBC from 8:00 pm-10:00 pm on Thursday, May 24th and watch three different shows “Celebrity Ninja Warrior for Red Nose Day”, “Running Wild with Bear Grylls for Red Nose Day” and finally the live broadcasting of the “Red Nose Day Special”. Each show is tied together to celebrate Red Nose Day. Throughout the three shows, you will be entertained, learn about the programs supported by Red Nose Day, and provided with the opportunity to donate to the charity through phone calls. To learn more about the programs, click here.

5. You can spread the word! Making others aware of this campaign increases the chances of others donating their time or money to help!

How can you benefit from volunteering?

As a college student, volunteering for a non-profit organization not only helps out your community, but also keeps your skills up-to-date, expands your network, and provides yourself with the opportunity to get a potentially paying job.

Putting your volunteer work in your resume helps you showcase your skills, experience, and expertise. When employers look through a resume, they tend to only look at one for 6-10 seconds. In order to make it count, you need to have something that stands out. Red Nose Day or any other volunteer work is a great way to do so.

Even being a part of some form of Greek life on your campus can benefit you greatly. By being associated with a sorority/fraternity, you get involved in some shape or form of volunteer work. Employers will most likely take notice of this on your resume. According to the New Jersey Institute of Technology, the Greek system is the largest network of volunteers in the US, with members donating over 10 million hours of volunteer services each year.

If you want to find other non-profit volunteer organizations near you, click here.

How to Stand Out in Your Summer Internship

When companies take on a summer intern, the odds are very good that they’re not just looking for someone to fetch coffee and make copies. Internships are a recruiting tool for many employers. At the end of the summer, interns who stand out are often told that a job will be waiting for them after they graduate — they may even be asked to work part-time while they’re still in school. Even if you’re not offered a job at the company where you intern, you can still gain valuable professional experience and make connections that may come in handy when you’re starting your career.

As an intern, don’t make the mistake of thinking that you’re flying under the radar. Conduct yourself as if you’re being observed and judged at all times; this way, you won’t miss any opportunities to make a strong professional impression. Here are five ways to stand out in your summer internship:

1. Do what you’re asked to do and then some.
Complete every task (no matter how menial) with enthusiasm and energy — then offer to do more. This is the best way to be given more challenging tasks where you can really shine. It’s also a good way to make yourself indispensable to your employer and coworkers.

2. Make yourself heard.
Since an internship only lasts for a few weeks, you don’t have a lot of time to show what you can do. You could be a valuable asset to any employer, but no one will know that if you don’t speak up. Contribute to brainstorming sessions, ask questions and make suggestions. When it comes time to evaluate the summer interns, make sure that people know who you are for all the right reasons.

3. Write it down.
A lot of information may be coming at you in the early days of your internship, from assignment directions to tidbits about company culture. No one can remember everything, so take good notes. Review your notes often and jot down questions and assignment ideas to pitch to your supervisor.

4. Stay positive.
No matter how many hours you’re asked to work, keep a positive attitude. Your employer probably paid his or her dues to get to their current position and expects you to do the same. By showing your enthusiasm and keeping a smile on your face, you’ll be sending the message that you’re enjoying the opportunity that your internship provides.

5. Let everyone know what you want to do.
Make sure your supervisor and coworkers know about your future career plans. This could influence the assignments they give you doing your internship and could help you land a position with the company after your internship is over. It will also show that you’re motivated and thinking about your future career.

A summer internship can be a great experience but you’ve got to be proactive if you want to get the maximum benefit. Don’t be shy, get to know everyone on the job. You never know when a contact from your internship will turn into a career opportunity.

 

Melissa Woodson is the community manager and LLM guide for Washington University in St. Louis’ @WashULaw, a top-tier online LLM in U.S. law. In her spare time, she enjoys running, cooking, and making half-baked attempts at training her dog.