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Post-Graduate Service

Learn more about an alumnus' experience with post-graduate service

"I think public service definitely is part of the Nazareth curriculum and I am proud to call it my alma mater..."

 - Alicia Scahill

    Member of AmeriCorps NCCC

Learn More About:

Explore Short-term/Summer Service Programs or
Long-term (a year or more!) Service Programs

There are many opportunities to enhance your professional skills while supporting community development projects.

The Center for Civic Engagement is here to help you explore the possibilities and complete the application process!

For more information please contact Nuala Boyle at or 389-2670

Short & Long-Term Service Q&A

Why do people participate in Short and Long-Term Service?

Many people desire to engage in community-building programs with more of their time than a weekly volunteer commitment. Service experiences provide the opportunity to partner with local or global organizations and build on the strengths of the community in which you are working.

What are some benefits of Short and Long-Term Service?

- You are gaining professional experience while contributing to and learning from your involvement in a particular community project.

- Especially in this economy, doing longer durations of service experience can boost your resume and provide you with a professional job within your field or degree while at the same time benefiting your community.

- You make new friends and gain insight into oneself and others.

- You understand the world better.

- You gain a cultural education.

- You work for social justice.

- You develop leadership skills.

- You support community development projects.

How long are service options?

You can choose to spend one week, 10-12 months, or more working in the field of your choice. If you are willing to pay for your experience, you can determine your length of stay in a domestic or international program. Most of these programs are secular in nature and range in duration from one week to only up to four months. On the other hand, most long-term domestic programs are 10-12 months while the majority of international programs are two years. However, there are several faith-based programs that offer a one year international option.

What types of living expenses will most service organizations provide?

- Room and Board

- Stipend

- Health Insurance

- Student Loan Deferment

- Professional Job

- Professional Training and Development

- AmeriCorps Education Awards for long-term commitments ($5300 to put towards your undergraduate or graduate school loans)

What are some examples of Short and Long-Term Service options?

During your term of service, you could work as a service provider in a nonprofit agency, as a teacher in a school, as an activities director in a shelter, or in countless other communities and positions.

What is the difference between Secular Service and Faith-Based Programs?

Typically, secular programs are run by governmental or a private organization and the service positions may vary greatly. The faith-based programs range from programs that simply want applicants to be open to reflecting on their service in a spiritual context and welcome all faith traditions, to programs that specifically require applicants to be comfortable within a certain faith perspective.

Secular Programs may cost you money because they are for-profit or have paid staff. That does not make these programs are any less reputable. On the other hand, most all of the faith-based service programs will not cost you any money except perhaps a small fund-raising amount and to pay for any vaccinations you would need if traveling internationally.

In either case, there are faith-based and secular programs out there that will meet your interests and needs.

Who can you talk to if you’re interested in learning more about participating in post-graduate service?

You should make an appointment to speak with someone in the Center for Civic Engagement. The Department of Community Service and Career Services can also assist you.

What are the application deadlines for short-term and long-term service?

In general, most short-term service programs have a rolling deadline based on your desired date of departure. The majority of long-term service programs have an application deadline of February, March, or early April of your senior year. So consider applying in January or February of your senior year. However, in this economy, the number of recent college grads applying to the service programs is greatly increasing. Thus, the earlier you can apply to a program the better! The application time-line for the Peace Corps is different, though. You should apply the summer between your junior and senior year in college in order to depart the summer after your graduation.

Are there any service options with a different type of application time-line?

The application time-line is much different for the Peace Corps. If you wanted to start your term of service with Peace Corps after you graduate, you would need to apply during the summer between your junior and senior year.

Also, If you are thinking of applying to a post-graduate service program that involves a master's degree or graduate school credits, you may have an application deadline of December or January of your senior year.

What is the Peace Corps' mission and goals?

Founded in 1961 by president JFK, the Peace Corps' mission has three simple goals:

1. Helping people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained people.

2. Helping promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served.

3. Helping promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.

How competitive is the Peace Corps?

Serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer is prestigious and the application process is very competitive. Each year over 15,000 applications are received for approximately 4,000 Volunteer spots.

How do you qualify for the Peace Corps?

Ninety percent of volunteer positions require a bachelor's degree. While the type of degree can help an applicant qualify for service, the Peace Corps also considers work, hobbies, and volunteer experiences that align with the skills it is seeking. With degrees in humanities and social sciences, volunteers are likely to be placed in health education, English teaching, community development, and agricultural programs. The best way for liberal arts majors to qualify for the Peace Corps is by gaining 30 hours or 3 months of tutoring or volunteer experience.

What is the application process like for the Peace Corps?

Peace Corps accepts invitation on a rolling basis; there is no application deadline. After you have submitted your completed application, you can expect to hear from a Peace Corps recruiter within two to three weeks.

The entire application process- from completion of your application to departure for service- takes an average of 9 months. We encourage you to apply 9-12 months before you will be ready to begin your service.

What is Rochester Youth Year?

Rochester Youth Year is an opportunity to serve in Rochester for 12 months while strengthening your connection to Nazareth College. Rochester Youth Year is an AmeriCorps VISTA supported program for recent college graduates, placing students with local community-based organizations. RYY recruits talented recent graduates to create or expand initiatives that address the various challenges facing youth and families in Rochester.

RYY Fellows work to develop measurable, sustainable services and programs that address the self-identified needs of Rochester's youth and aim to build on strengths and assets. As part of the program, RYY fellows work with local colleges including Nazareth to connect college resources with the needs of the host sites.

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