10 Tips for Managing Student Volunteers
- Recognize and show your volunteers that they are valued.
- Outside of service activities, involve student volunteers in social events.
- Welcome volunteers' suggestions and implement their input and feedback when possible.
- Make volunteers feel needed, but don't over use them.
- Give volunteers jobs they feel comfortable doing. If the task is a new one, pair them with other volunteers who are experienced and can provide leadership.
- If you make it sound exciting, people will be excited to get involved!
- Provide clear desciptions of student tasks and help them understand what role that task will play in the organizaations' work as a whole.
- Don't assume that students who are required to do service feel burdened to do so; these students may well become your best volunteers.
- Make opportunities accessible to students.
- Prepare multiple tasks. Students are often enthusiastic about their community service placement. You may be surprised at how quickly they complete their tasks.
Be Prepared for Big Questions
Many students are involved in service because they want to learn more about the populations that interest them. When they ask questions like "Why are people homeless?" or What are the effects of racism on people?" your responses to these questions play an important role in their commitment to long-term community involvement and activism.