Monthly Archives: June 2019

Boosting Your Resume with Volunteering

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Many people don’t think of volunteering as something to talk about with colleges or employers, but showing up to volunteer in your community tells a lot about your personality and can boost your resume! First, volunteering demonstrates a large amount of leadership skills. It tells people you are willing to step up and help out with challenges you see. On projects, nothing will get accomplished if there are no leaders offering ideas and helping to guide people towards a solution. This doesn’t mean you have to be the most vocal on a project. Leaders will often delegate tasks in order to see that a project is completed on time and correctly. The most important thing I learned about leadership in college is that leaders are nothing without a strong team.

This leads me to the next thing volunteering demonstrates on a resume. Volunteering is often a team effort and shows you can be successful as a member of a team. There are many benefits to this team-based approach. With that boost from your fellow volunteers, time passes by faster and work gets done with ease. Working on a team also means you can get along with other people and are willing to compromise when issues come up. This is not to say that volunteering on your own is not possible; however, many projects are a team-based approach to meeting community needs.



Adding volunteering to your resume also shows great time management skills, as you set your priorities in helping the community instead of playing another round of Fortnite or binge watching your favorite show on Netflix. People will appreciate that you took the time to serve meals at a homeless shelter for a couple of hours on a Saturday morning or built dog houses for your local Humane Society. Time management will set you up for success in college when you have a very flexible schedule and go to class only a couple of hours a day.  This skill is a crucial skill for becoming an effective employee.

In addition, volunteering builds adaptability. For a multitude of reasons, volunteer projects are not always predictable. For example, it could be raining on the day you were going to do landscaping or you don’t have the right supplies to paint your city’s mural.  Situations like these lead to problem solving. You have to figure out how to make the day a success, even when missing resources and responding to things outside your control – like the weather. You may have to think outside of the box or be creative. These are definitely skills people want to see on your resume. The ability to problem solve and adapt can be transferred to all situations in life.



It’s also very important to include any service awards or distinction you received from volunteering. Did you just get your 100 hours of service or were you honored as YVC volunteer of the year? Put it on your resume! It shows that other people recognize the work you are doing and want to celebrate you. This one can be the hardest sometimes because usually volunteering is about doing good things even when no one is rewarding or paying you.

“Often we set out to make a difference in the lives of others only to discover we have made a difference in our own.” —Ellie Braun-Haley

We may start a volunteer project to help the seniors in our communities or to improve the environment by helping clean an ecosystem, and we end up learning more from it than we ever thought possible. Don’t discount the value of a project just because you didn’t get paid to do it. I encourage you to volunteer and to include the skills you learn while doing service on your resume.

Boosting Your Resume with Volunteering


Hello everyone! My name is Kaylee, and I’m a part of the YVC Headquarters’ team! I just graduated from Wichita State University last year, and with graduation came change in every direction. Going to classes, writing papers, and studying for exams have been my normal for the past 13 years, and often times it felt like school was all I had time to concentrate on. I remember in high school my life consisted of two things: school and extracurricular activities. When I was applying for colleges and going to scholarship competitions, I started noticing a common theme: people wanted to know what skills I had gained from jobs, internships, or high school classes. I always felt behind because I didn’t have any jobs in high school. I focused on my academics and didn’t realize until college that I had missed talking about a key element in my life: volunteering in my community!


An Unlikely Beginning: Kickball and a Babydoll

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Looking back, the stars aligned perfectly for me to begin my service with YVC when I was in 7th grade. My social studies class was having a debate with the topic “should volunteer hours be required to graduate high school?” Naturally, I was on the affirmative side! The particular class that I was in met for the beginning of class, broke for lunch, and then finished our class period after lunch. On the exact day of our debate YVC representatives were in the cafeteria recruiting for the upcoming summer! I took this opportunity not only to sign up for service, but also to invite all of my classmates to join me! Little did I know a lifelong relationship to service would be sparked in the cafeteria of my middle school.



My first service experience was at a local camp for children with a variety of disabilities. One morning we were playing a game of kickball with campers when Jessica* didn’t want to participate. Jessica always carried a special doll with her, and I had the idea to tell her the doll wanted to go up to bat! I had the doll kick the ball and run the bases, which inspired Jessica to join in! Doug and Lisa, two of the staff members, asked me afterwards how I had thought to do that. It was a very instinctive choice that I couldn’t explain very well… but, their reactions made me feel like I might have a special skill or talent in working with people, especially those who may need special accommodation. I went on to volunteer at camp for almost every summer until I graduated high school, when I was hired to work as a lifeguard! Even now, I visit camp every summer and see many of the campers that I’ve grown up with.



I can look back in my life and recall the moment with Doug and Lisa as a springboard for me. Their confidence in me as a capable person and their support was a foundation for me to set high goals for myself. Because of my YVC experience at camp, I knew I wanted to go to college and what I wanted to study while I was there! I ended up changing my mind several times, which in the end worked out wonderfully. While I was in college, my experience volunteering at camp really prepared me up for success in collaborating, taking direction from others, and finding a common purpose within communities. I’m so grateful for the lifelong friendships, the experience afforded me, and the many doors of opportunity that were opened because of YVC. I am also thankful for my mentors and guides through life. They watched me grow up at camp and helped me become the person I am today.


“Compassion is not a virtue — it is a commitment. It’s not something we have or don’t have — it’s something we choose to practice.” -Brené Brown


Kaite Young-Kendall grew up on the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan in Muskegon, Michigan. She earned her Bachelors of Applied Arts in Child Development from Central Michigan University and has since worked in a variety of roles with children such as a full time National Service member with AmeriCorps in a Head Start, with the Children’s Defense Fund program Freedom School and currently is an early childhood educator at the North Campus Children’s Center and the Children’s Program Coordinator for local nonprofit, Friends In Deed. Kaite has a deep passion for serving toddlers and their families, as well as supporting families with anti-poverty education. Most recently she presented at the Learning Stories conference in Orange County, California. Kaite is looking forward to starting a Master of Social work program at Eastern Michigan University in the fall. Kaite resides in Ypsilanti, Michigan with her partner, Tim, puppy, Lola Jean, and cat, Kim.

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