The Job That Makes a Difference

by Laura Roche
(Tucson, AZ USA)

The Job: That Makes a Difference

Last week, I was at a job interview. I like everyone else that reached the interview portion of the process, I have the required degree for the position. Interviews are about your experience, your skills and your abilities as a team-member and a leader. Thanks to AmeriCorps, I was able to say to the interviewing panel.

I worked with a multi-generational and multi-cultural team to successfully build a decent house for a decent family in my community. I also, worked in one of the top museums in the world in a variety of positions where I learned the depth and breadth of nonprofit management in a real-world service environment. I feel I have the skills, experience and leadership qualities to lead this department successfully.

A degree is simply, not enough. The riddle college student face is, ‘You can’t get the job without experience and you can’t get experience without the job.’ Employers what to see that you are able to manage projects from beginning to end, able to face the challenges of the ‘real-world’ on a budget, and able to work as a member of team to make the right judgment on a time-schedule. Organizations want to hire a leader.

Q) How can you get the experience you need while you are in college?

Q) How can you get this experience while earning college credits?

Q) How can you get this experience will earning a generous scholarship?

Q) How can you build the professional network and get the professional references you need while you are in college?

A) AmeriCorps: A Make Difference, Get Things Done, Earn Money for College

AmeriCorps is a United States government program dedicated to serving communities with disaster services, economic opportunity services, education, environmental stewardship, healthy futures programs and services to assist military families. AmeriCorps provides students with the opportunities to gain the experience they need while they serve their nation and community in a
meaningful way. AmeriCorps has a variety of programs to fit the needs of the student. You will need to check with the national website and talk to your local AmeriCorps office to find out which program is the right for your education.

AmeriCorps members receive a living stipend (bi-weekly pocket-money), deferment of student loans and insurance. AmeriCorps member also receive the Segal AmeriCorps Education Award. The AmeriCorps website states, “since the inception of AmeriCorps in 1994, more than 800,000 alumni have earned more than $2.4 billion in education awards” and “as a reference, the amount of a full-time education award for national positions approved in the 2014 fiscal year (which runs from October 1, 2013, to September 30, 2014) is $5,645.” As an added bonus many colleges match the AmeriCorps Segal Award. Many colleges like my alma mater match the Segal Scholarship. Prescott College matched my award and doubled my AmeriCorps earnings.

A total of 11, 290 dollars!

The monetary benefits of AmeriCorps are generous. It is the non-monetary benefits that make the program life-changing. An AmeriCorps member gains real-world experience, becomes a member of a team, overcomes challenges, connects to their community and learns the value of service. As an AmeriCorps member, I gained real job skills and experiences that helped me get accepted into graduate school and assisted me in getting my dream job. I have the skills and experience that employers and graduate programs are looking for.

In AmeriCorps, I became a leader. I am hoping to continue a life of service and join the PeaceCorps. PeaceCorps also have a very generous scholarship program. As a member of AmeriCorps you can make difference, get things done and earn money for college. AmeriCorps made me a better person. Check out their website and find the AmeriCorps program that is right for you, today.

Thanks Laura for sharing your experience with the AmeriCorps program. It is a wonderful program. Best of luck to you.

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Full Time Student, Part Time EMT

by Thomas Raab
(Lander, Wyoming, USA)

Full Time Student, Part Time EMT

Attending a four year college where tuition is $25,000 per year is not easy to afford, especially when you will be in a pocket of debt when you graduate. I wanted a job that would see me through college as well as open up multiple career possibilities after graduation, and allow me to gain virtues proper to a studious and disciplined intellectual life. Thus, I chose the Emergency Medical Services.

As an EMT Basic, I am paid $12 per hour and work on a schedule very compatible with college life. I either work shifts at the ambulance station on the weekend when I am not in classes, or I can listen to my pager at night while sleeping in my own dorm room, as long as I am able to be in uniform and at the station to answer any call within five minutes. So far, over the course of my current Sophomore year, I have made $6,000 while also being a full time student. There are many career opportunities available that stem from this line of work, such as paramedic, flight medic, SWAT medic, ER technician, Search and Rescue or using this job as a basis for entering nursing school or medical school.

This job not only pays well and provides excellent opportunities, but it also forces one to gain valuable time management, problem solving, and stress management skills which are so valuable to a student. Every 911 call I answer can be high-stress, where I have a patient I must quickly assess, diagnose, treat, and transport in a very short amount of time. This job also requires good public relations, excellent communication, and teamwork, as an EMT must be able to work with difficult patients or the unruly family-members of a patient and communicate with fellow emergency and hospital healthcare providers.

That this job is ideal for a student is evident. What other line of work allows a full time student to care for the sick and injured, to save lives, and to be a community hero? What other job allows the student to gain skills which not only aid in performing student responsibilities but also form some virtuous qualities necessary to being a beneficial member of society upon graduation? Let my own example, at least, bear witness to the efficacy of this profession, and that what I have written is not a matter of opinion but a matter of fact. If there is a job more noble or worthwhile for the student, I do not know it.

Thanks Thomas for sharing your student job experience as an EMT. It sounds like a great experience and a noble job. Thanks for your work!

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