The majority of parents strongly believe that it is obligatory to complete 100 hours of community service so that their children could be considered for admission to the best colleges and universities in the US. So, should high school students be encouraged to engage in community service? What are the most effective ways of motivating teenagers to volunteer for the right reasons?
Believe it or not, doing community service is not defined by boring stuff that students have to perform, since it should reflect their personalities. Thus, I doubt that anyone would consider themselves uninteresting or dull, right?
While considering an extracurricular profile of a student, colleges and universities take into account an impact that students have made on their communities. Therefore, it doesn’t matter whether you run track, tutor elementary school kids, or help at the local soup kitchen in order to make a good impression. Instead, admission officers pay attention on how long you have been committed to an activity, what you have accomplished, what kind of recognition you have received for your work, etc.
Considering the fact that high schools impose minimum hours of community service for graduation, the value of service itself diminishes. This way, high school students do not see the purpose of taking up any activity that is connected to community service, or even if they take up some, they do not consider them valuable and important in terms of expanding their life experiences. Besides, the competitive style of the admissions has made it hard to distinguish worthy students from the cheaters.
Colleges expect extracurricular profiles of students to be the reflections of their interests and personalities. Every applicant is unique and exceptional in their own way. Therefore, it is recommended to mention your main achievements, own goals, and personal involvement in performing community service, whenever you complete an extracurricular profile. Unfortunately, not all the articles that colleges and universities receive are genuine. Everyone understands that the soft factors can be the deciding ones, especially when the grades or the test scores are almost equal. For that reason, it is better to look at other chosen experiences of the students. Their passion will be definitely revealed through their words.
The best advice is to abandon the idea that performing community service is the most impactful activity in the process of college admissions. It is better to encourage teenagers to think about their interests and their skills. They should be motivated to pursue opportunities they will face. The activities they are doing have to be personally engaging, since their success hugely depends on students’ willingness to make difference to the world and the community.
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I'm absolutely certain that being honest and genuine is the best way to make your application look great in order to be enrolled to at least one of the top educational institutions of the country, where you will get a chance to explore and cultivate your personality. Consequently, reaching success will be an indispensable part of your life.