Is Joining Americorps Worth It – * This post may contain affiliate links, which means I will not pay you anything if you make a purchase through the link.
Community service, travel, work for a mission instead of money – AmeriCorps sounds good on paper! But think you’re reading this:
Is Joining Americorps Worth It
, low wages and all? This AmeriCorps review will help you decide if AmeriCorps is right for you.
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Committing to a term of service is a big decision. Even if you’re 100% sure AmeriCorps is for you, you’ll still have a better experience if you have the right expectations.
This AmeriCorps review reflects my years of service. I will share my honest opinion about AmeriCorps and my biggest piece of advice to anyone considering joining AmeriCorps.
A year in AmeriCorps is dedicated to “improving lives and promoting civic engagement,” according to the organization’s mission statement.
Not all AmeriCorps positions are created equal. Some AmeriCorps members travel across the country or region in groups.
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Other service members are stationed and do most of their work in an office.
Some work mainly in the fields and in the primary aid schools for children, and in the house yards.
You can find specific details about this program online. During my career, I participated in the state AmeriCorps program and it fell under the Washington Service Corps.
For me, and I think for many service members who have completed the program, AmeriCorps has been a very unique, sometimes challenging, and fast and dirty year that is unlike any experience that college or global business can provide. bring
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The truth is, no one can tell you, “Is AmeriCorps worth it?” cannot answer the question. Because no one can say exactly what your experience will be like.
But examining what motivated you to consider joining AmeriCorps can help you see if your expectations are realistic.
I don’t know what brought you to read this AmeriCorps magazine, and maybe you don’t. There is something about the AmeriCorps program that excites you, but you can’t quite articulate it yet.
Let me tell you my personal motivations for participating in this program and see if it applies to you.
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When I was 21, the prospect of sitting behind a desk tied to my email inbox was overwhelming.
I wanted to find satisfaction in my career and not start a four-year grind. Helping people and enjoying new experiences is even more exciting
Ironically, after my AmeriCorps tenure, I transitioned into a corporate environment, but experience proved that it wasn’t for me, so I became a tech nomad. digital.
Spoiler: AmeriCorps wasn’t really the experience I wanted, but it helped me develop skills that ultimately helped me become a digital nomad. I wouldn’t change anything. Brussels, Belgium 2020
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Beyond all the philanthropy and the intrinsic reward of public service, I’m always interested in how AmeriCorps helps people compete in the job market.
Before signing the contract, I realized that I could only do one year of service if I was convinced that I would have a good job after my work or be accepted in a master’s program.
After researching, I found that the program is highly regarded and many universities even encourage AmeriCorps alumni to participate in their programs.
I used AmeriCorps as an excuse to move from Pennsylvania to Washington State. This is an invitation to my farewell party.
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You can serve anywhere in the country with AmeriCorps, so you don’t have to serve where you live. I grew up and went to college in Pennsylvania, but I seriously considered places in Washington State, Tennessee, and North Carolina before moving from PA to Seattle before choosing WA.
Montana on the left, Washington State on the right. My year with AmeriCorps taught me more about America than I could have imagined in one year. If you have always wanted to travel more, choose a place on the other side of the country. What’s stopping you?
I am 22 years old and have never been to the Pacific Northwest or the country. But I gave in, packed up my Ford Focus and hit the road with my best friends.
The night before I left, my parents had a big party with a beautiful cake that said, “Kaila’s Good Luck in Seattle.” I was so excited. But I still cry like a baby, pulling the packed car out of my parents’ driveway.
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Adventure called and one of my best friends answered with me. Katie and I drove 2,600 miles. .
What you need to understand about AmeriCorps before you get to #1: Not all national service programs require a degree, and you can join AmeriCorps right out of high school.
It is very common for college students to graduate with valuable degrees and have no idea what they want in life.
Every year in high schools, military recruiters talk to students across the country to recruit them into the armed forces before entering college.
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I didn’t hear about AmeriCorps until I finished my bachelor’s degree, but I would have greatly benefited from the service experience before entering college.
You can choose anywhere in the country – where do you want to live and explore? If the urban jungle is calling you, don’t choose a place in the middle of Montana. If you like the sun and the beach, don’t apply to a position in Washington State (take it from me).
Honestly, finding the answer to that question is beyond the scope of this AmeriCorps review: it’s just a very important goal to tackle in the years after graduation.
Even if you love where you live but have been thinking about the other side of the country, go! You can come back. You don’t have to buy a ticket alone. And only one year left, the greatest (
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My first big move in my life was going to Seattle to take a position with AmeriCorps. Taking that leap gave me the confidence to continue making big leaps – moving to Chicago (pictured left) and the Netherlands (right).
The experience of moving to a new place and making a life for yourself can be very rewarding and does a lot of character building.
This fact will not change your experience, but it is an important contract and you do not want to be surprised after signing it.
) this fact during the interview and research. When I found out that I had been chosen as a volunteer, I was very sad at first. I feel like that year has lost value or place on my resume.
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This concern is not true. People know and respect the AmeriCorps program. Having it on your resume gives a positive message to potential employers.
Instead of receiving a regular payment with AmeriCorps, you receive a regular “living allowance,” which is a small payment you receive twice a month.
At the end of your term, you will often receive other bonuses, such as educational bonuses.
Left: My small room, no bigger than an open mattress (this was my bed for a year). You are not jealous of AmeriCorps benefits. Right: From the lake I can go through this apartment. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Seattle 2015
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But your weekly income? This is very sketchy. This is probably the biggest drawback of the service of the year. If you live in a city, that means happy hour, lunch, and Ubering from A to B doesn’t happen very often.
AmeriCorps is a temporary position. In some ways, that made the experience even more enjoyable: I went into the assignment thinking that, even if I hated it, I could still handle everything in 11 months.
This is inevitable and just something to be aware of when entering service life. My term is from September to July (11.5 months) and I started looking for a job in April.
Managing a budget and learning to enjoy the good and free things in life are wonderful and valuable life skills to cultivate. A term of service with AmeriCorps is an inflation-adjusted lifestyle that will serve you for years to come and help you live the life you want.
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Not being able to pay for things like happy hour and late night drinks means you have to learn how to socialize without alcohol (which can be fun and surprising).
When I moved into the post-AmeriCorps corporate world, I was disappointed that people rarely socialized outside of bars.
What happened to the old game night? A potluck party? Spending the afternoon with friends in the park? These are important foundations of AmeriCorps social life.
Living on poverty benefits directly prepared me to quit my salaried job after two years and become a digital nomad. But it is more than that