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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Volunteer fair to inform students of non-profit opportunities across state

With all the career fairs on the calendar for the semester, one fair works toward the Aggie value of selfless service by informing students of volunteer opportunities.
The Leadership and Service Center will host a number of organizations Wednesday for the Spring Volunteer Opportunities Fair.
The goal of the fair, held in the fall and spring semesters, is to provide students the opportunity to interact with local non-profit and for-profit agencies looking for volunteers.
Susan Miculka, administrative coordinator in the Leadership and Service Center, said 38 organizations are registered to participate Wednesday, including local groups such as Voices for Children, Elder Aid, the American Cancer Society and Scotty’s House.
“We have agencies representing elder care, nursing homes, so on and so forth,” Miculka said. “We have agencies that work with children, agencies that work with animals, outdoor opportunities, local government agencies, sometimes we have representatives from the Department of Parks and Recreation from College Station.”
There will also be agencies from outside College Station looking to recruit volunteers for summer opportunities in different parts of the state.
Kate Mason works as the recruitment and education coordinator at Voices for Children, a local court-appointed non-profit organization that helps find foster children permanent homes. She said the Volunteer Opportunities Fair isn’t just a good opportunity for students, but also for organizations like Voices for Children.
“It’s a great opportunity for us to get to meet students and let them know what we do in the community and how we do it and how they can help,” Mason said.
Melissa Shehane, assistant director of Student Services, said the event gives Aggies insight on how to serve the local community, and similar to a career fair, how to network with local service organizations.
“Many of these agencies, or organizations, are meeting social needs in the local community, and it allows students to have the opportunity to volunteer with those specific needs,” Shehane said. “At times some students find internship opportunities, but oftentimes that is after they volunteer. It kind of depends on how the student builds that relationships with that agency.”
Miculka said the Volunteer Opportunities Fair has grown over the past few semesters.
“It’s hard to determine how many students we actually reach, but in the fall we had over 300 students come by and visit the agencies in the time that we were there,” Miculka said. “We would like to reach lots more students.”
Miculka said anyone can find a volunteer opportunity that’s a right fit for them and meets the needs of the community as well.
“We hope that we’ll have a great turnout of students, we’re really excited about the number of agencies participating, and I really think that there is something for everybody who wants to volunteer,” Miculka said.
The fair will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in MSC 2406.

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