How have Service Corps members benefited our community partner organizations?

The CUNY Service Corps seeks community partners to offer hands-on projects and meaningful supervision for Corps members.

The 2017-2018 Partner Application is now open through Friday, March 24th 2017. Visit the Contact Information section below to find a link to the application.

Program Goals

The CUNY Service Corps is more than an internship program: students are building professional skills while also engaged in work that addresses the city’s most pressing needs.
The CUNY Service Corps has a focused set of goals for Corps members, the University, and the program’s community partners:

Goals for Corps Members
Civic responsibility
Students will identify as stewards of CUNY and their communities and practice service as a component of active citizenship, community engagement, and social responsibility.

Educational & career success
Students will demonstrate awareness of the connection between their academic learning at CUNY and real‐life experiences and gain workplace skills that will improve their employment prospects after graduation.

Goals for CUNY
Instruction
CUNY will integrate more experiential learning into the student experience.

Community engagement
Faculty/staff will utilize their deep expertise to address New York City’s most pressing needs, enabling CUNY — its faculty, staff, and students — to contribute to the public good.

Goals for Community Partners
CUNY students will increase the capacity of Service Corps community partners to serve their communities’ needs.

Role of Community Partners

Community partners of the CUNY Service Corps:

  • Identify a pressing need in a local community
  • Work with Service Corps staff to design student projects
  • Host, train, and supervise a cohort of CUNY Service Corps members
  • Evaluate Corps members and communicate regularly with Service Corps staff

Past Projects

  • Providing administrative support to hospital Vice Presidents
  • Helping senior citizens use technology effectively
  • Designing promotional flyers to attract youth to a job training program
  • Teaching children about animals at a zoo
  • Promoting financial literacy among adults
  • Researching energy efficiency

About CUNY Service Corps Members

Students selected for the highly competitive CUNY Service Corps have demonstrated that they:

  • Are enrolled full-time at a participating CUNY college, have maintained at least a cumulative G.P.A. of 2.5, and have earned at least 24 college credits
  • Want to be part of a special and important program that will make a difference in the lives of New Yorkers
  • Are interested in and dedicated to helping people, neighborhoods, and/or organizations
  • Can balance work in the CUNY Service Corps with college studies and other co-curricular commitments
  • Show promise as a leader and a problem-solver
  • Are able to work as a member of a team

Before placements begin, CUNY Service Corps members attend 13 hours of professional development training.

What Partners Say About the CUNY Service Corps

Service Corps members have added value to a myriad of activities at CEO while practicing service and building skills through support of multiple departments, including Human Resources and Operations.

The Corps members have shown excellent interpersonal and organizational skills while remaining enthusiastic and flexible.  The CUNY Service Corps experience has been invaluable.

Tara M. Hall, Manager of Staff Training, Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO)

The students we were assigned are intelligent, responsible, thoughtful, and diligent, allowing us—a small non-profit—to increase our capacity and be a more effective organization. Additionally, the administrators of the program have made participation easy, with friendly check-ins, reasonable reporting requirements, and excellent support.”

Arif Ullah, Director of Programs, Citizens Committee for New York City

My colleagues are so pleased with the partnership between CUNY Service Corps and the Visiting Nurse Service of New York. There seems to be a kind of Service Corps persona – someone who holds a mission driven approach close to their heart, who offers their service and who wants to work alongside our staff to promote the health and well-being of patients and families in the home and community.” 

Michael Ambrosini, Director, Volunteer Services & Community Relations, Visiting Nurse Service of New York.

How many hours do students work? When do they start?

Corps members work approximately 12 hours per week for 24 weeks over two academic semesters. Placements begin in mid to late September.

FAQ About the CUNY Service Corps

What types of organizations may apply?
The program is open to non-profit organizations and government agencies that have offices in New York City’s five boroughs.

How many Corps members can each partner request?
Prospective partners may request a minimum of 5 and no more than 25 students per organization.

How many hours do students work? When do they start?
Corps members work approximately 12 hours per week for 24 weeks over two academic semesters. Placements begin mid-late September.

When do placements end?
After the program begins in September, Corps members and their placement supervisors are given some flexibility to design the 24-week program calendar. For example, some Corps members work during winter break while others do not.  Most students will end placements in April.

Are students paid?
Students are paid $13 per hour.

Are there any costs to partners?
For the 2016-2017 year, CUNY can cover student wages. Some current partners are paying students wages in full.  As the program grows, the Service Corps welcomes discussions with current and prospective partners about cost-sharing.  All partners must cover the costs of any supplemental background check procedures (e.g., finger prints).

What are the meeting and reporting requirements for supervisors?
Supervisors are asked to:

  • Attend a CUNY Service Corps Partner Orientation before the program begins (online or in person)
  • Approve the students’ Learning Action Plans (e.g. list of goals) online in the Fall
  • Complete two evaluations of Corps members’ performance and discuss with students
  • Complete surveys at the  end of the program
  • Participate in a site visit for CUNY Service Corps staff members
  • Verify student time sheets biweekly online
  • Provide training and support to students. Meet with students at least biweekly.

What are the supervision requirements?
Partners are asked to identify dedicated staff members who will provide adequate supervision, including:

  • Placement-specific training
  • Review and monitoring of students’ learning goals
  • Provision of clear expectations and directions and frequent feedback to Corps members
  • Formal assessment of Corps members
  • Timely completion and submission of electronic time sheets for Corps members
  • Regular check-ins and meetings with Corps members (at least biweekly)

Are partners allowed to interview students before they are placed?
The CUNY Service Corps program matches trained students to community partners.  Partners will have the opportunity to meet students before placements begin and express preferences to CUNY Service Corps staff regarding potential matches.  Typically 80-90% of initial placements are a “mutual match.”  However, the CUNY Service Corps cannot guarantee that partners will receive the all of the students they request.

What type of support do supervisors receive from CUNY?
CUNY Service Corps provides the following to partners:

  • An initial visit to the placement site to discuss the application
  • A program orientation and supervisor training sessions
  • Periodic on-site meetings with Service Corps members and their supervisors
  • A highly responsive program staff to address partner organization concerns

What types of projects are most successful?
The ideal placement for CUNY Service Corps members offers:

  • A variety of challenging tasks and projects. Corps members ideally complete more than one type of task to maximize learning opportunities.  For example, Corps members may be tutoring young people as a primary role while also creating outreach plans.
  • Additional projects to be completed during down time. Corps members are talented students who may complete tasks more quickly than expected.  Supervisors should offer additional projects students can work on if they finish work early.
  • Additional learning opportunities. Partners are encouraged to offer other chances for students to learn about the field, role, and service theme.  This might include informational interviews with other staff members and opportunities to attend existing professional development trainings and meetings.
  • A variety of program times.  Placements that have very specific time frames (e.g., 3pm-6pm, four days a week) have difficulty attracting students that can accommodate these hours given class schedules.  Ideally an after-school program would allow students to arrive at 1pm to complete planning tasks before tutoring begins at 3pm.

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Contact Information and Application Instructions

The 2017-2018 Community Partner Application is now open to non-profit and government agencies.  The deadline to apply is Friday March 24, 2017.

Applying is a two-step process.

1) Register as an employer here:
https://servicecorps-csm.symplicity.com/employers/

2) Once your registration is approved, you will receive instructions on how to complete the application process by entering service placement descriptions.

Questions? Contact Allie Griffin at allison.griffin@cuny.edu or call 646-664-8063.