The Morgridge Center for Public Service’s Peer Advisors work to increase student involvement in the community. Peer Advisors match students with volunteer opportunities based on their interests and schedules.
Students can or drop in during advising hours. During a meeting, students will sit down with Peer Advisors Jaya Monte or Danielle Wendricks who will take them through a list of current community engagement opportunities. When students share their interests with our peer advisors, they can help find the perfect volunteer opportunity.
“Many students are unsure about what is available in the Madison community and how they can help,” Monte said. “We can narrow down the search and find a spot that the student will love. When a student enjoys what they’re doing, they’re more likely to stick with it and we’re looking to make that type of connection.”
Not only can students share their interests during advising meetings — they can share any concerns or questions they may have about volunteering. Each appointment lasts 10 to 20 minutes, and students can expect Monte and Wendricks to have a few ideas already in mind.
Peer advisors also provide students with resources on responsible civic engagement, how to contact nonprofits in a professional way and what to expect during their service experience.
“Sometimes it can be overwhelming on such a big campus to find a site that’s a good fit, but a peer advisor can take that stress away. We can help in any way students need us to,” Monte said.
While a lot of students are overwhelmed by the process at first, peer advisors provide the tools needed to narrow down the search. As a result, the resources peer advisors provide to students increase the number of volunteers out in the community.
“We have a lot of fun searching for volunteer opportunities and are really excited when appointments come in,” Monte said. “It is great to be able to help people find places to volunteer and see their excitement about what they will be doing.”