A Lifetime of Service
You never really say goodbye to your service term
Individuals who have served in Peace Corps and other volunteer corps, for example, often describe their time of service as life changing. Their experiences may be similar to what you'll feel. If so, it is possible that your future choices about career, family, community, and civic responsibilities may be profoundly influenced by your AmeriCorps or VISTA experience.
If you are considering another year of service, see the Continue to Serve section of this tutorial.
Keeping in touch with the "AmeriCorps" family
These days, the term networking seems to be everywhere and you've learned about using it in your job search. As you approach the end of your service, there will be people you want to remember-whether or not they'll be part of your future work or educational strategy. You'll be surprised at how quickly you can forget names, telephone numbers, etc., unless you have this information written down. Take some time to list information about each person you want to remember from your AmeriCorps or VISTA assignment including their:
Volunteering throughout your life
Service has been the defining feature of your experience as an AmeriCorps or VISTA member. When you took the AmeriCorps pledge, you made a commitment to serve not only during your AmeriCorps term, but also beyond. For AmeriCorps "graduates," serving is an ongoing commitment and responsibility.
At some time in your life you will probably step out of service altogether, pulling away for a while to revitalize or perhaps rethink your commitments. The key is not to stay away too long. Because of your AmeriCorps or VISTA service, the ethic of service will probably permeate your life. Ideally, you will never be far from it.
Also consider a very practical part of continuing to serve as you leave AmeriCorps:
- Help AmeriCorps recruit dynamic, committed new members.
- Talk about your service.
- Encourage others to consider AmeriCorps service in their lives.
- Refer them to the AmeriCorps recruitment hotline at 1-800-942-2677
To find out how you can help recruit AmeriCorps members, call the AmeriCorps recruitment office at 202-606-5000, extension 566.
If you and your fellow AmeriCorps members are looking for another full-time service opportunity, you may want to consider applying your skills overseas as a Peace Corps volunteer. Call 1-800-254-8540 for information.
Your service commitment is ongoing. Go forth and continue to do good work!