Christopher Newport places a huge emphasis on service and community engagement. The university is very committed to engaging with the Newport News community.
In programs such as PLP and the Bonner Scholars, community engagement through volunteering is required. Outside of these programs, CNU has many more service organizations that highly encourage volunteering, such as Green Team and SPCA. For a freshman or transfer student, this can be overwhelming. “Why do so many volunteer?” “Where are they volunteering?” “How do they find the time?” These are all questions that are relatively common.
CNU students volunteer because we care about our community, both in and outside of CNU. To name just a few, we are volunteering all over Newport News, at food banks, museums, elementary schools and youth centers. In addition, students also spend a lot of time volunteering on campus. Typically, this involves tabling in the DSU, but there are plenty of other ways to volunteer on campus too. CNU’s weekly emails offer tons of opportunities. The biggest question is “How do they find the time?”
Time is where a lot of the worry stems from. Well, it’s a lot easier than you’d think to get hours done. The amount of time spent in class in college is typically a lot shorter than the time spent in class in high school. With the extra free time, you are able to explore the community around you. And if you so choose, volunteer in it. The biggest hurdle is actually getting out there and doing it.
A common mistake is waiting until the last minute. Don’t wait. Commit to 1-3 hours of volunteering a week, a small percentage of the 168 hours that are in a week, and you’ll be done with plenty of time to spare. Continue on that path and you’ll also be on your way to possibly graduating with a service distinction!