Volunteer Services, one of the three (3) components of “Partners for Success,” was designed and implemented last spring. Already operating for a number of years, two (2) other components of “Partners for Success,” Academic Assistance and Retention Services, were moved under the leadership and management of “Partners for Success” at the beginning of summer semester 2010.
The purpose of Volunteers Services for New River Community College is to develop and implement a program using volunteers that will help students be more successful in their academic pursuits while creating excitement and relevance for their learning. The program was developed to support the goals of the college, especially Goal #2: student access and opportunity, and the “student success” goal for the Virginia’s Community College System’s Achieve 2015, the six year strategic plan.
Volunteer Services was tasked with developing the concept of “Partners for Success” into a successful volunteer program for New River Community College by completing the following goals:
- To clarify the vision of the President for the program;
- To determine the student assistance programs that are extant, and working to strengthen the internal collaboration between those programs and Volunteer Services;
- To develop an advisory team to assist in the development and implementation of the program;
- To clarify further the need for the program by gaining knowledge and access to the faculty’s, staff’s, and students’ perception of the needs for the program;
- To gain knowledge of academic and non-academic programs and services so as to determine ways to provide services to students through volunteer efforts;
- To develop a “talent bank” of potential community volunteers who can offer assistance for students’ needs;
- To screen volunteers and partners;
- To match volunteers and partners;
- To provide technical assistance and support to volunteers;
- To collaboratively develop social support programs to meet the needs of students;
- To develop a marketing plan for the program to ensure that students, staff, and faculty have complete knowledge of its purposes and services;
- To develop ways and means to identify students’ needs;
- To develop partnership opportunities with individuals and organizations in order to provide services to our students;
- To develop programs and/or contacts that can help students manage their external needs (i.e., childcare, transportation, family, and other);
- To research the legal aspects of volunteer programs;
- To develop and implement training programs for volunteers;
- To develop and implement a recognition program for volunteers;
- To develop a volunteer handbook for “Partners for Success;” and
- To develop and implement an evaluation of the program and the volunteers.