Community engagement does not need to be healthcare related. Follow your interests and demonstrate that you care about others.
Service Learning does not need to be healthcare related. Volunteer with people and directly serve Boston’s diverse population and their communities. Visit Northeastern’s City and Community Engagement program to learn about opportunities or check out one of the many sites below for opportunities in and around the Boston area. If you’re not sure where to start, please consider viewing this workshop featuring Northeastern alumni that integrated service into their PreHealth careers.
Virtual Volunteer Opportunities
- Mentor with CovEducation
- CovEd is a platform that connects K-12 students seeking tutoring with volunteer college students offering to mentor students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Mentors are responsible for volunteering a minimum of one to two hours a week of their time to help their matched mentee with the subjects the mentee requests help in. While a mentor is only matched with one mentee, they can reach out if they would like to mentor more.
- Become a Counselor with Crisis Text Line
- Crisis Text Line is the free, 24/7 text line for people in crisis in the United States. The service is powered by volunteer Crisis Counselors who work remotely—anywhere with a computer and secure internet connection works. Crisis Counselors answer texts from people in crisis, bringing them from a hot moment to a cool calm through active listening, collaborative problem solving, and safety planning.
- When you think about volunteers, the typical image of a team or community group planting a garden, revitalizing a local park or painting a lively mural at a school comes to mind. Yet all around the globe, at any given time, thousands (if not millions) of engaged citizens volunteer virtually — using their computers, the Internet, even their smart phones. Virtual volunteers can complete short-term or long-term tasks, in whole or in part, typically off-site from the organization or person being assisted. If you’ve got access to a computer, thousands of different volunteer projects and roles are available to you — from your home, the library, a coffee shop, anywhere with an Internet connection.
- Operation Warm
- Nonprofit organizations often work with a small staff and tiny budgets. It makes a big difference to these charities when volunteers step in to help. Browse our list of 25 volunteer jobs to do from home. You may just find a fun volunteer project and find an easy way to help a good cause.
- Paper Airplanes Virtual Tutoring
- Paper Airplanes provides free, one-on-one virtual language and skills instruction to people affected by conflict. Our goal is to help our students learn critical languages and marketable skills for their pursuit of higher education and employment. We currently have five programs: English, Turkish, Youth Exchange, Women in Tech (computer coding), and Journalism. The time commitment is approximately 2 hours per week, which includes prep time. You will meet with your student once per week for a 1.5 hour session via Skype. We provide the curriculum, but you will need to do some basic lesson planning to match the curriculum to your student’s needs.
- Find Online Tutoring Opportunities through Summer Camp Hub
While it might not be possible to do certain in-person volunteering activities during this period, there are several other ways you can help. Online tutoring volunteer opportunities consist of helping children improve their literacy skills, teaching them how to code or help them better understand math and science. There is a wide variety of virtual tutoring options available to those who want to dedicate their time to helping students, especially those in low-income underserved communities. Whether you’re a high school student, college student, professor, or industry professional, here are some places you can volunteer.
Clinical Volunteer Opportunities
- AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts
- American Cancer Society Hope Lodge
- Beth Israel Deaconess Volunteer Services
- Boston Children’s Hospital
- Boston Living Center (supporting HIV positive individuals)
- Boston Medical Center Volunteer Services
- Brigham and Women’s Hospital Volunteer and Community Services
- Cape Cod Hospital (Hyannis)
- Christopher’s Haven(a home for kids when cancer hits home)
- City Natives (community garden and learning center – help combat food insecurity in the city)
- Faulkner Hospital
- Dana Farber Cancer Center
- Family Van
- Fenway Health Center Helpline/Peer Listening Line (serving the LGBTQ community)
- Franciscan Children’s Hospital
- Franklin Park Zoo
- Healthcare for the Homeless
- Hope Lodge
- Horizon’s for Homeless Children Playspace Volunteer
- Hospice of Massachusetts
- Make A Wish Foundation
- Massachusetts General Hospital Volunteer Department
- Massachusetts Eye and Ear Clinical Exploratory Program
- Mount Auburn Hospital (Cambridge)
- MSPCA (Animal Hospital/Shelter)
- New England Aquarium
- New England Baptist Hospital Volunteering
- New England Center for Homeless Vets
- Oxfam America Interns and Volunteer
- Ronald McDonald House
- Rosie’s Place
- Samaritan’s: You are not Alone
- Spaulding Rehab Hospital Adaptive Sports Program
- Tufts Medical Center
- Yawkey Family Inn at Boston Children’s Hospital (a home away from home for families of children undergoing treatment at Boston Children’s Hospital)
College is a time to explore new interests, make friends, establish relationships, and take on new roles. It is important to make time for some extra-curricular activities, in addition to studying. Find one or two activities that you genuinely enjoy and make them a part of your life. Play a sport, run for office in student government, join a fraternity or sorority, be a part of a club or organization. Seek out leadership positions. Join a club related to your major and/or future health career.
Visit The Center for Student Involvement to view a list of Northeastern’s many clubs and organizations.
Explore opportunities to gain experience in other countries and/or with other cultures and better prepare yourself to professionally practice in an increasingly global society. Global experiences also offer an opportunity to learn (or practice) a second language.
International experiences need not be medically-related. Students who plan a global medical trip should review AAMC Guidelines Pertaining to International Clinical Experiences and/or the American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Guidelines for Predental Students Providing Patient Care During Clinical Experiences Abroad. We expect that all PreHealth students will become familiar and comply with these guidelines. Students are also encouraged to attend the Global Ambassadors for Patient Safety free online workshop before participating in a health related experience abroad.
- The primary purpose of a student clinical experience is observation, not hands-on treatment. You are there to learn about culture, language, and different health care systems!
- Under no circumstances should you perform procedures you are not qualified to do under US law.
- Admissions Committees question the ethical judgement of applicants who do not follow these guidelines. This can jeopardize your acceptance.
Resources (Articles & Videos)
- Beyond Medical “Missions” to Impact-Driven Short-Term Experiences in Global Health (STEGHs): Ethical Principles to Optimize Community Benefit and Learner Experience
- The Stream – Medical volunteerism
- To Get to Harvard, Go to Haiti?