Your service should be completed with a nonprofit, educational, social services, or governmental organization during the course of the semester. The SL Office has partners across the state of New Jersey, but if we do not have a site in your region of interest, we will work to find you an appropriate site in that area. You may also suggest specific organizations with whom you are already affiliated.
- Please refer to the "Communicating with Your Site" section of our Student Handbook (you can download it here or request a print copy from the SL Office).
- It is always polite to introduce yourself, reference you are a Service-Learning Student from Stockton and that you are interested in volunteering with their organization.
- Using the correct language and verbiage is important. You should refrain from the following statement: "Ummm, Hi...I'm Mary...and I have to do community service...". This statement it not only inaccurate, but it sounds creepy. Instead try: "Hello, I'm Mary, from Stockton. I have a service-learning class project this semester, and I am interested in volunteering with your organization..."
- Remember that your site supervisor is probably very busy – it may take a little time for him/her to get back to you. If you are unable to get in touch with the supervisor the first time you call, leave a message and allow 2-3 full days for him/her to return the call. If you get no response, call again. Keep track of the dates and times you have made phone calls to the site. If you have not heard from your supervisor within one week of making the first call, please contact the Office of Service-Learning and we will do everything we can to help you.
- Best Practice says to email and call your community partner at the same time. Everyone has a different communication style and preference - some community partners sole means of communication is phone, others email.
- It is generally considered unprofessional to text your community partner unless they have specifically told you to do so.
- The LIABILITY WAIVER IS REQUIRED of all students participating in school-related off-campus work. It ensures that Stockton is not held responsible for you if anything should happen to you during the course of your service. More importantly, it releases our community partners from any liability for you. Because our partners are primarily nonprofits and educational institutions, it is important that we grant them this courtesy.
- Students who conduct their service projects on-campus are also expected to complete the waiver. The waiver covers more than just physical and transportation risks. Sometimes service work can elicit mental, emotional and/or spiritual triggers. It's important to understand all the risks before beginning a project.
We understand that not all of our SL students have transportation, and for those folks, we reserve a very limited number of sites that are either on-campus or very close to campus. However, we encourage students without transportation to work in a pair or small group with other students who may be able to share the responsibility for transportation.