SMC FACULTY: You are welcome
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Service-Learning: How to get started
that first phone call—a suggested “script”
Hi. May I
speak with ______________________?
What is this regarding?
I’m a student at Santa
Monica College and I am interested in volunteering at your organization.
Hello. This is so and so.
Hi. My name is
__________________ and I’m a student at Santa Monica College. I’m enrolled in a Sociology class called
“Social Problems” and part of the class involves me volunteering with a
My instructor selected your agency because he
believes it is appropriate for our class.
I am interested in your organization and would like
to meet with you about conducting my service hours with your agency.
Would it be possible to
meet with you this week to discuss this?
- Make time to meet. Agencies are generally available to
meet M-F 9-4.
- Don’t miss a scheduled appointment.
- Ask for directions. (No, you won’t sound dumb. It would be dumb if you got lost and
hadn’t asked for directions.)
- Bring the name of the person you’re
going to meet (so you can ask for them when you arrive) and the phone
number of the agency (in case you get lost).
- Don’t expect busy people to go out of
their way to wait on you or make you feel at home and cozy. If you think you are busy, try running
a non-profit community agency.
- Be patient and polite. Think of the site contact person as
both an expert in their particular field and as your 2nd
instructor for this class. Treat
them as you treat your instructor.
- At your first meeting, be sure to give the site supervisor the letter for them from your
instructor. Be sure the agency
understands that you are there to LEARN from your service experience, NOT
merely to do “volunteer community service”.
- At your first meeting, get a sense of the organization.
Is the service they provide a valuable one? If you don’t think so, FIND ANOTHER
SITE. Try to get a sense of what
YOU will be doing. If it sounds
boring, tell them so and work it out.
If it still sounds boring, FIND ANOTHER SITE.
- Remember: You are required to complete 20 hours of service on a weekly
basis. This means that you cannot
cram 20 hours of service into the last weekend of the semester. It also means that you don’t have to
stop when you’ve reached 20 hours.
Many students continue even after the semester has ended. Keep an open-mind.
- FINALLY: After your first meeting,
write down your thoughts, feelings, expectations, and concerns. This will be valuable as the course