Skip to main content
Beedie School of Business
SFU Student

Picture of Raisa
What I want to leave you with is the thought that volunteering – though, I understand is unpaid and extra work on top of school– is not just a padding on your resume.

Having a Major Panic Attack?

Let me take you back to your first year in university, or if you’re in your first year, then remember trying to decide on your major. Did you immediately find out what you wanted to commit to after looking through SFU’s program list? Perhaps you were looking at various university programs, trying to decide which university to go to. If you easily picked out your major and instantly knew what you wanted to do, I applaud you. You’re one of the few. Most of us are still busy trying to figure out if we’re in the right major, even as late as our third years and fourth years. As a student who has experienced forked roads and indecision, I understand how difficult and overwhelming it could be to choose that one perfect career for you. Reality is you don’t pick one career; you take on various careers based on the opportunities you’ve been given. Now the question becomes, how do you open up those opportunities? Start by volunteering.

Keep Calm and Volunteer

Whether it’son campus or within your community, seeking out volunteer positions is a great way for you to figure out what industry, particular job, and specific skillyou want to learn, explore, and finally decide on. These opportunities open up doors by expanding your network, helping you gain relevant and transferable skills, and most importantly they act as a gateway to discovering yourself. For some people; it’s as clear as day, they don’t have to go through this. But, that is just some people. For most people – like you and me – we have to figure it out and try to find all the right pieces before finally putting them all together.

Feeling overwhelmed and don’t know where to start? Begin by finding an organization whose values you align with. If you align with an organization whose cause you believe in, it can push you to keep on going. This will see you through the tough times, particularly if you’re taking a full course load along with it. From then on, try to look for similar organizations with similar causes, or maybe even try one that’s completely different just for the heck of it! At this point in time, you may not know which organizations you want to work with. If so, pick one that piques your interest. What’s more important is that you immerse yourself in the experience and the role. This means you take the time to learn about the organization, your role in it, and what are the outcomes that the organization is trying to achieve. It also helps if you work with amazing people everyday – that could be one reason you pick a particular organization too!

Final Thoughts

What I want to leave you with is the thought that volunteering – though, I understand is unpaid and extra work on top of school– is not just a padding on your resume. More importantly, it is an experience. An experience that shows you what you can do and what you can be. It can help pave the path towards that “perfect career” that you were aiming for.

SFU Student
Raisa Crisologo is a business major, working towards completing three concentrations and a certificate. When she has free time, she loves to read, likes to listen to music, and attempts to write here and there. She’s a strong advocate of volunteering and highly recommends that one start as early as they can. An active and engaged student, she looks forward to the day that she can finally go out into the “real world” to contribute and help make it a better place. 
visibility  88
Oct 21, 2015

You Might Like These... Volunteering, Community Engagement, Professional Development, Personal Development, Life Balance

STC West Coast
Alumnus Profile: How Crystal Kwon Advanced Her Career Through Volunteerism

Students often overlook one important benefit of volunteerism. While students realize that scholarships and bursaries usually require community engagement, they often forget that volunteerism can also give you the edge you need after you finish your degree.

Kyle and volunteers
Kyle Jung: Expand Your Horizons through Volunteering

Did you know that you can make a difference through volunteering, as well as discovering your passions and career goals? These are just some of the benefits of volunteering, according to Kyle Jung, a 5th-year SIAT student who is also the Vice President of Operations, Interactive Arts & Technology Student Union (IATSU) and the SFSS Forum Representative.

Jordan Robinson: Volunteer, Learn & Have Fun!

Do you want to improve your writing and communications skills? Do you want to meet other SFU students? If you answered “yes” to any of the two questions, becoming a peer educator may just be right for you! Let Jordan Robinson, a 4th-year Sociology student, tell you what valuable skills and experiences.

You Might Like These... Life Experience

black and white photo of someone looking up to a light source
An Open Letter To My Chronic Pain

Diana Smith pens a series of poignant and moving letters addressed to her chronic pain. A must-read to better understand from a personal perspective what it is like to live with chronic pain.

David and his dad on the beach
Advice From My Dad - Make Yourself Irreplaceable | Part Two

"Make yourself irreplaceable," he would say, regaling stories of his own young employment at a car dealership. "Take the shifts that nobody else wants, work extra hours whenever possible, be the guy that your boss knows they can always count on." Was this really what my dad wanted me to do with my life?

IKEA logo
Goals: Not Ikea Instruction Manuals

Given my past rantings on such things as happenstance, chaos theory, and the general unpredictability of life and the world, I would forgive you if you thought that I would be opposed to any sort of goal-setting or similar such planful activities. I actually believe goals can be quite helpful - but only if we stop thinking of them as Ikea instruction manuals.