Student Leaders

FAQ

Have questions about the Terps for Change program? Check out the categories below to see if your question is answered. For additional questions, contact us

I just submitted an application to be a Terps for Change volunteer. What happens now? 

We've put together a document with specific dates and information outlining what you need to do after you have submitted your volunteer application. You can access that document here

How are volunteer placements decided? 

Preference is given to returning volunteers on a first come, first serve basis. For new applicants, placements are made based on the needs of our Community Partners. However, if you submit by the priority deadline, you will get a better chance of being placed at your preferred site. We ask that applicants be flexible in their preferences, as their first choice will not always be available. Note: When ranking their preferences, volunteers should be conscious of their availability, including travel time and potential conflicting commitments. Applicants are encouraged to communicate those potential conflicts with the interviewers in their interview. 

Will I get class credit?

Currently, Terps for Change and the Leadership Community and Service Learning Office does not offer participants or coordinators class credit. 

What is the time commitment? Least-Most hours possible?

The time commitment for a Terps for Change participant is 3-4 hours a week, which includes the one hour-long service dialogue, 2-3 hours of on-site volunteering, and any other commitments at the discretion of coordinators (ex: site orientation, one on one meetings, community bonding events etc.)

What is a dialogue? 

A dialogue is an hour-long conversation between you and your fellow participants about the service you perform each week, led by a team of coordinators. Dialogues are a reflective and educational experience which gives you the opportunity to engage more deeply with the work you do on site. Dialogue teams include volunteers from a number of different sites, so you will connect with people doing several different kinds of work. Some topics covered in these discussions include professional development, time management, and different social issues such as environmental conservation, socioeconomic status, race, gender, and inclusion. 

Where will dialogues take place? 

Dialogues will take place in the Adele H. Stamp Student Union Building. Before your first dialogue, your coordinators will let you know which room in Stamp your specific dialogue will be taking place in. 

Does Terps for Change have individual volunteer days?

Each volunteer will go to their volunteering site on the same day of the week for eight weeks. You will be assigned to a site based on the preference rankings you submit along with your application, and each site has specific times and dates that your site group will visit on. Please see our website (LSCL Terps for Change: About Our Community Partners) for more information on when these dates/times are.

How do I get to site?

The LCSL Office provides vans for Terps for Change (and other programs like Alternative Breaks and Maryland Mentor Corps) to use in order to transport participants to site. Your coordinators have been trained on how to use vans, and even participants themselves are able to drive vans to site with the proper training. You are also welcome to provide your own transportation to the site location. 

Do I need to go to my site every week? 

Because Terps for Change is an 8-week program (per semester), missing more than one to two site visits would cause you to miss a significant portion of the program, and for this reason we ask that you try your best to make it to every site visit possible. However, we understand that certain circumstances are unavoidable, in which case you may miss up to two (2) site visits, and you must inform your coordinator well in advance. This policy applies to dialogues as well. 

Do I need to participate for the full length of the indicated site time (ex: from 9am to 12pm on Saturdays), or can I come for part of the time? 

Yes, you will be required to volunteer for the entire length of time as indicated on the application when you filled out your availability. If you are unable to commit to this time anymore, please contact the Terps for Change Staff (terpsforchange@umd.edu) so that we can place you into a site that works better for your schedule. 

Will my Site Coordinators be the same as my Dialogue Coordinators? 

Your Site Coordinators will most likely be different from your Dialogue Coordinators. While the group of participants that you volunteer with will all be from the same site, the group that you participate in dialogue with will have volunteers from several different sites. Therefore, your dialogue will also be led by a team of coordinators from different sites. 

 

Can I apply to be a coordinator if I haven’t been a participant?

Yes, you may apply to be a coordinator even if you have not previously been a participant. We welcome fresh perspectives for dialogues etc. from those who are new to the program!

What is the time commitment for being a coordinator? 

Coordinators are expected to dedicate about 10 hours a week to their work for Terps for Change. This includes site visits, dialogues, planning time with co-coordinators and community partners, individual and team meetings with staff, and Monday Night Meetings (Mondays 4-5:30pm). Monday Night Meetings and semesterly student leader retreats (one day at the beginning of each semester) are mandatory for all coordinators. 

Do coordinators get paid?

The LCSL Office and STAMP currently do not provide coordinators monetary compensation for their role in the program. However, as an intern with Terps for Change, you would receive a semesterly stipend for your work. We recognize that having the time to dedicate to an unpaid position like this may be a barrier for some students, which is why the Terps for Change Leadership Scholarship is available. If you are interested in being a coordinator and you think this scholarship may make the position more accessible to you, email terpsforchange@umd.edu to inquire about the application process.

What else can I do with Leadership and Community Service-Learning?

The Leadership and Community Service-Learning office offers a number of other great opportunities. For more information about getting involved, check out the LCSL website!

 

How long can dialogues be?

Dialogues can range from being about an hour to an hour and a half. Most organizations opt for in between at about an hour and fifteen minutes! This will really depend on the needs of your organization like considering how large the group is.

 

How involved can we (the organization) be with the planning of a dialogue?

Organizations have the ability to be as involved as they would like! This means the organization has the option to be involved in the creation of the activity plan used during the dialogue or even help facilitate the conversation with our own coordinators. Leaders of the organization can also be hands off in the entire process if they would simply like to participate in the dialogue.

 

What are the obligations my organization will have if we agree to host a Pop-Up?

Once organizations have agreed to host a Pop-Up, there are a few things they must do to help our coordinators in the planning of the upcoming dialogue. First, coordinators will request an initial consultation meeting to get a better understanding of the organization’s expectations. Once communication has been established, the organization will be responsible for providing a location for the dialogue if it is to be done in person. Lastly, organizations will be responsible for the marketing for the event and keeping attendance during the dialogue.

 

How large can my organization be to have a Pop-Up?

This can be best answered during a consultation meeting with a staff member or intern so there can be a discussion at length about the needs of your organization and what we can provide for you. Typically though, we do have a cap of about 40 participants.

 

What COVID-19 Protocols do I need to follow to volunteer with Terps for Change?

All Terps for Change participants must be in compliance with the University's current COVID-19 requirements, which can be found here. Some of our volunteer sites require participants to comply with additional precautions, such as presenting proof of vaccination at the time of volunteering. You can find all of the requirements for participation with each site on our About Our Community Partners page. Please read all site details carefully before listing your preferences on the volunteer application.

 

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