Each year, a significant number of St. Olaf graduates choose to embark upon a full-time service opportunities. These programs provide opportunities to gain experience, explore career interests, develop leadership skills, travel and help strengthen communities as part of a one or two year commitment. Positions can be found in a number of areas such as human service, education, environmental sustainability, public health and community development. Visit our general information page to find more about gap year/post-graduate service. The Piper Center (Tomson 270) is always eager to assist you in the process of learning about, selecting and applying to post-graduate service programs.
Worldwide Service Fair – Meet with representatives from approximately 20 organizations. Takes place each November.
AmeriCorps – Includes thousands of one-year service opportunities across the country. Application cycles and competitiveness varies by specific program.
- AmeriCorps State/National (direct service) — National programs, MN programs, programs sponsored by other states
- AmeriCorps VISTA (indirect service/capacity-building) — popular VISTA programs
- AmeriCorps NCCC (National Civilian Community Corps) (team-based projects throughout a region)
Faith-based Programs (Lutheran Volunteer Corps, Jesuit Volunteer Corps, etc.) – Programs typically require community living and encourage intentional reflection on values such as service, social justice, sustainability and spirituality.
Teach for America – Members are hired as full-time, first year teachers in under-resourced schools throughout the country, and receive full teacher’s salary. Most participants earn teacher certification and have the option to complete a master’s degree by the end of their two-year teaching commitment.
Alternative Routes to Teaching Certification Programs – Alternative routes to teacher certification are state-defined routes through which an individual who already has at least a bachelor’s degree can obtain certification to teach without necessarily having to participate in a campus-based certification program.
PeaceCorps – Peace Corps volunteers serve for two years (plus three months of training) in over 70 countries. St. Olaf has an outstanding record of preparing students for the Peace Corps. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and a Peace Corps recruiters visit campus usually once each semester.
Long-term International Volunteer Programs – Variety of programs, faith-based and secular, that provide partial or full funding for living expenses.
Teaching English Abroad – Hundreds of opportunities to teach English in another country. Compensation ranges from full salary in developed countries to living expenses only in less developed countries.