Scholars in Service
The Scholars in Service to Pennsylvania (SISPA) program is a federal government sponsored AmeriCorps program. Participating students enroll as AmeriCorps members on a part-time basis and receive a partial Education Award at the end of their term. The Scholars in Service to Pennsylvania program offers students the possibility of enrolling as “quarter-time” or “minimum-time” members at the following awards and commitment levels.
For the 2012-2013 year:
*Quarter-time 450 hours of service $1,468 Ed Award
*Minimum-time 300 hours of service $1,175 Ed Award
The term of service is August 22, 2012-August 21, 2013.
Students earn their educational award at the completion of their term of service. The award can be used to pay for any legitimate educational expenses at the current undergraduate institution or to pay for future educational expenses (up to seven years). It can also be used to pay for existing federal educational loans. Note that the educational award is taxable.
Scholars will commit to volunteering with one primary community organization or project throughout the school year. This may be supplemented with ad-hoc volunteering and project leadership in other areas, but primarily, relationships should be built with one primary organization (at most two) so that the Scholar and the community can both achieve the maximum benefit. Students may work with a second organization during the summer months, if necessary.
The Scholars in Service to Pennsylvania program has a focus on volunteer recruitment and management. Students will need to meet with the agency and create a job description which will be handed in to the Community Outreach Office with the AmeriCorps enrollment paperwork at the end of May.
Frequently Asked Questions:
How do I apply?
Internal applications become available in early April. Once accepted, AmeriCorps enrollment paperwork must be completed and handed in to the Community Outreach Office during Final Exam week.
Are clearances required?
Yes. AmeriCorps requires students to complete clearances. The campus supervisor will provide you with details as you apply.
How many hours do I need to spend at my service site each week?
Volunteer at site 5-6 hours per week – including the summer if necessary.
What are the other commitments?
* Focus on recruiting and managing additional volunteers for your primary host site for an additional 4-5 hours per week.
* Hours in the Community Outreach Office coordinating projects and/or with an academic department coordinating service-learning can count as service hours. Typically, the SISPAs have evening office hours approximately two hours per week.
* Recruit other students to volunteer.
* Participate in regular training and/or reflection sessions. We typically meet monthly as a group as well as individually.
* In April, the SISPAs typically complete a group service project together.
* Informing your campus supervisor immediately any time you are unable to complete your service hours as planned.
* All other responsibilities as needed.
How do I keep track of my hours?
It is important to complete all necessary AmeriCorps paperwork in a timely fashion. Service hours must be logged electronically on the myvolunteerpage.com.
For more information, contact Lori Moran, Assistant Director of Community Outreach at firstname.lastname@example.org or 941-7429, or by stopping by her office in DeNaples 205-B Monday-Thursday from 8:30-1:30.
2011-12 Scholars In Service Participants are Left to Right:
Alyssa Thorley, Mike Wiencek, Kendrick Monestime
Michelle Dougherty, Gina-Lou Deplantes
Missing from Photo: Robert Cermignano, Nora Henry, Tim Plamondon, Kady Luchetti