Volunteer Hour Requirement Does Not Encompass Intristic Reason for Service


Whether it’s a mental or physical checklist, many students strive to complete specific tasks that will lead them to their ultimate goal of being a “well rounded” high school student. Photo by: Bailey Elliott


Being well rounded is the one of many goals high school students push to achieve in order to pursue their dreams of getting into college. Feeling the need to take part in extracurriculars, sports, AP classes and various other commitments including community service, students strive to follow the popular belief that it is vital to be a well-rounded student to get anywhere past high school. While it is helpful to be well rounded, what does this mean for the worth of volunteering?

The act of volunteering should be to help others out of the kindness of one’s heart, not to fulfill a certain number of hours that are required for school. When the only drive to get out and help others is to check a box off then it detracts from the true message of volunteering.

“It kind of makes people go through it half heartedly when they feel it is a need and not more of a want,” junior Lindsay Ahn said.

Even the belief that the sole purpose to community service is to create a difference on a large scale isn’t necessarily true towards everyone as the simple want to take action and serve the community as an act of kindness. This brings up the question: should the motive behind volunteering justify the act itself? Whether the reason behind volunteering is self driven or not, the impact of getting out and helping the community is still being made.

Many students are attracted to various service opportunities due to the requirement needed and even become inspired to continue volunteering for the greater good rather than the requirement.

“I began volunteering only because I had to, but I soon grew to enjoy getting out and helping serve the community just to make an impact,” sophomore Jessica Borden said.

Community service is meant to be voluntary work intended to help others, not something high school students stress about completing as a requirement. While students are more open to taking part in community service than they normally wouldn’t because of the requirement, encouraging one to volunteer for the greater good is acceptable among teenagers, however, driving students to complete community service to obtain certain graduate requirements is not.