Why Volunteer?

Student U is a community organization that uses the power of education to build a just and equitable Durham. We empower and equip first-generation college students in Durham Public Schools, their families, and educators to become the leaders that will transform our city. Throughout the year, we rely on the support of more than one hundred volunteers with a variety of skills and backgrounds. There are many ways you can empower Student U students with your service of time and skills including tutoring, mentoring, and working at The W.G. Pearson garden. 

Volunteer as a Tutor

Volunteer tutors are an essential part of our efforts to ensure academic achievement for every student in every school. Volunteer tutors make a commitment to serve at least once a week for a semester. On average, our volunteer tutors volunteer at least 1-2 hours per session. All volunteer tutor positions are in the afternoon and evening hours. Generally, tutoring takes place at The W.G. Pearson Center, daily, during our after school middle school program and on Tuesday and Thursday evenings for our high school program. There are some virtual tutoring opportunities as well. 

You will hear from our Tutor Coordinator within 48 hours after completion. 

Volunteer as a Gardener

Volunteer gardeners help us provide fresh fruits and vegetables to families in our community. Our garden exists to combat the scarce access to fresh and healthy foods in our community, The W.G. Pearson Center operates a community and teaching garden in its backyard that produces fresh produce for our community members. Garden Workdays are scheduled on a monthly basis on Saturdays and typically run from 9:00-11:00AM. Typical volunteer activities include planting seeds, weeding the garden beds, watering and mulching the garden area, and general area maintenance.

A reminder email with relevant details will be emailed a week before the workday you sign up for.

Volunteer on a Committee

Volunteer participation in Student U committees is vital to the growth and development of the organization and joining a committee is an easy way to get involved. We currently have three committees available for volunteers. 
  • Finance Committee: Our Finance Committee exists to monitor our financial procedures, including creation and management of the annual budget, regular cash flow analysis, staff compensation, annual audit proceedings, and financial reporting to the Board. 
  • Safety Committee: Our Safety Committee exists to regularly monitor safety risks at Student U, both physical for our students and staff and also socially/emotionally. 
  • Dissemination Committee: Our Dissemination Committee will exist to support our revamped mission and strategic plan to share our best practices to impact the larger community (other than the 550 students and families directly served) and to generate revenue to increase sustainability as an organization. 

Volunteer Your Specialized Skills/Talents

Volunteers leveraging their specialized skills and talents strengthen the infrastructure of Student U, helping us build and sustain our capacity to successfully achieve our missions. Skill-based volunteering is a way to practice your most specialized skill while giving back in an impactful way. Volunteers don’t need to be part of a corporate volunteer program and there is ample opportunities to donate your skills at Student U. For instance, photography and videography, technology and innovation, healthcare and wellness, data and research, carpentry and construction, and much more. 

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