By, Ryan Arthur, Midwest Regional Admissions Manager
Prior to City Year, I was an assistant cross country and track coach for Missouri Southern State University. Much like City Year, the atmosphere was very team oriented. I noticed that the first week of practice was a huge struggle for the freshman. They were running more miles, faster than they ever had before, but they also were trying to adapt to living on their own, going to class, and trying to make new friends.
As a coach, I wanted the most out of my athletes and saw that I could eliminate some of these struggles before they even reported for their first day of practice. As soon an athlete signed their letter of commitment to run for MSSU, I added them to a private Facebook group so they could feel like part of the team immediately. The current team made funny questionnaires, posted meet results, and talked about life as a college athlete. When the first day of practice arrived, I noticed that the freshman had one less thing to worry about and their transition was much easier.
With City Year, we try to do the same thing. When you accept your offer to serve with us, you’ll be invited to join a special, private Facebook group. The purpose of the Confirmed AmeriCorps Member Facebook groups is:
1. For you to make friends before you arrive in at your service site for registration and training. I know this sounds far fetched, but if you ask current City Year AmeriCorps members what they wish they would have done differently prior to serving, they will tell you that they wish they would have taken advantage of the Facebook group to meet their teammates earlier. We’ll help break the ice so that you can get to know each other! And maybe even find a roommate or two.
2. Share important information. There are a lot things that have to happen between now and registration day. We will use this page to let you know what you need to complete in order to start on time and to remind you of important dates and deadlines.
3. Prepare you to #MakeBetterHappen! Your transition to becoming a successful City Year AmeriCorps Member begins the moment you return your letter of intent to serve. City Year has a vocabulary and culture all our own. We’ll help you become more familiar with City Year-isms, traditions and the cities, communities and students you’ll be serving. We'll also help you be able to navigate your potentially new city like a local and provide suggestions for neighborhoods to apartment hunt in.
This facebook group is yours, so feel free to post questions/comments/funny stories/thoughts along the way.
There are lots of reasons to utilize the Confirmed Corps Member Facebook group. Here are my top 10:
Learn about your service city. Ex. How to navigate, where to eat, where to live, etc.
Immerse yourself with City Year’s culture.
Be engaged in what City Year is doing in the city where you will serve next year.
Stay updated on tasks you need to complete before registration day.
Find answers to all your questions. We encourage you to ask questions! More than likely someone else will be wondering the same thing.
Learn more about why your year of service is so important to both you, and your future students.
Master how to live on a stipend.
Learn more about your benefits as a City Year AmeriCorps member.
Make friends before you arrive!
Not on Facebook? Don’t fret. We offer other opportunities to learn about your site and teammates before your first day of service. Keep an eye out for our newsletters and local events!