Service Year + Higher Ed
Let’s work together to incorporate service years into higher education

Service Year Alliance believes that the incorporation of a year of service into the post-secondary education experience will better prepare students to complete their degrees, secure meaningful employment, and become lifelong engaged citizens. Service years in higher education have the power to attract students, enliven education, and put graduates on pathways to careers.

Service Year + Higher Education Engagement Opportunities

How Miami Dade College Incorporates Service Years into Higher Education

How Colleges and Universities Can Embrace a Service Year

There are various ways for colleges and universities to embrace a service year and play a leadership role in these efforts, including:

  • Recognize the service year experience to prospective students
  • Formalize deferrals for students accepted to college and service year programs
  • Give preference or special scholarships for service year program alumni
  • Match the Segal AmeriCorps Education Award

Join the Service Year EDU Network

The Service Year EDU network consists of institutions and associations across the country embracing the Service Year model. These colleges and universities are hosting service year programs, providing academic credit for service years, recognizing service years in enrollment, or educating students about service years through career services

Join the Service Year EDU Network

Host a Service Year Program

Develop a program for students or recent graduates to spend a year engaged in full-time service working to address unmet societal needs. Programs could take place before (e.g. a “bridge service year”), during (e.g. “a junior service year” or “capstone service year”) or after the traditional university experience (e.g. “a post-graduation service year fellowship). These programs allow students to apply what they’ve learned in the classroom to work experiences grounded in community needs.

Download the Connecting Service Years to Academic Credit Toolkit


Promote service year programs through career services

A service year is a terrific pathway to a career. We encourage higher education institutions to promote service year programs through careers services at career fairs, by posting service year positions on job boards, and by directing students to the Service Year Exchange.

Become an Employer for National Service

Service year alumni develop leadership and professional skills during their year of service, making them high-quality employees. Join over 350 Employers of National Service — including Arizona State University, Averett University, and others — and give service year corps members a leg up when applying to jobs with your college or university.

Become an Employer of National Service

Our Higher Ed Partners

Campus Compact
We are thrilled to partner with Campus Compact as they celebrate their 30th Anniversary. As they engage colleges and universities to advance the public purposes of higher education, service year opportunities can be a powerful element in the development of a fully engaged campus.

Commonwealth of Virginia
In partnership with Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, First Lady of Virginia Dorothy McAuliffe, and the VA Engage network, Virginia is leading the way by making a service year part of what it means to participate in higher education in Virginia.

Gap Year Association
Gap Year Association serves as the key gap year partner organization for Service Year Alliance. Given the strong alignment between the missions of Service Year Alliance and Gap Year Association, we believe that together we can increase the awareness of gap and service years individually and increase the opportunities of service focused gap years.


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Special thanks to the Lumina Foundation and the Joyce Foundation for supporting our higher education work.  


Want to incorporate service years into higher education? Let us know!

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Service Year + Higher Ed
Service Year + Higher Ed|Let’s work together to incorporate service years into higher education
Together we have the potential to make a #serviceyear a common expectation and opportunity for all