Take a Post-Graduation Gap Year with City Year

Before Allie Zatkin graduated from IU, she wasn’t really sure what she wanted to do.

“I knew I wanted to work with people and work for a mission I was passionate about, but in full transparency, I didn’t really know what that was or what that looked like,” she said.

After graduating, she did an internship at a small Detroit non-profit, and it was through her work there that she was lead to City Year.

Senior Regional Recruitment Manager, Allie Zatkin

I was instantly drawn to the mission of City Year,” Allie said. “From the first time I stepped into the City Year office, I was magnetized to the passion of everyone who passed by.”

Find out more about the Benefits of a Gap Year

She returned home from that visit, immediately filled out an application to serve, and has been with City Year ever since. First, she was an AmeriCorps Member who proudly served in a 6th-grade classroom in Boston, and now as a Recruiter, who proudly recruits young people (like you!) to serve in one of our schools across the country and believe in the brilliance of the kids we serve.

How does City Year Help Build a More Equitable Future?

We asked Allie to tell us more about City Year:

What’s the office culture like? What distinguishes your organization from others?
At City Year, we believe every child can succeed, and when students succeed, we all benefit. City Year brings together people who are passionate about building their careers and creating access to equitable learning opportunities. Because of this, our culture is diverse and inclusive. We are fueled by purpose and committed to collaboration. We value diverse perspectives and are prepared to adapt quickly in order to solve challenges that come our way. I think our commitment to the mission and culture of our organization is what distinguishes us from others.

What skills do successful students in your organization have?
We look for students who exhibit skills that align with our values. Students who are team players, can show empathy, are passionate about social justice, and strive for excellence typically do well at City Year. We also look for a growth mindset, a level of self-awareness around who you are and how you will show up in the work we do, and people who are passionate about service to a cause greater than self.

Why is a liberal arts education valuable? Why do you recruit students with this background?
A liberal arts education leads to key skills that make incredible City Year AmeriCorps members. First, with a liberal arts degree, students learn to communicate effectively. This is crucial for success at City Year. We will ask you to communicate with your peers, manager, students, teachers and staff in the school you are serving at, as well as donors and professionals within the community you are serving.

Being able to communicate widely and effectively is imperative to your success. Second, a liberal arts education improves critical thinking skills. We will ask AmeriCorps members to think about problems and situations from several different lenses. You will have to analyze, problem-solve, and ultimately be open-minded to several different challenges throughout your year of service. Finally, a liberal arts education is a well rounded one, which is exactly what we want our corps members to be.

Join this Organization

City Year is continuing to recruit for the next service year, with start dates in summer 2020. When schools reopen, City Year AmeriCorps members will have a critical role in helping students reconnect with their school community, re-engage in their learning and recover from learning loss as a result of COVID-19.

By Maureen Langley
Maureen Langley Designer & Marketing Coordinator Maureen Langley