There are plenty of ways for your student to get involved on and off campus in Oxford. Getting involved in Oxford is a great way to meet more people and feel connected with the community. It is also an excellent way to build a resume and gain experience that will aid in landing a job in the future. Luckily for your student, Oxford has many volunteer opportunities to get plugged into the community.
If your student is an animal lover, Mississippi Mutts and Mississippi Critterz are nonprofit animal rescue organizations in Oxford that are always looking for help. They take any kind of volunteer, and the role may or may not involve direct contact with the animals. Local school programs, such as LeapFrog, also host volunteers occasionally based on their needs. If faith plays an important role in your student’s life, many churches in town offer ways for students to get plugged in and help on Sundays or Wednesday nights. These are just a few of the many ways that your student can get involved in the community outside of Ole Miss. For a list of organizations in Oxford that are looking for help, visit United Way of Oxford’s website.
The Ole Miss campus has many opportunities as well. There are over 300 clubs and organizations on campus. If your student cannot find an organization that fits his or her interest, they are allowed/encouraged to create their own organization or club. The Associated Student Body, which serves as the student government, is very prominent at Ole Miss and is an excellent way for your student to meet new people and run for positions to affect change on campus. Another way to volunteer through Ole Miss is through the Big Event. Each year, students gather for the largest day of community service in the state of Mississippi. Students are divided into teams and sent to various sites around Oxford to perform acts of service (picking up trash on the side of the highway, performing yardwork for an elderly citizen, planting flowers at a dentist’s office, etc.). Executive Committee applications are released different dates throughout the year depending on the position, and Team Leader applications will go out next semester (even Freshmen can serve as Team Leaders). If your student is looking to help other students, the Ole Miss Food Bank is always accepting volunteers and donations to help its mission of providing nourishment to those on campus and ending student hunger.
Ole Miss has lots of opportunities for students and always encourages involvement. The university feels the best way for students to make the most out of their college experience is to participate in organizations they are interested in and try new organizations that may expand their horizons. While many use it to boost their resumes, volunteering teaches important life lessons and has proven to be self-fulfilling.