Dear American University students,
The 2012 Appropriations Bill passed by the House of Representatives ends future funding for AmeriCorps. It eliminates all Corporation for National and Community Service programs except the Senior Corps and provides only enough money for the “orderly elimination” of all other programs. If passed into law, there would be zero AmeriCorps positions available for 2012- 2013.
If you have ever considered applying for AmeriCorps, Teach for America, City Year or another national service program, we need your voice to Fight the Zero!
If you believe that young adults should have the opportunity to serve their community through AmeriCorps programs, we need your voice to Fight the Zero!
If you currently serve in Jumpstart and receive an AmeriCorps Education Award, we need your voice to Fight the Zero!
We’re calling all AmeriCorps alumni, future AmeriCorps members, current AmeriCorps members and supporters of national service to join us Nov. 3 from 8-10 a.m. at the doorways of the Capitol buildings to show our representatives that we are young adults and we want to save AmeriCorps. Register at http://www.fightthezero.org.
As students across the nation are aware, the job market isn’t good. Currently youth unemployment in America stands at around 20 percent according to The Economist. For American University seniors thinking about life after graduation or graduate students searching for their perfect job, the stories about hundreds of applicants for every job opening is a terrifying prospect.
AmeriCorps and other national service programs such as City Year and Teach for America offer young adults the opportunity to serve their community while earning a stipend and an Education Award for future tuition or to pay back student loans.
As an AmeriCorps alumna, I cannot stand silently and watch AmeriCorps be eliminated. AmeriCorps members benefit the communities they serve in numerous ways. The VISTA team I served on in 2010-2011 generated more than $25,000 in monetary resources for the community, recruited more than 3,000 volunteers and facilitated more than 25,000 volunteer hours — and that was just one team of 11 members! Across the nation, national service members are doing fantastic things for their communities while learning job skills. The benefits generated for the communities and the members far outweigh the costs of running the programs.
Lizzie Martinez, School of Public Affairs
MPA, Class of 2013