Service Learning

Volunteer to make a difference

IU Indianapolis is one of the most engaged campuses in the nation, and the Honors College prides itself in the value of engaged learning. Since our mission includes preparing honors scholars to make a difference in their local and global communities, participating in service is essential to the honors experience.

All students receiving an Honors College scholarship are required to complete volunteer hours each academic year and can submit their volunteer hours using our volunteer verification form below. The deadline for the submission of volunteer hours is the last day of the spring semester. Volunteer hours conducted after August 1 count toward your volunteer hours requirement for the upcoming academic year.

Submit volunteer hours

Benefits of community service

There are numerous benefits to participating in community service, both for yourself and others. These are some of the most important benefits of volunteering:

  • Gives you a way to help others
  • Improves your community
  • Strengthens your resume and applications
  • Is a way to meet new friends
  • Can lead to personal growth
  • Gives you a way to gain work experience

Details about community service

The Honors College follows the community service guidelines set forth by the IU Indianapolis Human Resources Administration, which states that "the volunteer service cannot promote religion, influence legislation or policy, or influence election to public office."

In addition, volunteer hours should be completed in person between the months of August and May at a local nonprofit organization, a campus entity (such as Paws Pantry, Ronald McDonald House, Jagathon, or one of the local hospitals), or any local organization that engages in charitable work in the community. All acceptable activities must be verifiable by a volunteer representative from the organization who oversees your participation in the activity. You cannot receive monetary compensation or academic credit for your volunteer service, and we are no longer accepting virtual volunteer hours.

Below you will find examples that are acceptable experiences for volunteer hours, as well as examples that are NOT acceptable experiences for volunteer hours.

    • Write and send cards to soldiers serving overseas
    • Make blankets for a local hospital or homeless shelter
    • Read, provide musical entertainment, or organize a bingo night or game day for nursing home residents
    • Build a house with Habitat for Humanity
    • Design a website or social media posts for a local nonprofit agency
  • Serve:
    • As a poll worker on election day
    • Meals at a homeless shelter or deliver meals to senior citizens
    • As a peer mentor in a position that does not provide monetary compensation or academic credit
    • As a volunteer coach for a local youth sports team
  • Organize:
    • A drive to collect items to donate to a center for abused women or the homeless
    • A fundraiser and donate the proceeds to a charity
  • Become:
    • A volunteer for a suicide prevention hotline
    • A Big Brother or Big Sister
  • Volunteer at:
    • An animal shelter
    • An adult literacy program
    • A hospital on campus or in the community
    • Paws Pantry or another food pantry
    • An after-school program for disadvantaged youth
    • The downtown Indianapolis Public Library
    • The Ronald McDonald House on campus
    • A charitable event sponsored by a place of worship
  • Participate in:
    • A charity walk
    • An organized service day on campus
    • An alternative break program
    • A campus or community cleanup project

  • Helping a friend, family member, or neighbor
  • Participating in activities that provide a benefit to your place of worship (such as, but not limited to, singing in the choir, babysitting in the nursery, or teaching Sunday school)
  • Performing expected duties as a student organization officer
  • Campaigning for a political candidate

Have questions?

If you're uncertain whether an experience will count toward your volunteer hours, please consult your honors advisor about it prior to submitting the volunteer verification form.

Honors service spotlight

Micaela Gaviola

Read about Micaela's experience at IUPUI, her involvement with service, and her passion for engagement and public health.

Read Micaela's story

Kevin Sanders

Read about how Kevin became IUPUI's first Newman Civic Scholar, which recognizes and supports community-committed students.

Read Kevin's story

Amber Greaney

Watch this Inspire IUPUI video to learn how Amber has dedicated her life to preserving the earth for future generations.

Watch Amber's video

Student service organizations

You can join the Honors College student service organization Academics for Civic Engagement (ACE), which partners with organizations in the Indianapolis community to plan monthly volunteer opportunities. You also can engage with service organizations on the IU Indianapolis campus at large.

Explore student service organizations