FAQs: Summer VISTA 2020
How old do I have to be?
Do I have to have graduated from college?
No, only a HS diploma or GED is required.
How much is the living allowance for the summer?
$2,168.88 roughly $500 every two weeks.
How much is the education award if I complete my summer service term?
What can I use my education award for?
Use your ed award to pay back federal student loans, or towards the cost of attendance for college or continuing education.
Must I be a US citizen?
Summer VISTAs must all be US citizens, legal aliens, or permanent residents to receive and education award from their service. For the first time, due to recent CNCS policy change, applicants with DACA or refugee status are eligible to serve but will not receive an education award upon successful completion, instead receiving an end-of-service cash stipend of a lesser amount.
When is the program?
Summer VISTA runs in 2020 for 8 weeks from June 18th-August 12th. You will receive two days of training from Campus Compact before you start at your site and another full training day about halfway through. VISTAs serve full-time for the entire 8 weeks of service (roughly M-F during school hours). You must be available for these dates in order to serve with Summer VISTA.
How do I apply?
View our How to Apply Page to see the full steps of the Summer VISTA application process.
I am having trouble with the My.AmeriCorps.gov website. Help?
Don't worry, everyone does! You can complete a full My AmerCorps application by signing up on my.americorps.gov. After this is done, you can submit to the Summer VISTA listing. View our My.AmeriCorps.gov FAQ to help you troubleshoot, or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.
What is AmeriCorps VISTA?
AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) is the national service program designed specifically to fight poverty. VISTA members serve with community organizations to create and expand programs that build capacity and ultimately bring low-income individuals and communities out of poverty.
What will Summer VISTA Members do?
Each VISTA will serve full time with a community organization to prepare students for a successful transition into the next grade level. Specific member assignments will vary by site and might include:
Generating resources, materials, supplies, and space for project activities
Serving directly with rising students as tutors or assistant teachers
Helping with outreach to parents or guardians of students
Recruiting, training, and coordinating community-based volunteers
Developing lesson plans and activities for students
Involving businesses and community organizations in project activities
Developing materials for year-round project activities
Conducting community education, outreach, and awareness
How will the COVID-19 pandemic affect Summer VISTA programming?
Traditionally, Summer VISTAs work to prepare students for a successful transition into the next grade level and prevent summer learning loss. This summer, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Summer VISTAs will support any direct programming at our partner organizations that supports the well-being of students and families during the summer. In 2020, all Summer VISTA positions will be remote/work-from-home.
How will remote service work?
You will need reliable access to internet and a computer/laptop/tablet to serve successfully. Qualified applicants with concerns about access to technology should still apply and ask Campus Compact staff about their specific circumstances.
Why do Summer VISTAs work with rising 9th graders?
In 2012 high schools in the Portland Public School District averaged just 63% of students graduating on time. Ninth Grade Counts, a program of Connect by 25 and All Hands Raised, aims to change that by connecting youth with the support they need to enter high school on the right track. Research led by Connected by 25 has shown that the ninth grade transition is a critical time for students at risk of disconnecting– especially the summer months. This year, we have expanded to serve any site that has programming aimed to decrease summer learning loss with students, not just rising 9th graders.
Where will Members serve?
Members will serve at the following organizations in the Portland metro area:
- The Contingent (formerly, Portland Leadership Foundation)
- Native American Youth, and Family Center
- Wild Diversity
- PDX Alliance for Self-Care
- Urban League of Portland
Is this a job?
As national service participants Members will be volunteers, not employees. While serving Members are not allowed to hold a job that interferes with their full-time commitment.
What is Campus Compact of Oregon?
Campus Compact of Oregon is a nonprofit dedicated to promoting racial justice and equity in higher education through a focus on community engage learning and college and K12 partnership. We will oversee the recruitment and selection process for Members, provide them with pre-service training, and provide on-going support throughout their service.
What is the 2020 Program Calendar?
June 18-19th: Pre-Service Orientation
June 18th: First day of Service/VISTA Swear-in
Mid-July: In-Service training day; Campus Compact site visit day
August 12th: Closing Celebration and Last Day of Service
How can interested host sites apply?
If you are interested in hosting in 2021, email@example.com with questions.
I can't think of any way I would rather have spent my summer. I loved contributing to an effective program to help students in my community enter high school with greater confidence and likelihood to succeed."