In November 2010, Vanessa Danziger was getting ready to graduate with a bachelors degree in Sociology from Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. Her job search was on an off-cycle timeline than most new graduates, who generally look for jobs with start dates in the summer or early fall. Vanessa was looking for an opportunity that started in January and gave back to her community - joining City Year as a Mid-Year AmeriCorps Member was the perfect choice.
Not only am I a proud City Year alum, I am a very proud MID-YEAR alum.
Being a Mid-Year AmeriCorps member is a really special experience. I proudly served at Gilbert Stuart Middle School in Providence, Rhode Island for an all-too-short 5 ½ months, from January to mid-June in 2011. The students I met, the friends I made, the reward from my service and the learnings have stayed with me everyday. The students were eager to meet “the new City Year,” the teachers/administration were grateful for the extra help, and the whole team was eager to help get me up to speed.
Joining Mid-Year allowed me to jump directly into service in the school.
There was definitely a learning curve once I was in the school to “get in the groove” and understand how the team functions, the culture of the school and develop relationships with the students. But, the transition was smooth and within a few weeks, it felt like I had always been a part of the team. I was one of only four Mid-Years joining City Year Rhode Island, so we had special onboarding training tailored to us. This small group environment offered a safe space for questions and extra attention to ensure each of us felt prepared to dive into service in-schools.
I knew I wanted more time with City Year before my Mid-Year experience ended.
During my onboarding, I learned that applications for becoming a senior corps member were launching in a month and that there was a City Year site in Los Angeles. After five years in Rhode Island, I was ready to move back to my home state of California and excited by the opportunity to serve with City Year Los Angeles. Serving as a Mid-Year prepared me to serve at a different site. I was used to being the “new kid” in my Corps at CYRI, therefore being the “new kid” at CYLA didn’t phase me - roughly 90% of my fellow team leaders had served their corps year at CYLA.
The skills I cultivated and the relationships I formed as a Mid-Year have prepared me to throw myself into new opportunities regularly and have been foundational to my career at City Year.
Vanessa Danziger is now Manager of Internal Communications for City Year at the National Headquarters and has served on staff for City Year, Inc for three years following her 1 ½ corps years. You can learn more about her Mid-Year experience and her rewarding work with a student named Helen:
The benefits of serving as a Mid-Year include but are not limited to:
A bi-weekly living stipend ranging between $568-$674 depending on site location
A Segal Education Award of $2,907 to be applied to past or future education
Opportunity to return as a Senior AmeriCorps member in the next school year
We are now accepting applications. It is the same application as the full year term of service, so you can get started ASAP. Feel free to reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions you might have.
Editorial Note: This post was updated November 7, 2017 in order to share up-to-date information regarding our application form and process.