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Students are looking to join volunteering projects to help them get into University

Sunday 16th August 2009

Figures claim that 170,000 students might miss out on University places this year. Students are looking to join volunteering projects to help them get into University, onto vocational courses and to help them to find jobs.

Volunteering options seen as an alternative

Last year, Projects Abroad sent over 5,000 volunteers overseas to work on a voluntary project as part of a gap year. In the UK 41% of these were pre-university students, 18% were undergraduates and 78% of the total volunteers were between the ages of 16 and 24.

The most popular placements are care projects with over 21% of Projects Abroad volunteers participating in these projects. Voluntary care work is one of the most worthwhile activities you can get involved in, whether it is in a developed or a developing country.

“I felt the work we did contributed to the community, which made my experience more worthwhile and meaningful.” Luci Pollock (in Ghana)

Medical projects prove popular

Although many volunteers use a project as a time to do something worthwhile, it is also the perfect opportunity to gain some valuable work experience. Projects Abroad’s second most popular project is Medicine and Healthcare with over 17% of volunteers choosing this as their project. With ever increased competition for places at University to study Physiotherapy, Dentistry and Medicine many volunteers elect to do a short project which is applicable to their University choice to enable them to enhance applications both for University and for future employment opportunities.

‘As I’m studying medicine next year, travelling to India was the perfect way to gain more work experience as it was very different to anything I’d experienced in the UK” Charlotte Reynolds (in India).