AmeriCorps Reviews

Updated August 17, 2015
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AmeriCorps Director Rosie K. Mauk
Rosie K. Mauk
5 Ratings

Pros
  • Your are connected with a lot of like minded people and can build relationships within the non-profit community (in 25 reviews)

  • You get money towards student loans/school (in 20 reviews)

Cons
  • living within the budget set by the living stipend (in 18 reviews)

  • It depends on the non-profit that hires you (in 12 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

36 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (2)

    Dont do it

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Vista in Newark, NJ
    Current Employee - Vista in Newark, NJ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    flexible work schedule, really nice management

    Cons

    disorganized, benefits arent even that good no healthcare and taxable educational award work on weekends

    Advice to Management

    improve communication


  2. Messy

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - AmeriCorps VISTA
    Former Employee - AmeriCorps VISTA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at AmeriCorps full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Money for school and in a larger network of people, or so I hear. Has the potential to look good on your resume.

    Cons

    Really do some research on the area if you move and on the AmeriCorp office that is over your site. They are all not the same, some helpful and others useless.

    Advice to Management

    Learn empathy, waste less resources, be more efficient with following through on promises


  3. Americorps vista

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Working with a non profit in under served communities in order to bring people out of impoverished living standards.

    Cons

    Pay is minimal to the point of relying on government benefits for quality of life living standards. Minimal support during year of service from program.

    Advice to Management

    Increase pay in order to increase living standards of workers. Help with housing for workers as well when relocating to new cities.


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. rough job

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Detroit, MI
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Detroit, MI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The education award is a wonderful asset along with insurance. You also get your taxes paid on your student loans while in the program.

    Cons

    Management is always bad, there is never clear expectations and almost always no employee support.

    Advice to Management

    You could be more organized, not let politics effect your decisions on who you serve, treat your members with respect and realize the sacrifice it takes to do this position


  6. Community Development

    Current Contractor - Anonymous Contractor
    Current Contractor - Anonymous Contractor

    I have been working at AmeriCorps as a contractor

    Pros

    You get an opportunity to network and a one year exemption for employment with the government.

    Cons

    The work that you do is severely constrained by your temporary status, age, trust the organization gives you, and the host limitation set forth as part of your contract.

    Advice to Management

    Get stricter on organizations and people that simply want to dish out their least favorite tasks and treat Americorp Service Members as clerical assistants.


  7. I should have known better

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at AmeriCorps full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    You can change the community you live in You can travel to a new place

    Cons

    Pay STINKS (but you know that going in) So much bureaucracy in the CNCS Monthly meetings (although there is food) Your opinion is void

    Advice to Management

    Even though many people are recent grads going into AmeriCorps, you need to treat them with humanity. So often VISTAs are treated as expendable cogs in the machine.


  8. Housing Coordinator

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Housing Counselor in Greensboro, NC
    Current Employee - Housing Counselor in Greensboro, NC
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at AmeriCorps part-time

    Pros

    Great volunteer experience and connections to agencies. Great for someone looking for a permanent position in the non-profit sector.

    Cons

    Too demanding for too little pay!

    Advice to Management

    Make the requirements less demanding. Especially for student workers.


  9. I worked for the California Dept. of Veterans Affairs through Americorps.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    This is good if: 1. You absolutely can't find work or in between jobs. 2. Considering switching fields (I wanted to go into Veteran's Services). I had a good fellow employee who showed me the ropes about the VA. 3. A student. 4. In my case I had decent county employees with me (I usually worked alone though in the county veterans service office).

    Cons

    1. The pay is next to nothing. 2. No future career prospects with the organization you work with. I tried to find a testing date for the California Veteran's Service Rep exam and the Regional Coordinator never told me despite the fact he recently took the test. 3. The organizations that use Americorps personnel are in it for really cheap labor.

    Advice to Management

    Listen if someone wants to be in the career field instead of looking at them as cheap labor. This should be an eye opener since I have left, they've been having a hard time recruiting for this position.


  10. You will not save the world.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - AmeriCorps VISTA in Reno, NV
    Former Employee - AmeriCorps VISTA in Reno, NV
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    You get an education award at the end of your term which you can put towards education or student loans. They will pay for you to relocate. Did it so I could experience somewhere new after I graduated college.

    Cons

    They advertise the AmeriCorps VISTA program as a way to "make a difference" in your community. They make you believe that this program has a history of alleviating poverty in communities or that they are making strides towards this goal when it is not true. The truth is that many non profits or government orgs that receive a grant for AmeriCorps VISTA members to work for them do not have the capacity to host these individuals. I ended up doing a whole lot of nothing because my office did not have the resources to oversee me or the other VISTAs. I know my incident is not isolated as I've shared my grievances with other VISTAs who have had similar experiences. As an AmeriCorps VISTA, they pay you nothing. You cannot get another job. They want you to "live under the poverty line so you can relate to the population you are serving." This does not make sense because poverty is not so isolated to something as simple as a salary. Many people living in poverty take on multiple jobs just to make ends meet. I felt very limited this way and I could have made more money and gained more experience by picking up a night or weekend job. You can't even babysit. I know there are few organizations that have success with their VISTAs and even then I am still hesitant to call it a success. Majority of VISTAs do not enjoy their term of service but stick it out for the education award. If you end your service early you get none of your education award.

    Advice to Management

    You tell VISTAs that it is going to be rough but they are going to make such a great difference in the community, even though it will be extremely hard at times. This is not true and most VISTAs figure this out very soon after starting the program. This program is outdated, and I have a really hard time recommending it to others.


  11. Helpful (2)

    Much useful training to add to my skills set, but tasks often hard and uninteresting and people sometimes discouraging

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - City of Tacoma Crew Member in Tacoma, WA
    Former Employee - City of Tacoma Crew Member in Tacoma, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Many useful formal trainings, and two over-night training weeks customized according to corps members' own preference Relatively easy for people aged 18 to 25 to get initially hired (especially in late August to mid-September); Washington Conservation Corps (WCC) apparently willing to hire all kinds of people even with extremely little or no related work experience If fitness is a personal priority for you, rest assured that this job keeps corps members fit (assuming one is willing to work as hard as their colleagues) Small to moderate chance of obtaining a scientific or educational internship after one year of crew work (if desired) Project successes commonly visually evident by comparing the natural state of the work area immediately before and after project work takes place, providing a variable degree (depending on the person) of motivation for completing future projects

    Cons

    Some of the following applies to my experience specifically with the City of Tacoma Super-(double-)crew: My colleagues tended to be particularly "rough around the edges", so to speak, which is very different from my own relatively stable personal background and required considerable adjustment and flexibility from me (City of Tacoma Crew specifically) As the above point may suggest, camaraderie among colleagues was fairly scarce in my experience, and my supervisor was particularly bitter, angry, and manipulative (this seems not to be a common experience in other WCC crews, according to conversations I had with other crews' members) Pay rate was minimum wage (universal to all crews) Projects involved hard manual labor, perhaps the hardest manual work many crew members would ever experience (universal to all crews) 2-year limit to employment; also, employment only open to people aged 18 to 25 (24-year-olds beginning their first year of WCC employment are thus limited to one year) Projects themselves usually involve extremely menial/repetitive labor (including removing debris from urban environments, pulling weeds for many hours to several days at a time, spreading huge amounts of sand on a beach, etc.)

    Advice to Management

    Remain aware of and genuinely interested in crew member experiences, as these bottom-level employees are the backbone, so to speak, of WCC accomplishments Keep the current focus on frequent training courses to enhance crew and individual placement members' skill sets Remain aware of WCC crew member-supervisor relationships; a bad supervisor-crew member relationship can ruin one or both of these peoples' WCC experience as well as decrease motivation to efficiently and happily complete WCC projects



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