AmeriCorps

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AmeriCorps Reviews

Updated October 17, 2014
Updated October 17, 2014
280 Reviews
3.6
280 Reviews
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AmeriCorps Director Rosie K. Mauk
Rosie K. Mauk
80 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Non-profit based projects in numerous different states (in 23 reviews)

  • toward student loans, and meet others with similar interests (in 19 reviews)


Cons
  • living within the budget set by the living stipend (in 16 reviews)

  • I was a member of AmeriCorps state through a very disorganized non-profit (in 12 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Americorps...I worked with California Dept. of Veterans Affairs with county veterans services.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps VISTA in Martinez, CA
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps VISTA in Martinez, CA

    I have been working at AmeriCorps part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    -Decent coworkers- they will train you if you ask (this will depend on where you work though). I will meet with veteran service reps to enhance my knowledge. Most were willing to train me on their spare time.
    -Make your own hours (this depends on the organization and your boss though).
    -Able to build a good network, I got a referral from my boss and several coworkers for other positions.
    -This particular organization didn't care if I had another job.
    -Being able to help veterans and their families.
    -Some travel reimbursements and health care. There is some cost of living allowance at 500-600/month (part time) and a education grant. How much you get depend on your status of full time/part time. Also for the education grant, you must complete the required hours within you term.

    Cons

    -The pay and benefits is not worth it. If you are a service member or dependent looking to help Veterans, go through the GI Bill work study program. It pays better and you get a good feel for how benefits work. Once you have this knowledge, you can help people better. Since I worked through the VA work study program until my GI Bill expired I was able to land this position since I was in between jobs and was on military reserve status.
    -Americorps Vista in general 'don't' allow you to hold another job in order to experience poverty for yourself. Personally, that's a dumb idea. The organization I worked with didn't care though.
    -I wanted to know how to be a veterans service rep and wanted information about the tests but my boss (who works at the California Dept. of Veterans Affairs) wouldn't provide me the information despite reminding him. He just wanted to put me in that position or was told by his boss not to give it. The boss was seldom around.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Instead of having members cold calling and contacting veterans who wanted to be contacted years ago, put them through a training program on veteran's benefits. Set them up to be certified veterans services representatives. Let people hold other jobs. This way, food stamps and other social benefits go to those who really need it. Why put newly graduated college kid who is likely in debt already through this? If they can work, volunteer and not take social benefits from those who need it isn't that a good thing? Even my boss and I think the outlook of the program is bleak because no one can afford to work with this low of pay and not be allowed to work in other paying jobs.

    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    VISTA year service

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps VISTA in New York, NY
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps VISTA in New York, NY

    I have been working at AmeriCorps full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great experience, great look on resume, doorway to public service, non-competitive eligibility for federal jobs one year after your service ends, get to actually help people in need, work with and meet the greatest people.

    Cons

    one year commitment with poverty-level stipend pay while being prohibited from outside income in any capacity. many different levels of oversight from all over the country and frequent check-ins. being limited to one project only can be socially isolating at particular sites and makes networking much harder.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Dedicating your time to service

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Knoxville, TN
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Knoxville, TN

    I have been working at AmeriCorps full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Americorps is great way to start post-grad life without making an extended commitment to a company or place. While in Americorps, you qualify for student loan forbearance or are eligible for an educational grant which you can use for furthering your education. In my experience, Americorps will help to set you up with a living situation and roommates.

    Cons

    You receive an almost unlivable monthly stipend. Also, there is very little direction between Americorps and the site supervisors that manage the programs.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Challenging but fulfilling.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Greenfield, MA
    Former Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Greenfield, MA

    I worked at AmeriCorps as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Changing the world feels good. A good program will also give you great professional development. I'm not sure that I actually *got* really good professional development, but I also wasn't sure what I was looking for. Food stamps are pitched as a pro, however, the con is that you can't get unemployment when your term is up.

    Cons

    Long hours (sometimes 50hr weeks), low pay (less than 1k a month). Their health plan left a lot to be desired, and I hear it wasn't great even AFTER the ACA changed how we do health coverage. In any event, I went with state indigent health care instead.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I didn't expect to get rich doing AmeriCorps, but I also felt like to some extent, we were overworked beyond my expectations.

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    AmeriCorps VISTA

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at AmeriCorps

    Pros

    The VISTA program is great in theory, and if executed correctly in site, could be a very rewarding experience...

    Cons

    ...based on my experience at my site, I'm starting to doubt the practicality of the VISTA's theory of Capacity Building. Basically, I was treated like an intern who was there as free labor.

  7.  

    Mixed bag.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at AmeriCorps full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    This was a job that I never felt morally conflicted about at least in regards to the overall goal of the organization. That's the primary perk of working under a nonprofit. At the end of the day, you can -independent of most other factors- be confident that you set out trying to make a difference. And for an entry level position, you are allowed a surprisingly large degree of latitude if you take initiative and play your cards right.

    Cons

    As an AmeriCorps volunteer, your pay ends up a little below minimum wage (not taking into account the Education Award you get at the end of your service) for the time you put in. It's not a salary but a living stipend.
    Seemingly arbitrary grant requirements, operating outside of the bounds of logic and reality, will often cause you frustration no matter your position. You work by the hour, trying to build up to a total of 1700 hours over the course of your term (10 months to a year typically) which can be daunting and a source of stress if you don't pace yourself.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Lots of work not a lot of pay

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at AmeriCorps full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Help people--lots of opportunities to work in different capacities.

    Cons

    Lots of work, not a lot of pay, not organized.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    More organization!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Serving America

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Corps Member in Sacramento, CA
    Current Employee - Corps Member in Sacramento, CA

    I have been working at AmeriCorps as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    The AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps is part of a network of national service programs under the Corpo­ration for National Service and it is just one out of 600 programs in AmeriCorps. NCCC is a 10-month residential program for individuals between the ages of 18-24 years old. Members serve on teams of 10-11 at one of our four region campuses located in Denver, CO; Baltimore, MD; Sacramento, CA and Vinton, IA. Teams serve on projects that last from one day to nine weeks in the areas of energy conservation, environmental stewardship, urban & rural development, infrastructure improvement, and disaster relief. In exchange, members receive an education award, room & board, living allowance, medical insurance, uniforms, training, and transportation to and from the campus at the beginning and end of the year.

    Cons

    -Low pay in exchange for free travel, meals, housing, and transportation
    -Long and sometimes rigorous work days

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  10.  

    An amazing experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Vicksburg, MS
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member in Vicksburg, MS

    I have been working at AmeriCorps as a contractor (more than an year)

    Pros

    You get to see areas you normally would not get to go too. You get to see different landmarks and get to know local people. I had never been in the south before Americorps and now I want to move down there, everyone was so hospitable.

    Cons

    While most members of Americorps are outstanding, there are those select few who you would not expect to see in an organization meant to help others. In my year there were individuals who would steal anything they could get too, they would also take the TV cards out of any public TV so they would have free rain to watch what they wanted when they wanted. Stole food out of every teams fridge, and just left trash and debree wherever they went. Just vile people who cared only about themselves, and I have no idea why they joined Americorps with attitudes like that. Also when caught with stolen items the individuals were given 3 warning before termination. Americorps was way too lenient on them. Keep in mind though these were only 10 or 12 out of 200+ so did not ruin the amazing experience.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    AmeriCorps, and experience of a lifetime.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member
    Current Employee - AmeriCorps Member

    I have been working at AmeriCorps part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    You get to do so many different things, from tutoring to building houses with Habitat for Humanity; the opportunities are endless in this position. Traveling with your team is also a major plus.

    Cons

    You a paid with a small living stipend, and receive a scholarship upon completion of your 900 hours

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

AmeriCorps Photos

Fire Team 10 Mural The Funky Bunch Commandos (Photo thanks to Flickr user sundaykofax, available under by v2.0)
Fire Team 10 Mural The Funky Bunch Commandos (Photo thanks to Flickr user sundaykofax, available under by v2.0)

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