During this National Volunteer Week, we want to say thank you to all our amazing volunteers! Thank you for the incredible contributions you make on campus and to our community.  

At U of G, we encourage volunteering as one of the many ways our students can get real world experiential learning that helps them become job ready upon graduation. Throughout U of G, the spirit of giving back is strong; the U of G Economic Impact Report shows that 34% of students at U of G are engaged in community service and contribute 1.5 million community service hours annually.  

“Student Volunteer Connections are so grateful to each of the U of G students, staff and faculty who have shared their time and energy this year volunteering in our community,” said Helen Keen, local engagement coordinator for the Experiential Learning Hub. “Guelph has always been known for its strong sense of connection and community support, and we are so proud that our U of G community keeps that reputation going.” 

Peer helper awards 

To recognize those who have made exceptional contributions over the last year, Student Experience and Student Wellness Services have announced their 2023-24 Recognition Awards. 

Congratulations to all the students, volunteers and staff who received awards. Learn more about the winners of the Student Wellness Services Recognition Awards

Meet our Peer Helpers 

Across campus, students join Peer Helper teams to provide important services and supports to their peers. Founded in 1984, U of G’s Peer Helper Program is the first and longest-running campus peer support program in Canada.  

Over 250 undergraduate and graduate students from a broad range of academic programs volunteer as Peer Helpers on 20+ different teams, including OUTline, International Student Experience, Student Wellness Services and the Library, each year. Peers develop employment skills, receive mentorship and support, and make lasting memories through roles include advising, facilitating social events, education, and more! 

Meet some of this year’s Peer Helpers in the U of G Library and Student Wellness Services. 

Arielle smiles at the camera. She has long dark hair and glasses and wears an longsleeve black shirt.

Arielle, 4th year Biological Science student and Library Peer Helper 

“I became a Peer Helper because I have used library services in the past and I wanted to be able to reach out and help others who may be in the same situation as me. My favourite thing about being a peer helper (besides the great team) is being able to meet the people who come to us for help! My best piece of advice for students would be that rejection is redirection. If something doesn’t work out or has gone wrong, try a different way. One thing I wish everyone knew about the library is that everyone here is willing to help. There are so many amazing people and resources to help with almost every academic need, all you need do is reach out and we’ll meet you halfway!”

Hannah, 5th year Biomedical Toxicology co-op program and Library Peer Helper 

“The best part of my role is building rapport with the students I meet and celebrating their successes throughout the semester. One thing I’m passionate about is encouraging my peers to take advantage of every opportunity. Remember, even 20 seconds of courage can go a long way! I wish more people knew about the free library help guides that are accessible on the library’s website. They’re completely free and cover a wide range of topics relevant to your courses or subjects. They are an invaluable resource for academic success.”

Abbey, 2nd Year Biomedical Science Student and Mental Health Peer Helper with Student Wellness 

“Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there! I have only met the kindest and most accepting people through my volunteer experiences. Volunteering is truly one of the best ways to learn and grow as an individual, all while making some of your best friends and mentors along the way.”

Troy, 3rd Year Sociology Student and Student Support Network Volunteer 

“I learned how much getting involved on campus can improve your university experience. I have met so many fantastic people through volunteering with the Student Support Network, and it has been a super fulfilling experience that has contributed to my personal development.”

Khushi, 4th Year Human Kinetics Student and Health & Performance Centre Volunteer 

“Volunteering offers practical learning and the joy of making a difference. If you’re passionate, dive in! There’s a unique fulfilment in helping others.”

 Find more profiles of Library Peer Helpers on their Instagram page @uglibrary

Volunteer opportunities 

Looking to get involved on campus? Check out these upcoming volunteer opportunities. 

Project Serve Day: Green Legacy 

Project Serve Day introduces students to community service through a half-day of volunteering with a local non-profit organization where students gain experience and have fun. Take a break from studying and join Student Volunteer Connections for an afternoon of stress-busting by volunteering with Green Legacy Tree Nursery. You might even make a new friend – 83% of participants in previous Project Serve events made a new friend while volunteering. Register to participate by April 16 at 3 p.m. 

  • Wednesday, April 17, 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Meet at University Centre) 

Orientation Week Volunteer 

Want to support new students as they join the Gryphon family? Be an Orientation Volunteer! Whether this is your first time being an Orientation Volunteer or your fourth, there are ways that everybody can make a significant difference in the lives of new students as they come to the University of Guelph for the first time! Apply to be a part of Orientation Week 2024 by filling out the Orientation Volunteer Application.  

Experiential Learning Hub 

Students can learn about volunteer postings on the Student Volunteer Connections CourseLink Page (from the CourseLink homepage, select the Self-Registration Tab and select Student Volunteer Connections to register) or sign up for the Experiential Learning Hub weekly e-news, to receive postings and volunteer-related events.