Community Engagement

Nearly all UMR students engage in the Rochester community. Many students engage through volunteer opportunities. 

Resources to Help Connect You to Your Community

  • Attend the UMR Involvement Fair during the first week of classes in the fall.
  • The United Way of Olmsted County offers a volunteer search feature that can help connect you to local needs. 
  • You can also search using Volunteer Match.
  • Watch for opportunities in the Raptor Report student e-newsletter.
  • Consider joining a Club. UMR student clubs often participate in volunteer and service opportunities in Rochester.
  • Take Community Collaboratory - CLI 2522, This course extends the student learning experience into the Rochester community, partnering with local organizations to analyze and approach community needs.
  • Activate your GoldPASS powered by Handshake Account. GoldPASS powered by Handshake is the University of Minnesota's professional job, internship, and volunteer database connecting students and alumni with employment opportunities throughout the world. GoldPASS powered by Handshake is available to students and alumni from all 5 campuses (Crookston, Duluth, Morris, Rochester and Twin CIties).

Examples of Past UMR Student Experiences 



Seasons Hospice

Direct, Indirect, and Bereavement Care

Family Service Rochester

Family Access Center Volunteer

Minnesota Teen Challenge

Administrative Support Volunteer

Boys and Girls Club


Women's Shelter

Childcare Volunteer

Paws and Claws Humane Society


St. Mary's Hospital*


Mayo Clinic*

Pediatric Volunteer, Hospice Center, Gift Shop, 

Office for Diversity in Mayo Medical School*


Juntos RCTC

Spanish Teaching Aide

Brighter Tomorrows


Gift of Life Transplant House*


Ronald McDonald House*


Hawthorne Education Center


National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)

Mental Health Volunteer

Good Samaritan Dental Clinic and Pharmacy*


Rochester Center for Autism

Activity Planner

The Homestead at Rochester

Volunteer with an Occupational Therapist

Diversity Council


American Cancer Society Hope Lodge of Rochester*


Channel One Food Bank


* Indicates it is within walking distance of UMR

Engage and Reflect

Try keeping a journal as you participate in your volunteer experience. Reflective writing can help you create meaning and gain depth of understanding about what you are doing, why it matters, and how this experience will shape your future. You are encouraged to discuss these topics with your Student Success Coach. 

Example Reflection Questions:

  • What has been challenging? How are you being stretched?
  • What aspects of your experience energize you? What aspects deplete you?
  • How does the work you are doing connect to the mission and purpose of the organization? 
  • In what ways are your helping to meet the needs of your community?
  • Name the skills you are actively developing and take note of examples of when and how you used them.
  • How is the work you are doing connected to Health Sciences? How has your previous experience at UMR contributed to the skills you are using now?
  • What have I found to be the value of serving others as an undergraduate student?
  • What am I learning about myself and how might this experience inform that type of professional I would like to be?