Northeastern University: Center of Community Services

Student Clubs & Organizations

The Center of Community Service offers support to new and existing student clubs and organizations. All student organizations are run and overseen by the Center for Student Involvement.

If your organization is looking to do one-time or ongoing community service, stop by our office in 172 Curry for ideas and advice, visit our Service Finder, or attend one of our volunteer fairs or networking events.

If you are looking to start a philanthropic or community engagement focused club, you will need to receive a letter of support from the Center of Community Service. Prior to contacting Becca Berkey or Hilary Sullivan, be prepared to respond to the questions below.

  • Is the community interested in the service you are offering? How do you know? 

Many times, students and student groups have good intentions, but the service you envision might already be offered by another group or organization, or the need might not exist in the community. Our Center uses an Asset Based approach to Community Development, so we always want to be sure we are starting by looking at the assets communities have, rather than assuming what they don’t have.

  • Are any other student organizations doing similar work?

Great minds think alike, and with many great minds at Northeastern, sometimes there is already an organization or group doing similar work to what you have in mind. We believe strongly in collaboration, so will want to hear if you are aware of other student groups and if you have talked with them about the possibility or collaboration. Collaboration allows resources to be used more effectively, and can make work easier on you.

  • Do you have partnerships established?

Often, the best way to ensure that the community need is being met is by partnering with an existing nonprofit organization, school or government agency, as they are usually more in touch with the community they are serving. For example, it is better to work with a local soup kitchen to identify what types of food or volunteers they need, rather than trying to prepare meals in residence halls to give to homeless individuals. If you do not yet have partnerships developed, our office can help with that!

  • How are you planning for a sustainable future of your organization?

Once a partnership is established, organizations come to rely on their volunteers and the services they provide. We want to hear how your club is planning ahead – what will happen once you go on co-op, or the founding members graduate. We want to hear about the plan you are developing to build a sustainable student organization.

Once you have answers to these questions, email Becca and Hilary to share your idea and your answers to these questions, and they will consider your request for a letter of support.