Volunteer Hiring

What’s Available?

The Students’ Union hires over 1000 student volunteers to help us run our Programming, Services and various other departments throughout the school year.

We also employ about 250 part-time staff during peak operation across both Brantford and Waterloo campuses. We operate Golden Grounds Coffee Pub, Williams Fresh Cafe and U-Desk in Brantford, as well as Wilf’s Restaurant & Bar, Turret Nightclub and U-Desk in Waterloo. If you are interested in paid positions with us, check out: yourstudentsunion.ca/jobs

If you are interested in any of the above opportunities, check out the sections below to see what positions we currently have available. If you don’t see something that interests you now, be sure to check back frequently as we post positions at varying times throughout the year.

 

Interested in Volunteering?

To submit an application online, please visit hiring.yourstudentsunion.ca.

To learn more about the STARR hiring system, scroll down!

Click Volunteer Hiring Procedural Manual to see our volunteer hiring manual.

The Students’ Union is committed to providing diverse and inclusive programming for all students. This includes hiring a diverse and representative group of volunteers. We welcome and encourage applications from qualified individuals of all genders, sexual orientations, persons with disabilities, and persons of a minority. In your application process, if you require an accommodation due to a disability please contact VP: Financial and Volunteer Operations, Brooke Abbott (suvpfvo@wlu.ca).

Alternatively, if you have questions about a past application or performance as a volunteer please contact VP: Financial and Volunteer Operations, Brooke Abbott (suvpfvo@wlu.ca) to set up a feedback meeting!

 

What type of Volunteer Opportunities do we have?

Volunteer Opportunities are available on multiple levels through the Students’ Union- coordinators, executives, team leads and general volunteers. Positions can be found to meet varying goals and interests of students. Opportunities provide experiential learning, professional and personal development, social interaction, and volunteer perks to those that pursue them. Training opportunities and professional development are offered consistently throughout the year which gives volunteers opportunities to seek out opportunities to learn and develop skills. Volunteering is recorded on the Co-Curricular record which can be used to supplement future applications to further education as well as employment opportunities.

Volunteers are encouraged to step up into leadership positions which further enhance their student experience as they develop strong leadership and management skills that will serve them at Laurier and beyond. Laurier is a leader in volunteerism and was ranked amongst the top universities in the world thanks to a strong involvement of students on campus as well as a renowned volunteer culture! All volunteer positions are hired by the student-run Hiring and Recruitment committee using a standardized application format called STARR.

 

Need help with STARR?

Behavioural Interview Techniques – The STARR Approach used by the WLU Students’ Union

 

WHAT IS STARR AND WHY DO WE USE IT?

First and foremost, STARR is a behavioural based interviewing system that is designed to get the applicant to talk about experiences they have had in the past, how they worked through specific problems/tasks/situations, what the outcomes were and how the problems/tasks/situations relate back to the position they are applying for.

Behavioural based interviewing is used by many Human Resources departments and Human Resources professionals as it gives employers a good indication of how an applicant will handle future situations if they arise. The Students’ Union uses STARR as it allows for the Hiring and Recruitment team to standardize marking across all volunteer applications. It minimizes bias as well as prepares people for the real world. Whether a company calls their technique STARR or not, behavioural based questions (also referred to as situational based questions) will almost always be asked (eg. tell us about a time when…, describe a situation when you had to … give us an example of …); so getting to know the process now will only aid you in the future.

So here are some tips if you are applying for a volunteer position within the Students’ Union:

 

WHAT IS THE STUDENTS’ UNION LOOKING FOR WHEN YOU ARE WRITING A STARR ANSWER?

S – Situation; explain a situation that you were in that works with the question being asked

T – Task; what was YOUR task in the specific situation

A – Actions; we are looking for three (3) distinct actions that YOU took in order to accomplish your task; we want to know what you did. In the action portion of your application, make sure you talk about a quality you showed and then explain how you showed that quality. So for some examples:

I communicated by …

I took initiative by …

I used problem solving skills by …

I delegated tasks by …

Think of qualities/attributes that you think would be important for the position you are applying for and how you showed those qualities in your situation you are describing.

R – Result; we just want to know how it went! Either good or bad is fine. Don’t worry about going too in depth here! It should be very quick.

R – Relate; this is probably one of the most important parts of your answer. You will now take a look back at the actions you have said and discuss with the hiring panel how they relate to the position you are applying for. So for example, if you had communication as one of your actions, you should be able to explain why communication relates to the position you are applying to. Some tips for the relating portion:

Relate all of your actions back to the position you are applying to

You write/say the position you are applying to at least once while you are relating (eg. This relates to Foot Patrol because …)

This will probably be the largest portion of your application; that’s ok! We want to see how your experiences in the past will help you in your new volunteer role.

 

SO NOW YOU HAVE AN IDEA OF WHAT WE ARE LOOKING FOR … HOW CAN YOU PREPARE?

Identify examples from your past experiences where you demonstrated different behaviours/qualities that would help you in the position you are applying for

Don’t just look at positive examples! Sometimes you learn more from experiences that don’t work out quite like you were expecting

Vary your examples. This can be from work, volunteer, school, sports team, life, and anything in between

Try to pull from recent examples; sometimes you can’t and that is totally okay! But the more recent, it usually is fresher in your mind and easier to explain to a hiring panel.

 

IF YOU GET AN INTERVIEW, WHAT CAN YOU DO TO FEEL MORE PREPARED?

Write everything down and bring it in with you to your interview. It can be used as a cheat sheet and could help jog your memory when you are asked a question and can’t come up with something right off the bat

PRACTICE! STARR doesn’t come easy to everyone, so definitely take a look at the STARR vault we have posted and practice some questions. The more you practice, the easier it will come.

When you are in your interview, listen to the question carefully. Take your time and ask the hiring panel to repeat it if necessary. If you need clarification, don’t be afraid to ask!

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q: When to volunteer opportunities open for hiring?

A: There are generally 3 hiring periods- one in the summer (June), one in the Fall (September), and one in the Winter (Feb-March). Both summer and Winter hiring are generally open to fill positions which will begin in September of that year.

However, if any of our committees are low on volunteers, hiring can reopen as frequently and as many times as we see fit. So keep an eye on the hiring site and our social media pages because there may be a position open for you even if it is outside of the regular hiring periods.

Q: How do I apply for volunteer positions?

A: Position postings can be found at hiring.yourstudentsunion.ca and all applications are to be submitted through this website as well by clicking on the position you wish to apply for.

Q: Do I need to submit a resume with my application?

A: Most positions do not require resumes, any that do will indicate so on the job posting.

Q: What is the time commitment for volunteering?

A: There are varying levels of commitment for each committee which allow for different amounts of responsibility and time, so you can apply for the one that best suits you!

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