As we get ready for our next application deadline we wanted to share the responses to some of the most Frequently Asked Questions from our applicants.
How do I apply?
Apply to City Year online HERE.
When should I apply to City Year?
If City Year is your first choice program then you should apply as soon as possible. If you are considering City Year as well as other options, you should apply to the earliest deadline where you can make a decision amongst all of your options.
What happens after I submit my application?
City Year reviews your completed online professional reference forms and completed application. If you are selected to move to the next round, you will be invited to a full selection interview. After you have completed your interview, your application will be considered by our Selections Committee. You will receive notification regarding the committee’s decision on your application by our posted notification deadline, typically 4 weeks after each application deadline. It is very important that you provide City Year with a functional e-mail that you check regularly!
I have received an invitation to join City Year New York. What do I do to confirm my position and how long do I have to make my decision?
First, carefully consider the commitment that joining City Year requires – time wise, financially, and logistically. Talk to the different stakeholders in your life to make sure that City Year is feasible. City Year requires that an invited applicant return their letter of commitment by the deadline listed in their offer letter, typically within two weeks from the time a corps member receives their invitation. Out of fairness to all of our applicants, City Year cannot extend the response deadline, so be sure to apply to a deadline that enables you to make your best decision.
What is the time commitment for City Year?
City Year is a 10-month-long, full-time service commitment. Service starts in August and ends in June. Corps Members in New York serve Monday – Friday from the start of the school day 7:30 AM until 6:00 PM – click here to see a typical day. Throughout the year you may be required to work on the weekend or evenings. This will be communicated to Corps Members well in advance.
What exactly will I do?
When serving in the schools of New York City, you will provide one-on-one and small group tutoring to students who are sliding off track in their attendance, behavior or course work. In addition you will also serve in after-school programs to provide students with a safe, structured and engaging environment. City Year Corps Members provide the right support at the right time to help students succeed.
Do Corps Members receive training?
Corps Members go through an intensive period of Mandatory training period in August – Basic Training Academy – before they begin their in-school service. Throughout their City Year, Corps Members receive ongoing training to improve their service, learn new skills and prepare for Leadership After City Year (LACY).
Where do Corps Members serve?
City Year Corps Members serve in the South Bronx; East Harlem; East New York, Cypress Hills, Greenpoint, Long Island City and Elmhurst. City Year serves in elementary, middle and high schools within these communities. Corps members are placed in communities based on need and expect each Corps Members to serve where they are assigned. Click here to see a map of our schools.
When do I find out where I’ll be placed?
Corps Members are placed where they are most needed! To help Corps Members receive a survey to help City Year determine your preliminary community placement. Corps Members typically receive their placements from early to late summer, although not guaranteed. In some cases, City Year may need to move a Corps Members to a different community in response to changing needs of our program and the students we serve. In these instances Corps Members are contacted individually to discuss the change in location. Corps Members are placed on a particular school team by the second week of training. Corps Members work on the same team for their whole term of service.
When does City Year start? When do I need to be in New York?
Your City Year service will begin in August, however all Corps Members will need to attend a mandatory Registration day in July. Registration days are assigned by geographic region.
Does City Year provide housing? Is City Year a residential program?
No, City Year Corps Members are required to identify and secure their own housing for their term of service. City Year does not maintain any apartments from Corps Members from previous years, nor do we have connections with landlords or management companies.
However, once you have confirmed your spot with City Year you will have access to a secure website where you can communicate with other confirmed Corps Members regarding housing. You will also receive a resources, tips and tricks from the Admissions team. For example see our INFOGRAPHIC: Housing 101.
Potential landlords ask for proof of employment, but I won’t have pay stubs until three weeks into the program…what should I do?
City Year can provide you with a Proof of Volunteer Service letter to substitute for pay stubs. It verifies your enrollment in the program and outlines your stipend.
Is it possible to live on the stipend?
Yes! Your $564 bi-weekly is taxable and your actual take home pay varies depending on your withholding. As an AmeriCorps member you may also be eligible for food stamps, which can provide up to $200 a month for groceries. Corps Members typically pay $400-$700 per month in rent and benefit greatly from splitting grocery and utility costs with roommates. Keep an open mind about which neighborhoods you look in and expect to commute 60-90 minutes to get from your home to your school—this is a normal part of life in NYC! Another thing that is essential to know about NYC apartments is that they often require first and last months rent up front to secure the apartment, so start saving!
Can I work a part-time job while serving with City Year?
Some Corps Members work on the weekends or evenings, but your second job cannot conflict with your City Year hours. You may not leave service prior to 6:30PM to get to a second job.
Can I go to school part-time while I do City Year?
City Year New York’s policy on college classes permits Corps Members to take no more than two classes per week. Corps Members may not enroll in classes that require them to leave their service prior to 6:30 PM OR if there are occasional scheduled evening events that will extend service until 8 or 9pm.
Are Corps Members paid to do City Year?
Corps Members in New York receive a living stipend of $564 bi-weekly, pre-tax. It is important to consider all the benefits such as loan forbearance and the MetroCard when setting up a sample budget.
Do Corps Members get vacation or time off?
Corps Members have 10 days off for the year to use for sick days or personal days. Corps Members also receive a break around the winter holidays and some school holidays. It is important to note that a few traditional days off are actually “days on” for City Year. For example, we serve on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Under no circumstance will a Corps Member be allowed to take off more than their 10 allotted days. Doing so will result in dismissal from the program.
Do Corps Members receive health insurance? Can I stay on my parents’ insurance?
Corps Members do receive basic health coverage. Corps Members are permitted to waive the insurance and many do elect to remain on their current insurance.
Do we get a scholarship when we graduate from City Year?
All AmeriCorps members who complete 1700 hours of service and graduate from the program receive the Eli Segal Education Award, an award of $5,645 to pay off existing loans or pay for future schooling. To learn more about the Education Award visit http://www.americorps.gov/for_individuals/benefits/benefits_ed_award.asp
Can I request loan forbearance while I am serving with City Year?
AmeriCorps members enrolled in an AmeriCorps project are eligible for forbearance for most federally-backed student loans. For other types of student loans, ask your loan holder if your AmeriCorps service qualifies you for a deferment or forbearance. You will have the opportunity to request forbearance only once you have begun service and are fully enrolled in AmeriCorps, typically by mid-September. For more information about loans visit http://www.americorps.gov/for_individuals/benefits/benefits_ed_award_repayment.asp