NYU Alumni Global Days of Service
About Global Days of Service
The NYU Alumni Global Days of Service initiative is an opportunity for alumni to make a difference by participating in community service projects across the globe. Service is a long-standing tradition at New York University, and this annual program allows our alumni community to harness its collective power and make a global impact.
Volunteer opportunities and service projects included in the NYU Alumni Global Days of Service aim to inspire action, promote social good, and motivate the alumni community to make a positive impact. Since its inception in 2017, NYU alumni and other community members have come together to make a difference in underserved communities across the globe.
NYU Alumni Global Days of Service 2017-2021 Collective Impact Highlights
Community Service Projects
Service Hours Completed
Estimated Total Economic Impact
Number of Volunteers
Food Items & Supplies Donated
Here are a few highlights from the many ways NYU alumni brought the spirit of service to their local communities:
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- NYU College of Dentistry raised over $1,200 and rode more than 1,000 miles in support of the NYU Oral Cancer Center
- NYU Student Life re-potted and moved over 100 native plants from Stuy Cove Park in preparation for site repurposing project in 2020 as part of the Give Where You Live project
- NYU Alumni Club in Japan prepared and delivered 60 onigiri (rice balls) for the homeless residents of Shibuya
- NYU Latinx Alumni Network prepared and delivered 35 meals to home bound residents in the Bronx
- NYU Tandon alumni mentored 50 students of color participating in NYU Tandon's Creativity in Engineering, Science, & Technology Program
- NYU Liberal Studies served 241 individuals lunch at the Bowery Mission
- NYU Alumni Association cleaned and prepped two acres of Washington Square Park for reseeding
- NYU Alumni Club in Argentina planted 30 trees at the Reserva Ecológica Costanera Sur with Plantarse.
- NYU Recent Alumni Network collected 20 bags of garbage and leaves and painted 60 benches near the Van Dyke Community Center in Brooklyn
- NYU Alumni Club in Austin collected 10 bags of trash from the water and marsh of Lady Bird Lake
What is the NYU Alumni Global Days of Service?
Started in 2017, the NYU Alumni Global Day of Service (GDS) is an annual volunteer engagement program that brings all NYU Alumni together to make a global impact through service in support of non-profit and charitable organizations in need.
When is the NYU Alumni Global Days of Service?
Planning for GDS 2023 will occur during the Summer, and we will update this page with the selected dates as soon as they are confirmed.
Why is the NYU Alumni Global Days of Service so long in duration?
In addition to having a greater impact, having the GDS span several weeks allows greater flexibility for our alumni clubs/groups and schools to host projects they want to support. It also allows alumni to participate in multiple projects if available in their region.
How many projects can an alumni club/group organize?
Typically, a club/group and schools organizes one service project in support of the GDS. However, some have organized up to two in order to accommodate a larger alumni base, or the group’s desire to support multiple non-profit organizations or causes.
Why are service projects organized and hosted by different alumni clubs/groups?
Service projects are organized by a variety of alumni clubs/groups as a means to connect the greater NYU alumni community towards a common goal. It also allows alumni an opportunity to engage with various alumni clubs/groups they may be interested in that is beyond the typical social or educational event. NYU schools also sponsor service projects as a way to connect alumni from their alumni community, or showcase service projects that are unique to their field of study (ie: NYU Tandon hosting a project for alumni to mentor students interested in STEM fields).
I am not based in NYC- can I still participate in the NYU Alumni Global Days of Service?
Yes! Service projects are organized by many NYU Alumni Clubs across the world.
Can alumni choose what project they participate in?
Yes. All service projects available are open to all alumni and alumni are welcome to choose any project they are interested in supporting.
Can alumni participate in a project if they are not a part of the host alumni club/group or school?
Yes! All service projects available are open to all alumni and alumni are welcome to choose any project they are interested in supporting. This is often a great opportunity for alumni to engage a club/group or school in a way that is beyond the typical social or educational event. It is not unusual for the GDS to be the first NYU event many alumni have attended – so it’s a great opportunity for clubs/schools to meet new fellow alumni.
Can my alumni club/group do a fundraiser?
Yes – if the fundraiser directly supports a cause correlated to the mission of the New York University Alumni Association (NYUAA) – such as raising funds for scholarships to directly benefit NYU students. If your school/group would like to raise money for NYU student scholarships, please connect with your staff partner.
No- if the fundraiser is to raise money that will go to another charitable organization.
Can my club/group work with a partner organization (i.e. United Way) to organize a service project?
Yes. Service projects organized for the annual GDS are most often done so in support of non-profit organizations. Please work with national or local non-profits to organize a service project, but please be reminded that monetary fundraisers to directly benefit an organization are not permitted.
Can my alumni club/group host a project that is online?
Yes – as long as the project is not collecting money to give to an organization directly. An online project held recently involved creating an Amazon Wish List for an organization that was collecting select items for individuals impacted by a natural disaster.
Is there funding to host a service project?
It is best to go with a zero cost model in the spirit of service and overall impact. It is not unusual for a club/group to charge a nominal fee should the non-profit require it. However, should a charity require the purchase of supplies in an excessive amount for a project to take place, funding can be requested and may be granted depending amount and need.
What if there is a fee associated with a service project?
Sometimes a non-profit will require a fee for a project to take place – most often to purchase supplies. If the fee is $20 or less please consider charging participants as part of the service project and overall impact (alumni are often happy to support the charity). However, if the fee is an excessive amount, please ask your staff partner if funding is available to off-set the cost. Funding will only be considered in support of a service project to occur– no social components will be funded.
Is there transportation available to a service project site?
Transportation is the responsibility of the volunteer. Should the project be a great distance and the club/group would like to coordinate car-pooling to a service project, please connect with your staff partner to include special instructions in the communication sent to alumni.
What day should I plan a service project for my club/group?
Any day between April 1 – 30, 2019. Weekend projects often have a higher participation rate, but some non-profits or organizations have availability during the week after typical work hours as well.
What details are needed to organize a service project?
Please work with your staff partner to assist, but general information that is needed includes: project name, non-profit organization name, location, date, start time, end time, sponsoring club/group, project description, project capacity, organization website, team captain name and contact info and any specific details for the project such as where volunteers meet or what they should wear.
How are NYU Alumni Global Days of Service projects advertised?
Email blasts are sent out to alumni in specific regions where service projects are taking place asking alumni to register to participate. Communications will also go out via various communication platforms such as social media, alumni newsletters, the alumni magazine and other methods.
Is there a deadline in which NYU Alumni Global Days of Service project details are due?
Please consult with your staff partner as this information changes annually depending on dates of the GDS.
Is there a deadline for alumni to register for a service project?
In some instances, registration will close once a project is at capacity. If a project is not at capacity, registration will close approximately 3-4 business days before the projects takes place in order to finalize participant lists and send out confirmation emails.
What are the responsibilities of a Team Captain?
Team Captains are an integral part of the GDS in that they are a main point person for the project and represent NYU and the host club/group. Responsibilities of a Team Captain include: connecting with charity organizer upon arrival the day of the project, checking in participants, giving participants t-shirts (if applicable), taking photos of alumni at the service project, and responding back to your staff partner with impact stats after the project is complete.
What are Impact Stats?
Impact stats are simple data points that illustrate the impact of a service project. Stats that are collected include: number of participants (only those that report for project), number of hours worked, and any unique contributions the project may have had. (ie: 25 participants worked for 3 hours and planted 500 bulbs to beautify the park).
Once the Office of Alumni Relations receives the impact stats from all projects that are completed in the name of the NYU Alumni Global Day of Service, a final impact report is created and shared to provide the impact NYU Alumni made through this collective effort. (ie: in 2018, 493 volunteers participated in 41 service projects, completed a total of 1,467 service hours and had an economic impact.
Will Team Captains receive attendance lists before the service project?
Before a project occurs, Team Captains will receive a list of registered participants as well as information on what impact stats to collect. They will also receive information on taking photos and how they can share on social media with #NYUAlumni #NYUServiceDay. When applicable, Team Captains will also receive t-shirts to hand to those who requested one (must register by specific day to receive a t-shirt).
What should participants wear for service projects?
This depends on the service project and what participants will be doing. Information on what to wear are usually included in confirmation emails. An NYU Alumni Global Days of Service t-shirt is often available to alumni (if they register early) and will be supplied the day of the project so all involved look like a team.
Overall, one should use their best judgement and dress for the task at hand (ie: long pants and closed toe shoes when doing yard work, or sneakers if they are doing a walk/run event). One should keep in mind that they are representing NYU and the club/group while participating as well.