Propose a New Service Group

Have an idea for a new weekly service project or advocacy organization?

The Pace Center helps motivated students move their ideas into action and identify their place in the Princeton service landscape. Whether it’s a weekly service project working in the local community or a group of students committed to advocating for dialogue and change around a social issue, we can support the exploration and development of your new service group idea.

What type of group do you want to start?
Start by considering two existing and successful forms of service groups.

  • An Advocacy Organization is a group of students who have come together, in the spirit of civic engagement, to lead and advocate on behalf of a social issue, and which may or may not incorporate a service component and/or a community partner to move their ideas into action.
  • A Weekly Service Project is a student-led, direct service volunteer opportunity developed in response to a need identified by a local community and accessible to other students who will volunteer on a regular basis. Weekly service projects are either affiliated with the Community House or Student Volunteers Council program, and supported by their respective student leadership boards.

 Criteria for proposed service groups

  • Must align with the Pace Center mission:
    • The Pace Center makes service and civic engagement part of the Princeton student experience.
  • Must align with one or more of the Pace Center's four core values:
    • Engaged discovery; community focus; impactful programs; student leadership
  • Must be inclusive and accessible to all students.
  • Must be sustainable and have a plan for leadership transition.

How do I get started with my idea?
Email Senior Associate Director Elsie Sheidler (sheidler@princeton.edu) with a brief description of your new service group. (This description should be no more than 1-2 paragraphs.)  Be sure to include what you think still needs work or any outstanding questions you have about your idea. Your description will be shared among staff after which we will email you with next steps.

What happens next?
Once you have answered any outstanding questions, you will be asked to go back and further develop your idea or you will be encouraged to submit your fuller proposal using the New Service Group Proposal form. This will be shared with staff who will review.

What can I expect once my form is submitted?
There will be an initial determination of the group’s fit within the Pace Center program structure and/or the larger service and civic engagement. As necessary, an email with questions and/or comments to clarify your group's proposal will be sent. Based on recommended fit, proposals will be designated into one of three categories:

New Student Advocacy Organization
Proposals considered as potential new Student Organizations will be invited in for a conversation with the Pace Center operations staff.

New Weekly Service Project (under the Community House or Student Volunteers Council programs)
Proposals considered as potential Weekly Service Projects are reviewed by either the SVC student executive board, the CH student executive board, or both boards. The boards will notify the student proposer(s) and possibly suggest a meeting to find out more and if there is a fit with their program. Proposals being considered as SVC/CH Weekly Projects meet with the SVC or CH student executive board and SVC/CH Pace staff adviser.

Develop into another form of opportunity  
Student proposer(s) will be invited in for a meeting with one or more Pace Center staff advisers to discuss next steps.

After the review described above, students proposing the New Service Group will be notified by Elsie Sheidler with the recommendation on becoming a new Advocacy Organization, new Weekly Service Project associated with either Community House or SVC,  or a different type of service opportunity

What can I expect once our group is approved?

  • New Advocacy Organization presidents/chairs will need to meet with ODUS Student Government Recognition (SGR) committee for a short interview for final recognition and approval. Leaders/officers of the newly-formed advocacy organization will schedule an onboarding with the Pace Center staff adviser. As necessary, Pace Center Advocacy Organization officers will be asked to attend ODUS student organization trainings/workshops.
  • New Weekly Service Projects will be notified by the respective student executive boards of any orientation/onboarding requirements.
  • Every newly-accepted service groups, whether an Advocacy Organization or a Weekly Service Project will be asked to have leaders and members attend a Volunteer 101 workshop during the academic year.