Saint Mary's College of California - AmeriCorps VISTA Program

  • California


1928 Saint Marys Road
United States

About Us

AmeriCorps VISTA members (a.k.a. ‘VISTAs’) are highly skilled self-starters that are motivated and dedicated to their anti-poverty mission to empower individuals and communities. Believe you have what it takes? JOIN US!

Saint Mary’s College of California (SMC) is teaming up with AmeriCorps VISTA to strengthen partnerships between higher education and nonprofit/public agencies in an effort to alleviate poverty and create positive social change.

We host a yearly multi-campus program in which 17 AmeriCorps VISTA Members serve at nonprofit/public agencies partnering with SMC, Sonoma State University (SSU), Stanford University, University of San Diego (USD), and University of San Francisco (USF).

VISTAs make a year-long (52 weeks), full-time (40 hours per week) commitment to serve on specific projects at nonprofit/public agencies. They endeavor to build the organizational, administrative, and financial capacity of agencies that provide education & health services, foster economic development, and otherwise assist low-income communities.

VISTAs in our program serve 1 day per week at higher education institutions and 4 days per week at nonprofit/public agencies. While the specific responsibilities are unique, each position description has three focus areas: 

1. Capacity-Building Project

Reinforce the long-term efficacy and/or efficiency of the nonprofit/public agency with a specific sustainable project that should continue to benefit the agency after VISTA service. See below for more information on site-specific projects.

2. Campus-Community Liaison

Support and coordinate partnerships between the nonprofit/public agency and higher education institution.

3. Volunteer Infrastructure

Strengthen volunteer management infrastructure at the nonprofit/public organization agency and/or higher education institution.



  • Living Allowance $17,500 – $24,000 (dependent on County; $1,349 – $1,850 monthly)
  • $5,920 Segal AmeriCorps Education Award OR $1,800 Cash End of Service Stipend
  • Training: Pre-Service Orientation & Ongoing Web-based learning
  • Eligibility for:
  • Limited health allowance or benefits
  • Relocation Travel & Settling-In Allowances
  • Reimbursement for service-related travel
  • Federal Student Loan Forbearance OR Deferment
  • College Cost Reduction and Access Act programs (e.g. Public Service Loan Forgiveness)
  • Limited career opportunities (e.g. access to the VISTA Alumni Network)
  • Childcare: Up to $400/month per child under 13


  • $500 Grocery Stipend
  • Professional development
  • Exposure to both nonprofit/public and higher education settings


  • Four-Year College Degree
  • Previous service and leadership experience
  • Strong oral and written communication skills
  • Organized and detail-oriented
  • Knowledge and experience in working with diverse populations
  • Understanding of the mission of the higher education institution and the nonprofit organization
  • Passion and interest for community development and education
  • United States citizen, national, or legal permanent resident alien


  • Knowledge & experience with community organizing
  • Valid driver’s license and access to personal transportation


NOTE: NO College/University affiliation necessary to apply.