College Volunteers :: Nationwide Children's Hospital

College Volunteers

Volunteering Schedule

Application Volunteering Schedule
Apply in February Begin volunteering by April
Apply in May Begin volunteering by July
Apply in August Begin volunteering by October
Apply in November Begin volunteering by January

Nationwide Children's Hospital's College Volunteer Program

Who:  Adults, 18 years of age and older, currently enrolled in college or technical school

What:  Volunteers provide support to patients, families, and staff.  Some assignments have direct patient contact, other assignments are more supportive.  Volunteer assignments can include patient units, clinics, OT/PT, sibling clubhouse, Reach Out and Read, among others.

When:  Assignments will be on the same day/same time each week, typically 2-3 hours.  Weekend and evening positions are limited. Schedules can be changed as class schedules change each quarter/semester, provided there are openings.

Where: Primarily at the hospital’s main campus, although some assignments are available at Primary Care Centers or Close to Home locations.  Attendance is very important, so please consider transportation when considering if this is a good match for you.

Cost:  Volunteer polo shirt is $23 or vest is $23, plus tax.

Commitment: Initial commitment is 6 months.  

The application process includes:

  • Complete the online application during February, May, August or November.

  • Reference checks—Nationwide Children's will send forms to those non-family members you select

  • Information session—provide you with an overall picture of the program and specific information about available volunteer openings

  • BCI and/or FBI Background check

  • General hospital orientation (available monthly)

  • TB blood tests, provided by Nationwide Children's

  • Flu and Tdap vaccination documentation (required) 

  • Training for specific volunteer position

Application: Volunteer applications are currently closed as we have reached capacity for the quarter. We will be accepting new volunteers again in May 2018.

Please review the FAQs below. If you have additional questions, we will be happy to answer them.  


Phone: (614) 722-3635

When to Apply

We know college students are in a variety of situations, yet still want to volunteer.  Please check to see if one of these scenarios matches your situation:


Great!  You are available year-round.  Feel free to apply anytime.  Call with any questions.


Please apply in May or August.  We want to make sure you have enough time to apply, get trained, and actually volunteer.


Welcome Home!  We appreciate your desire to help.  Please apply in February as we need time to process your application and have you attend orientation.  The placement opportunity for summer college students is in our sibling Clubhouse.  This area is extremely volunteer dependent and a great opportunity for volunteers.  See information about the Clubhouse at

If you are available to volunteer past the summer, we would be happy to discuss other volunteer opportunities with you.

Other Frequently Asked Questions

I want to shadow or observe—I need those hours to apply to a professional program.  
Shadowing, observation, and internship hours are scheduled through the Education Department.  Call 614-355-0678. 

Do you have volunteer assignments in every department?  I plan on majoring in xxx and want to get experience there.
We respond to the needs of the staff when placing volunteers.  If a department has requested a volunteer, then that is where we place them.

I volunteered as a teen.  Do I need to complete another application?
No, you do not.  Check with FVS.  Depending on when you volunteered, we will let you know what we need you to do.

I have a long holiday break and I would like to volunteer at that time.
Thank you for thinking of Nationwide Children's Hospital.  We know some breaks can be 4-6 weeks or longer.  If you have volunteered with us before, contact us prior to your break and let us know your availability.  You may need to complete some paperwork.  If you have never been a volunteer, this just isn’t enough time to get through our process.  Please plan on starting at the beginning of the school year or in the summer, then we would welcome you back during your breaks.
What are the uniform and dress code requirements to volunteer?
Volunteers are required to purchase and wear a uniform while volunteering.  If financial hardship exists, arrangements can be made to get a uniform at no charge.  In addition to the uniform polo or vest, volunteers must wear their name badge, long pants (no jeans) or knee-length skirt, and closed-toe shoes.  Artificial nails, visible tattoos and facial piercings are not permitted.  
I need a letter of recommendation to apply for XXX School.  If I volunteer in an area with these professionals, can I get someone to write me a letter of recommendation?
No.  When volunteers are assigned to an area, the staff is in no way obligated or expecting to write a letter of recommendation.  These letters require an ongoing and comprehensive relationship, which will not develop as a volunteer.   Only hours of service can be provided as a record and you should have no expectation of a letter of recommendation.

Nationwide Children's Hospital
700 Children's Drive Columbus, Ohio 43205 614.722.2000