College Students And Community


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a study and insightful examination on students and volunteerism - the who, the why, and the with whom.

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College Students And Community

  1. 1. College Students and Community Service: Who, With Whom, and Why? KIMBERLEEJ. TRUDEAUAND ANN SLOAN DEVLINl Connecticut College The community service volunteer vs. nonvolunteer status of 124 college students was examined in relation to motivation, gender, extraversion-introversion,and social anxiety. Volunteers and female students were hypothesized to have higher levels of motivation to participate than were nonvolunteers and males, and to have higher levels of interest in volunteering. The data for volunteer status and gender were significant only with respect to interest in volunteering, with volunteers and females significantly more interested in volunteering than were nonvolunteers and males. Gender differences were also found for volunteering stylepreference and participation within particular volunteer groups. Volunteers were also hypothesized to have lower levels of extraversion and higher levels of social anxiety than nonvolunteers because socially anxious introverts were thought to seek the anxiety-reducing structure of a volunteer activity. This hypothesis was not supported. The importance of community serviceto students today has implications for the future of the nation (Fitch, 1987).The 1989U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (1993) reported that 28.1% of the college student population were volunteers. Students volunteer with children, with the elderly, with each other. Who are these students? Why do they volunteer? What demographics and personality characteristics describe them? With which groups and individuals do they volunteer? Volunteering, like many prosocial behaviors, is influenced by both egoistic and altruistic motivations. For example, personal growth was selected as their central life meaning by 34 university student volunteers in a service organiza- tion much more frequently than in a comparable group of 106 university student nonvolunteers (D’Braunstein & Ebersole, 1992). Intrinsic-altruistic and egoistic motives together constitute what the volunteer considers a reward- ing experience (Cnaan & Goldberg-Glen, 1991). Serow (1991) viewed this combination in a positive light, “It is noteworthy that so many students are capable of deriving satisfaction from helping those in need” (p. 556). ‘Correspondence to concerning this article should be addressed to Ann Sloan Devlin, Box 5448, Department of Psychology, Connecticut College, 270 Mohegan Avenue, New London, CT 06320-4196. 1867 Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 1996, 26, 21, pp. 1867-1888. Copyright 0 1996 by V. H. Winston & Son, Inc. All rights reserved.
  2. 2. 1868 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN Studies examining the length of commitment to a volunteer project provide information about what motivates volunteers. Rubien and Thorelli (1985) found that volunteers are less likely to leave the organization if their ego needs are satisfied (e.g., believing that what they are doing is helpful). Other studies (Miller, 1985; Wiehe & Isenhour, 1977) have discussed the importance of personal satisfaction to length of participation; volunteers want to learn new skills and to use these to benefit the organization. Sensitivity to the interests and motivations of volunteers may well affect agency recruiting efforts. Wiehe and Isenhour (1977) suggested that volunteer coordinators consider the interests and opinions of their volunteers when assigning tasks to be accomplished, as volunteers who felt well-utilized and appreciated were more likely to continue volunteering in the organization. This sensitivity to the needs of volunteers was also encouraged by Gillespie and King (1985) in order to ensure future volunteer participation, as well as program effectiveness; “training and skills” was cited as the single most important item by the majority of participants in their study. Phillips (1982) added that recruiters must describe not only the gains, but also the purpose of the program so that the volunteers would believe they were benefiting from, as well as participating in, something worthwhile. For example, year-long volun- teers in an ombudservice program cited advocating for the elderly as their motivation for participation (Nathanson & Eggleton, 1993). Among the motives for volunteerism that emerge with some frequency in the literature are those of a spiritual, altruistic, and affiliative nature. Religious motives for volunteer participation have emerged in a number of studies (Batson, Oleson, Weeks, & Healy, 1989; Fitch, 1991; Serow, 1989). Serow (1989) reported that public university students provided less service than students at institutions with a strong religious emphasis. Within the student population studied by Serow and Dreyden (1990), spiritual and religious values were positively associated with community service. Knapp and Holzberg (1964) also found that volunteers were slightly more religious, as well as more morally concerned and more compassionate. Altruism also frequently appears as a motivational force in volunteerism (Gelineau & Kantor, 1969;Gillespie & King, 1985;Wiehe & Isenhour, 1977). Cnaan and Goldberg-Glen (1991) created a 28-motive questionnaire from an extensive survey of the literatureon motivation and volunteerism. They discov- ered that an altruistic motive, “the opportunity to do something worthwhile,” was the most popular response. This altruistic response was followed by an egoistic one: “Volunteering for others makes me feel better about myself.” In a study of student volunteers, Fitch (1987) found that the highest rated motive was egoistic: “It gives me a good feelingor senseof satisfactionto help others.” The second highest motive was altruistic: “I am concerned about those less
  3. 3. COLLEGE STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY SERVICE 1869 fortunate than me.” The third motive was affiliative; people were involved in community service because of “the people [they] meet and friendships [they] make with other volunteers.” The presence of affiliation motivation in community service participants also has been observed in several studies. Volunteers have been found to desire close relationships more than nonvolunteers Koopman (as cited in Abdennur, 1987). Interviewed college students often said that they would volunteer to compensate for a lost, lacking, or distant relationship in their lives (Serow, 1991).A study of divorced elderly women who volunteered revealed that these women “felt that their involvement in social programs allowed them to fill otherwise empty, lonely hours and to once again recapture a sense of pride and purpose” (Cain, 1988, p. 568). A study of volunteer recruiting (Abrami & Perry, 1976) showed that students were positively disposed toward programs that used the persuasions of “personal growth’’and opportunities for “meaning- ful relationships.” Inquiry into the significance of affiliation motivation in a student’s decision to volunteer could have value in future recruiting attempts. Beyond the motivations of altruism and affiliation, personality charac- teristics provide another salient factor in the willingness to volunteer. A num- ber of characteristics have been examined, including extraversion-introversion. However, the results of these studies invite further exploration, as both extrav- ersion and introversion have predicted volunteering. Spitz and MacKinnon (1993) describe successful Big Brother/Big Sister volunteers (those who follow through on their commitment) as “persons suited to making new acquaintances and maintaining a positive, comfortable atmosphere within the relationships” (p. 816).Other research done within the framework of volunteering for psycho- logical research indicates that extraversion predicted volunteering (Dollinger & Leong, 1993). At the same time, students who volunteered with mental patients were found to be more introverted than the general student population (Knapp & Holzberg, 1964), and Hobfoll (1980) reports that volunteers could not be clearly distinguished from nonvolunteers in regard to personality charac- teristics associated with the “helping personality.” Further, Fox (1984) states that while there are particular social situations that distinguish the affiliative tendencies of extroverts and introverts, “extroverts do not have a stronger general need for social contact which finds expression in all types of situations and in relation to all categories of companions” (p. 9). Perhaps Snyder’s (1993) functional approach best describes the relationship between personality char- acteristics such as extraversion-introversionand volunteering in that “different people have different motivations for engaging in the same acts of volunteer- ism” (p. 256); and that different personality characteristics accompany the different motivations.
  4. 4. 1870 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN Theoretically, extroverts are sensitive to the feedback they receive from others and are interested in the social contact a group would provide (Cooper & Scalise, 1974); extroverts could thus be expected to have lower social anxiety in a group situation while introverts could be expected to experience more social anxiety. A desire to belong to a group has been shown to be inversely related to anxiety (Anant, 1967). Several studies have found a relationship between extraversion-introver- sion and anxiety (DeMan & Efraim, 1988;Teichman, 1974). Extraverts in one studytended to report high self-esteem and low trait anxiety (DeMan& Efraim, 1988).Teichman’s (1974) data indicated that when highly aroused, participants with a high predisposition for anxiety did not desire company, whereas subjects with a low predisposition for anxiety preferred to affiliate with others. Intro- verts might be likely to seek affiliation in the moderately structured setting of a volunteer organization. Perhaps introverts also seek social stimulation in the structured relationship a volunteer situation provides (Knapp & Holzberg, 1964). In particular, introverts may be attracted to a volunteer setting because it provides a safe environment in which to satisfy needs for affiliation. Thus, socially anxious introverts may find the organized activity (e.g.. tutoring, child care, meal basket preparation for AIDS patients) of a volunteer placement fulfills their affiliative needs in a manner that is tolerable in terms of social anxiety. Beyond personality characteristics, factors such as gender have been exam- ined in relationship to volunteerism. Female students were more likely to be volunteers than were male students (Fitch, 1991; Serow, 1990). Furthermore, male and female volunteers may have different volunteer group preferences. Signorella and Vegega (1984) confirmed the hypothesis that the degree of research involvement by male and female students is topic-dependent. There may well be prototypical male and female volunteer domains and volunteering style preferences. Building on the wide-ranging research examining volunteerism, the present studyexaminescollegestudentmotivation,gender,and extraversion-introversion in relation to community service. The researchers anticipate that more female students than male students will be (a) volunteers, (b) more motivated to volunteer, and (c) more interested in volunteering. It is also hypothesized that volunteers will have lower levels of extraversion and higher levels of social anxiety and social avoidance than nonvolunteers because a volunteer setting provides a safe environment for introverts to satisfy needs for affiliation. Introverts want to affiliate but fear social groups, leading to higher social anxiety; they should have higher social avoidance scores. In addition, it is predicted that volunteer style preferences and actual participation in the volun- teer groups will be related to gender.
  5. 5. COLLEGE STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY SERVICE 1871 Method Subjects Subjectswere 124studentsfrom a small liberal arts college. Of these, 66.1% (n= 82)were women, 33.1 % (n= 41) were men, and one subjectdid not specify his or her gender. Students who had volunteered on at least one occasion while in college comprised 62.1% (n = 77) of the sample; the remaining 37.9% (n = 47) of the students were nonvolunteers. Of the female students, 68.3% (n= 56) were volunteers and 31.7%(n = 26) were nonvolunteers. Of the male students, 48.8% (n = 20) were volunteers and 51.2% (n = 21) were nonvolunteers. Materials Four questionnaires were used in this study. The first scale, the Eysenck Personality Inventory (EPI; Eysenck & Eysenck, 1968), is a 54-item test that measures introversion-extraversion using a true-false format. Eysenck and Eysenck (1968) established that their scale had good test-retest (.80to .97) and split-half reliability (Spearman-Brown = .74 to .91), as well as construct and concurrent validity. Vingoe (1968) also found that the EPI had criterion and construct validity using self-ratings and the California Psychological Inventory (Gough, 1957), respectively. Any items that showed large gender differences were eliminated during the construction of the scale. Farley (1971) confirmed this when his study demonstrated that there were no significant gender differ- ences in the scores of men and women. The second instrument, containing a list of 23 motives to volunteer, is the Motives to Volunteer Scale that was composed by Cnaan and Goldberg-Glen (1991) after a thorough survey of the literature on motivation and community service.Of the original 28 motives, 22 of them loaded on one factor (Cronbach’s a = .86). “Gaining practical experience toward paid employment” was in- cluded as the 23rd item because the authors thought that this motive would be important to college students, although it did not load on Cnaan and Goldberg- Glen’s unnamed major factor. Students rated the importance of various motives to participate in commu- nity service on a 5-point Likert scale ranging from 1(not important) to 5 (very important). Cnaan and Goldberg-Glen (1991) asserted that their scale pos- sessed “pragmatic validity” because volunteers received higher scores than nonvolunteers within their sample. Using factor analysis, they found that this “unidimensional phenomenon,” as they described it, did not distinguish altru- istic volunteers from egoistic volunteers; instead, they concluded that volun- teers were motivated by both altruistic and egoistic intentions.
  6. 6. 1872 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN The third instrument is a list of 25 organizations and programs with which students might hypothetically volunteer (e.g., tutoring students, assisting hos- pital patients, helping the homeless) that was developed by the authors. Stu- dents rated (a) the extent of their interest in volunteering with each of these programs on a 5-point Likert scale ranging from 1 (not very interested) to 5 (very interested); (b) when applicable, the age group(s) with whom they would prefer working within each program (i.e., children, adolescents, adults); and (c) whether or not they had previous volunteer experience with each program. At the end of this list were eight semantic differential items repre- senting the different styles of volunteering. This list, also developed by the authors, contained the polar anchors of academicfocus versus social/personal focus, short-term (day/week) versus long term (semester or more), with train- ing versus without training, with other college students versus by oneself, one-on-one versus group situations, planned projects versus flexibility, with supervision versus independently, and morning versus evening. Using a 5-point differential, students marked the number indicating their preference. For example, students who preferred an academic focus to a personal one would circle 1; with no particular preference, they circled 3; and with a personal focus, they circled 5. On this same page, biographical information was re- quested, including gender, present class year, volunteer experience in high school, and volunteer experience in college (class year and organization). The fourth instrument is the Social Avoidance and Distress Scale (SAD), developedby Watson and Friend (1969)to measure social anxiety. This bipolar scale was reported by Watson and Friend to have (a) test-retest reliability of .68 after a month, (b) convergent validity (i.e., subjects who scored high on the SAD avoided and/or were anxious in social situations), and (c) discriminant validity (i.e., the SAD correlates -.25 with the Crowne-Marlowe Social Desir- ability Scale; Crowne & Marlowe, 1964).Leary (1991) stated that the original true-false format had been abandoned for the more reliable 5-point Likert scale (the Cronbach’s alpha coefficient is close to .90),therefore the Likert scale was employed in this study. We were unable to locate any studies that had actually used the Likert scale, and therefore were unable to acquire further documenta- tion regarding the validity of the Likert format of the SAD. Procedure The solicitation of the 150 potential subjects of this convenience sample occurred at the college’s spring semester Volunteer Fair as they left the fair, as well as in the college library foyer as students entered. All students were informed that the study would take about 15min to complete and were thanked for their participation. Prospective subjects read a consent form, then signed a
  7. 7. COLLEGE STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY SERVICE 1873 separate sheet with their name. The majority of the questionnaires were filled out at the location where the subjects received them (i.e., the fair or the library). One of the authors remained at that location to collect the completed question- naires from the subjects as they were leaving. Some completed questionnaires were mailed to the authors. A total of 150 questionnaires were distributed; 124 of these (82.7%)were returned. Of the 33 surveys distributed at the Volunteer Fair, 32 were returned-a return rate of 97.0%.Of the 117surveys distributed at the library, 92 were returned-a return rate of 78.6%.Psychology students who desired research credit wrote their campus box numbers on an indicated line at the end of the questionnaire and anonymous credit slips were put directly into their boxes by the authors. Those who wanted a summaryof the results also gave their box numbers to the authors. Results VolunteerMotivation and Interest Levels To evaluate the hypotheses that volunteers have both higher levels of motivation to participate in community service and higher levels of interest in volunteering, and that female students have significantly higher levels of these two dependent variables than do ma!sstpd,ents, a 2 x 2 (Volunteer vs. Nonvol- unteer x Gender) multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) was per- formed. A Pearson correlation indicated that there was a positive linear relationship between the levels of motivation and interest (r = .20, p < .05). There were main effects for volunteer status, Wilks’s h = .892,F(2,91) = 5.49, p < .01, and for gender, Wilks’s h =.771,F(2,91) = 1 3 . 4 8 , ~<: .001, as well as an interactionbetween volunteer status and gender, Wilks’s h = .933,F(2,91) = 3.27,p < .05, on the total interest score. Univariate analyses revealed that there was a main effect for volunteer status on the total interest score, F( 1,92) = 11.09,p < .005,but not on the total motivation score, F( 1, 92) = 0.35,p > .05. As hypothesized, volunteers were significantly more interested in volunteering (M= 77.92) than were nonvolun- teers (M = 68.43). Contrary to the hypothesis, there was no main effect of volunteer status on the total motivation scores for volunteers (M= 67.59) and nonvolunteers (M = 65.00). Examination of the data via scatterplots revealed no indication of curvilinearity. Univariate analyses of the total interest scores by gender were statistically significant, F(1,92) = 25.69, p < .001. The hypothesis that female students (M= 79.25) were significantly more interested in participating in the volunteer programs than were male students (M = 64.42) was supported. Although the motivation scores of the female students (M = 68.37) were not significantly
  8. 8. 1874 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN Table 1 Summary of Results of Simple Effects Test of Level of Interestfor Gender Volunteer Nonvolunteer F(1,92) Male 72.18 55.00 12.71** Female 80.14 77.38 ns F(1992) 4.43* 23.36** *p< .05. **p < .01. higher than the motivation scores of the males (M = 62.97), as had been predicted, the analysis approached significance, F(1, 92) = 3.68,p < .06. In addition to these main effects, there was also an interaction effect between volunteer status and gender. Univariate analyses revealed that the interaction involved the dependent variable total interest, F( 1, 92) = 5.80,p < .05. The results of the simple effects follow-up tests are shown in Table 1. Specific MotivationaI Factors To further investigate the motivations of students and the volunteer groups of interest to them, two separate orthogonal factor analyses were executed on these dependent variables. The 23 items of the Motives to Volunteer scale (Cnaan & Goldberg-Glen, 1991) were divided into factors using a principal components analysis. Although seven individual factors with eigenvalues greater than 1.OO were identified, an examination of those eigenvalues with a scree test suggested five major factors, and it was thus decided to rotate five factors. When the principal components analysis was rerun to produce five factors, the fifth factor was found to have only two items on it and, as both of these items had factor loading scores less than 0.30, this factor was also dropped and the analysis was rerun to produce four factors. These remaining four factors had eigenvalues of above 1SO.The chosen cut off point for factor loadings was 0.45 because it created a more coherent structure for each factor. The three items that did not load 0.45 on any factor (“opportunity to work with different age groups”; “opportunity for relationships”; and “people in my community volunteer”) were dropped from the respective factors. Two more items were dropped because they loaded highly (0.45 or better) on two factors (“excellent educational experience” and “provides challenging activities”). The first factor, labeled “social obligation,” included five items that sug- gested an institutional commitment to volunteerism: “It is God’s expectation”;
  9. 9. COLLEGE STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY SERVICE 1875 “agency can provide more for less”; “continuing a family tradition”; “agency is prestigious”; and “previous contact with professionals in this agency” (Cronbach’s a = .73). The second factor, labeled “experience-seeking,’’ in- cluded four items that suggested the desire to gain and share experience: “able to relate to clients due to my own similar experience”; “experience in providing service”; “my employerlschool expect it”; and “gaining practical experience toward paid employment”(Cronbach’sa = .70).The third factor, labeled‘taltru- istic intention,” included four items: “opportunity to do something worth- while”; “it creates a better society”; “opportunity to return my good fortune”; and “opportunity to change injustices” (Cronbach’s a =.66). The fourth factor, labeled “personal motivation,” included five items that expressed reasons that people help others while helping themselves: “makes me feel better about myself’; “it improves my attitude on my own life situation”; “opportu- nity to vary my activities”; “broadening my horizons”; and “nothing else to do with my time” (Cronbach’s a =.70; see Table 2 for factor loadings). To examine the relationship between volunteer status and gender and the importance of the individual factor motives to volunteer, a 2 x 2 (Volunteer Status x Gender) MANOVA was conducted on the unitized factor scores of each of these factors. Although there were no interaction effects, Wilks’s h = .940, F(4, 107)= 1 . 7 0 , ~> .05, or main effects for volunteer status, Wilks’s h = .938, F(4, 107)= 1 . 7 6 , ~< .05, there was a main effect for gender, Wilks’s h = .913, F(4, 107) = 2 . 5 7 , ~< .05. Univariate analyses demonstrated that female students (M= 5.94) were significantly more motivated by the altruistic inten- tion factor than were male students (M= 14.08),F(1, 110)= 8 . 5 0 , ~< .005. Volunteer Group Types An orthogonal principal cornponents analysis was executed on the 25 volunteer groups. Eight factors with eigenvalues of above 1.OO were identified. An examination of those eigenvalues with the scree test suggested the analysis be rerun with five factors. The remaining factors had eigenvalues of above 1.45. The 0.45 item factor loading score was chosen as an inclusion criterion, as before, to create a more coherent factor structure. One item that did not load 0.45 on any factor was dropped from further analyses (“preschool children [daycare]”). One item loaded highly on two factors and was also dropped (“battered women”). The first factor, labeled the “socially discriminated against” group included six items: “substance abusers”; “survivors of sexual abuselrape”;“teen mothers”; “juveniledelinquents”; “bilgay teens”; and “prison inmates” (Cronbach’sa = .77). The second factor, labeledthe “medical-disaster relief,” group includedfour items: “cancerpatients”; “AIDS patients”; “hospital
  10. 10. 1876 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN Table 2 VarimaxRotated Factor Loadings of Motives to Volunteer and Percentage of Variance Motive % of Loading variance Social obligation Agency is prestigious. Agency can provide more for less. It is God’s expectation. Continuing a family tradition. Previous contact with professionals in this agency Gaining practical experience toward paid My employer/school expects it. Experience in providing service. Able to relate to clients due to my own similar Experience seeking employment. experience. Altruistic intention Opportunity to do something worthwhile. It creates a better society. Opportunity to change injustices. Opportunity to return my good fortune. Makes me feel better about myself. It improves my attitude on my own life situation. Opportunity to vary my activities. Broadening my horizons. Personal motivation .69 .68 .61 .59 .57 .83 .67 .57 .49 .69 .69 .61 .50 .67 .66 .52 .47 24.7 10.3 7.6 6.9 patients”; and “disaster relief’ (Cronbach’s a = .74). The third factor, labeled the “teaching-mentoring” group, included five items: “the illiterate”; “teach for America”; “tutoring students”; “bilingual students”; and “Big BrotherdSis- ters” (Cronbach’s a = .74). The fourth factor, labeled the “special needs” group, included five items: “mentally retarded”; “elderly”; “homeless (soup kitchens)”; “mentally ill”; and “Habitat for Humanity” (Cronbach’s a = .74).
  11. 11. COLLEGE STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY SERVICE 1877 The fifth factor, labeled the “social causes-sports” group, included three items: “political groups”; “environmental groups”; and “Sports teams (coaching)” (Cronbach’s a =.44; see Table 3 for factor loadings). The multivariate analyses conducted with the unitized scores of these five interest factors by volunteer status and gender produced no significant interac- tion, Wilks’s h = .938,F(5,95)= 1 . 2 6 , ~> .05, nor significant main effects for volunteer status,Wilks’s h = .918,F(5,95) = 1 . 7 1 , ~> .05. However, there was a main effect for gender on the interest factors, Wilks’s h = .651, F(5, 95) = 1 0 . 1 6 , ~< .001. Univariate analyses of variance reiterated that female students were more interested in volunteering with the different groups than were male students in four of the five factor types (see Table 4 for detailed statistics). Additional GenderDifferences The hypothesis that gender differences exist in the types of activities in which students actually volunteered was tested using a series of chi-squares, one for each of the 25 provided programs, with two additions. Women’s groups and youth groups were also included because several students had listed these among the groups with which they volunteered. To guard against the possibility of Type I error, the Bonferroni test was used to set the significance level at .002 (.05/27). One significant difference emerged. Analyses revealed that female students had volunteered with preschool children, ~ ~ ( 1 ,N = 123) = 12.66,p < .002, significantly more than had male students. Gender differences also were anticipated with respect to the styles of volunteering preferred by the participants. The possibility of gender differ- ences was tested with a MANOVA using the eight volunteering styles as the dependent variables. There was a main effect for gender, Wilks’s h = ,805, F(8, 110) = 3.33, p < .005. Univariate analyses indicated that males and females differed with respect to two of the eight volunteering styles: how long subjects preferred to volunteer (short term, consisting of a day or week com- mitment, or long term, lasting for a semester of more) and whether or not they preferred training within the organization. Female students preferred long-term commitments ( M = 3.70) more than did male students (M= 2.90), F(1, 117)= 10.62,~< .005, and male students preferred to volunteer without training (M= 3.18) more than did female students (M = 2.26), F( 1, 117) = 13.40,p < .OO 1 (see Table 5 for means and standard deviations of styles). Extraversionand Social Anxiety Preliminary analyses revealed that the mean and standard deviation of the extraversion-introversion scores of the current study were 12.61 and 4.01,
  12. 12. 1878 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN Table 3 VarirnaxRotated Factor Loadings of Interest in VolunteerPrograms Factor Loading % of variance Socially discriminated against 25.9 Substance abusers .73 Survivors of sexual abuse .70 Teen mothers .64 Juvenile delinquents .58 Prison inmates .52 Bi/gay teens .57 Medical-disaster relief Cancer patients AIDS patients Hospital patients Disaster relief Teaching-mentoring The illiterate Teach for America Tutoring students Bilingual students Big BrotherdBig Sisters Special needs Mentally retarded Elderly Homeless (soup kitchens) Mentally ill Habitat for Humanity .76 .65 .59 .57 8.7 6.9 .76 .74 .73 .62 .49 6.6 .78 .72 .59 .53 .49 Social causes-sports 6.0 Political groups .73 Environmental groups .55 Sports teams .53
  13. 13. COLLEGE STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY SERVICE 1879 Table 4 Means and F Statistics of Interest Factorsfor Gender Gender Factor Females Males F(L99) Socially discriminated against 18.68 13.52 24.81**** Medical-disaster relief 13.41 9.86 25.81**** Teaching-mentoring 20.35 17.46 8.22** Special needs 15.40 13.11 ns Social causes-sports 7.26 9.26 ns **p< .01. ****p< .001. respectively.The mean and standard deviation of Eysenck and Eysenck's (1968) original sample of college students (N = 1,003) were 13.10 and 4.10, respec- tively. The mean of the SAD scores was 38.55 with a standard deviation of 20.13. A Pearson correlation revealed that there was a negative linear correla- tion between the levels of extraversion and social anxiety (r = -.55,p < .Ol). To evaluate the hypothesis that volunteers have lower levels of extraversion and higherlevelsof socialanxietythannonvolunteers,a MANOVA wasperformed on these two dependent variables. The hypothesis was not supported, Wilks's h = .976, F(2, 121)= 1 . 5 0 , ~> .05; there were no significant main effects for extraversion,F(l, 122)= 0 . 2 0 , ~>.05,or socialanxiety,F(1,122)= 2 . 7 2 , ~> .05. A standard regression was performed to identify whether extraversion and/or social anxiety in part predict total level of volunteer participation (operationalized as the number of different groups with whom one had volun- teered). Extraversion and social anxiety were regressed on the total number of volunteer programs in which the students participated. The Pearson correla- tions between extraversion and the number of volunteer programs was not significant (r = .O 1,p > .05) while the correlation between social anxiety and the number of volunteer programs was significant (r = -.27,p < .01). Consistent with the correlational analysis, the regression analysis showed that the level of extraversion did not contribute significantly to the model (p = -.21, p > .05), but that social anxiety explained 10%of the variance in level of participation in volunteer programs (R2= .lo), F(2, 101)= 5 . 7 0 , ~< .01; p = -.39, p < .01. The b-weight score (-.06) indicates that as social anxiety increases, the level of volunteer participation decreases.
  14. 14. 1880 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN Table 5 Means and Standard Deviations of Semantic Differential Styles of Volunteeringfor Gender Gender - Style of volunteering Males Females Academic focus vs. social/personal focus M SD Short-term vs. long-term M SD With training vs. without training A4 SD With other college students vs. by oneself M SD One on one vs. group situations M SD Planned projects vs. flexibility A4 SD M SD With supervision vs. independently Morning vs. evening M SD 3.59 0.88 2.90 1.09 3.18 1.40 2.95 1.30 2.64 1.31 3.33 1.40 3.56 1.29 3.26 1.31 3.50 1.09 3.70*** 1.40 2.26**** 1.23 3.30 1.22 2.38 1.16 3.44 1.17 3.41 1.16 3.00 1.26 Note. The above means correspond to a semantic differential scale on which 1 indicates a strong preference for the first item through 5 which indicates a strong preference for the item opposite to it. ***p< .005. ****p< .001.
  15. 15. COLLEGE STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY SERVICE 1881 Table 6 Frequency of Participation in VolunteerPrograms in Descending Order No. of students Program (N= 124) No. of students Program (N= 124) Preschool children Tutoring students Homeless (soup kitchens) Elderly Sports teams (coaching) Environmental groups Hospital patients Bilingual students Political groups Mentally retarded Mentally ill Habitat for Humanity Big Brothers/Big Sisters Juvenile delinquents 72 70 46 44 38 38 31 30 29 28 27 24 24 15 Survivors of sexual abuse Substance abusers Youth groups The illiterate Cancer patients Battered women AIDS patients Bi/gay teens Prison inmates Disaster relief Teach for America Teen mothers Women’s groups 14 13 12 12 10 9 8 7 6 6 5 5 4 Participant Characteristics Chi-square analyses provided information about the participant pool. Sig- nificantly more female students (n = 56) than male students (n = 20) were volunteers, x2(1,N = 123)=4 . 4 1 , ~< .05.Significantly more students who had volunteered in high school also volunteered in college, x2(1, N = 124) = 8.61, p < .005.Finally, significantly more juniors and seniors volunteered than did not, x2(3,N= 123)= 1 8 . 3 5 , ~< .0005. Frequency analyses or means provided information about students’ volun- teer program participation in high school and college, their motivation to volunteer with particular programs, and the extent to which the students, overall, were motivated by each of the items on the Motives to Volunteer Scale (Cnaan & Goldberg-Glen, 1991). As illustrated in Table 6, these analyses revealed that of the 124 subjects, 58.1% (n = 72) had volunteered with pre- school children, 56.5% (n= 70) of the subjects had tutored students, 37.1% (n = 46) of the subjects had volunteered to help the homeless, and 35.5% (n = 44)
  16. 16. 1882 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN Table 7 Means and Standard Deviations of Interest in VolunteerPrograms in Descending Order Program M SD Tutoring students Big Brothers/Sisters Homeless Preschool children AIDS patients Teach for America Battered women Habitat for Humanity Survivors of abuse The illiterate Cancer patients Environmental groups Hospital patients Disaster relief Elderly Bilingual students Juvenile delinquents Teen mothers Mentally ill Substance abusers Sports teams (coaching) Prison inmates Mentally retarded Bi/gay teens Political groups 3.65 3.63 3.45 3.37 3.26 3.21 3.18 3.16 3.15 3.13 3.12 3.05 3.03 3.03 2.94 2.93 2.90 2.84 2.76 2.75 2.71 2.68 2.67 2.65 2.53 1.46 1.14 1.24 1.46 1.32 1.33 1.37 1.32 1.44 1.23 1.16 1.34 1.21 1.26 1.21 1.44 1.21 1.30 1.43 1.30 1.58 1.28 1.26 1.24 1.45 Note. The above means indicate level of interest, 1 = not interested to 5 = very interested.
  17. 17. COLLEGE STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY SERVICE 1883 Table 8 Means and Standard Deviations of Motives to Volunteer Motive M SD Opportunity to do something worthwhile. It creates a better society. Makes me feel better about myself. Broadening my horizons. Excellent educational experience. Opportunity to change injustices. Opportunity to return my good fortune. Provides challenging activities. It improves my attitude on my own life situation. Experience in providing service. Opportunity to vary my activities. Opportunity for relationships. Opportunity to work with different age groups. Gaining practical experience toward paid employment. Able to relate to clients due to my own similar experience. Agency can provide more for less. Previous contact with professional in this agency. It is God’s expectation. My employerlschool expects it. Nothing else to do with my time. 4.29 4.02 3.92 3.86 3.81 3.57 3.50 3.49 3.49 3.44 3.21 3.21 3.10 3.06 2.80 2.47 1.94 1.73 1.71 1.58 0.88 1.04 1.02 0.98 1.01 1.16 1.11 1.05 1.13 1.16 1.09 1.16 1.23 1.34 1.29 1.14 1.12 1.15 1.01 0.98 Note. The above means indicate how important each motive would be when deciding whether or not to participate in community service, 1 = not important to 5 = very important. of the subjects had volunteered with the elderly (see Table 6 for frequencies of participation in the volunteer programs). With respect to interest in participating in the volunteer programs, student tutors (M= 3.65), Big BrothedSisters (M= 3.63), the homeless (M= 3.45), and preschool children (M=3.37) received the highest means of interest out of a possible 5.00 signifying greatest interest. The elderly category (M= 2.94), which was fourth in actual participation, ranked 15th in interest on the list of 25 (see Table 7 for means and standard deviations of interest in the volunteer programs). Of the possible motives, the participants in this sample were most
  18. 18. 1884 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN motivated by “opportunity to do something worthwhile” ( M = 4.29), “it creates a better society” ( M = 4.02), “makes me feel better about myself’ ( M = 3.92), and “broadening my horizons” (A4= 3.86; see Table 8 for means and standard deviations of motives to volunteer). Discussion Human service experience is a valuable commodity in this economy because the economy is “undergoing a shift from goods producingto service producing” (Nathanson& Eggleton, 1993,p. 108).The majority of the studentsin the present study are active in this social change; they volunteer. Students who volunteered in high school also volunteer in college, suggestingthat volunteerism is affected by psychological and social variables, not simply situational circumstances. Contrary to expectation, levels of extraversion and social anxiety did not predict volunteerism in this study. These results contradict those by Carlson and Levy (1973), who found that volunteers were predominantly extraverted; as well as the results of Knapp and Holzberg (1964), who found that volunteers were predominantly introverted. The results of the present study suggest that volunteer populations are diverse, including individuals with varying levels of extraversion and social anxiety. Snyder’s (1993) functional analysis of volun- teerism may best explain the varying levels of extraversion and social anxiety and avoidance found in this study. The similarity between the statistics of the original sample tested with the EPI (Eysenck & Eysenck, 1968)and the present sample further suggests that personality characteristics themselves are rela- tively unaffected by generational pressures; students today appear to be no more extraverted or introverted than they were in 1968. It is important to note that the levelsof extraversionand social anxietyare not independent.The significantnegative linear relationshipbetween these variables demonstrates that extraverted subjects reported less social anxiety, and intro- verted subjects reported more social anxiety. Though these dimensions had no effect on volunteerstatusin the present study,this significantnegativecorrelation indicates that these constructs have a conceptual relationshipthat may be further explored.A problemwiththepresent studyisthat it didnot measurethe affiliation motivation through a theoretical mixture of extraversion and social anxiety. If one tested the need for affiliation and the number of hours one devotes to com- munity service, this might also provide insight into the extent that affiliation motivationaffectsthe activecommunityserviceparticipationof a collegestudent. The positive linear correlationbetweenmotivation to volunteerand interest in volunteeringwith the various programs also merits further study, as multivariate analyses of these variables did not reveal consistent group differences. While volunteers in the present study were more interested in volunteering than were
  19. 19. COLLEGE STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY SERVICE 1885 nonvolunteers, consistent with Hobfoll’s (1980) discussion of social interest motivation for volunteer participation, volunteers in the present study were not significantly more motivated than were nonvolunteers, which contradicts Cnaan and Goldberg-Glen’s (1991) results. Either students have learned what the socially accepted motives to volunteer are and, therefore, simply reproduced them as responses on the questionnaire, or nonvolunteers are equally motivated but have other obligations that precludetheir ability to participate in community service.What this studyshowsis that volunteersare distinguishablefromnonvol- unteersin that they are more interestedin participating in the availableprograms. The results also revealed anticipated gender differences. Just as Signorella and Vegega (1984) reported gender differences in volunteerism for particular research topics, gender differences appear with regard to volunteering for a particular program. Notably, significantly more female students have volun- teered with preschool children than have male students. MANOVA indicated that female students are also more motivated by the altruistic factor than are male students. This evidence conflicts with an earlier review of research that females are not more altruistic (Maccoby & Jacklin, 1974). In the authors’ view, it is not surprising that women had nearly significantly higher levels of motivation to volunteer and that women are more interested in volunteering. Female students may be more affiliative than male students, and thus more interested in participating with the variety of populations represented by the many volunteer programs. The programs on the survey may also appeal more to women than to men, as female students are more interested in volunteering with the programs represented in four of the five factors, whereas men are more interested in volunteering only with the factor containing “political groups,” “environmental groups,” and “sports teams.” While there are volunteer oppor- tunities in which male students are more interested than are females, these opportunities tend to mirror stereotypical interpretations of male interest. The students at this small liberal arts college volunteer. They volunteer predominantly with preschool children, with students who require tutoring, with the homeless, and with the elderly. Perhaps these are the more popular volunteer programs because youth, education, homelessness, and old age are concerns of contemporary society.These programs might also attract the largest number of volunteers because they provide students with more opportunities, both in number and convenience. As women’s centers, AIDS programs, and environmental projects receive more funding and, consequently, expand their services, more opportunities to volunteer with these groups should develop. The 10 volunteer programs in which students are most interested (but not necessarilywherethey actuallyvolunteered)involvedopportunitiestoactastutors or mentors; as counselors for AIDS patients, battered women, and survivors of sexual abuse; and as carpenters and food providers for the homeless. Students
  20. 20. 1886 TRUDEAU AND DEVLIN are least interested in volunteering with political groups. This pattern might indicate a growing concern for humanity, above policy, among students. Of the 23 motives of the Motives to Volunteer Scale (Cnaan & Goldberg- Glen, 1991), the 7 that received the highest ratings from the students were as follows: the first two and two others loaded on the factor labeled altruistic, two loaded on the personal motivation factor, and one loaded on the experience- seeking factor. These results show that students recognize and appreciate community service more as a way of giving back to the community than as a way of gaining the benefits of personal satisfaction and practical experience. These results reveal that altruism is a popular motivation for participation in community service, which corroborates findings reported by Gelineau and Kantor (1969), Gillespie and King (1985), and Wiehe and Isenhour (1977). College students and community service: who, with whom, and why? The findings of this study are significant. More women than men are volunteers. Women are more interested in volunteering than are men. Women volunteer more with preschool children than do men. Women are more motivated to volunteer by altruistic motives than are men. Future research could explore which characteristicsofwomen and men seem to predispose them to participate in community service. This might be accomplished, in part, by comparing gender role orientation to service participation. References Abdennur, A. (Ed.). (1987). The conflict resolution syndrome: Volunteerism, violence, and beyond. Ottawa, Canada: University of Ottawa Press. Abrami, P. C., & Perry, R. P. (1976). Recruitment of college volunteers for community service organizations using the lecture method. Journal of Community Psychology, 4,369-377. Anant, S . S. (1967). Belongingness, anxiety, and self-sufficiency: Pilot study. Psychological Reports, 20, 1137-1138. Batson, C. D., Oleson, K. C., Weeks, J. L., & Healy, S. P. (1989). Religious prosocial motivation: Is it altruistic or egoistic? Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 57,873-884. Cain, B. S. (1988). Divorce among elderly women: A growing social phe- nomenon. Special issue: Life transitions in the elderly. Social Casework, Carlson, R., & Levy, N. (1973). Studies of Jungian typology: I. Memory, social perception, and social action. Journal of Personality, 41, 559-576. Cnaan,R. A., & Goldberg-Glen,R. S. (1991).Measuringmotivationto volunteer in human services. Special issue: Methods for research and intervention with organizations. Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 27,269-284. 69, 563-568.
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