Service and Outreach

Princeton offers all members of its community a wide range of opportunities for volunteerism, outreach, and work in public service. The University's new Learning and Education through Service (LENS) program gives every Princeton undergraduate the opportunity to participate in a paid service internship during the summer following their first, sophomore, or junior year. In addition to the programs listed below, individual graduate and undergraduate organizations, residential colleges, eating clubs, academic departments and alumni classes promote service through various activities.

The John H. Pace, Jr. ’39 Center for Civic Engagement helps Princeton undergraduate and graduate students to learn from service by putting their values into action. With the Pace Center, students make meaningful connections through learning, experience and intentional reflection. They use their passions and interests as responsible advocates and activists to address systemic barriers to create positive change.

      They learn how to listen, to build equitable and inclusive partnerships, to recognize the historical and societal context of contemporary norms, and to value service and civic engagement as a social responsibility. With the Pace Center, students can reflect on their place in their world, recognizing both their needs and the needs of the community as they challenge themselves to address today’s most pressing societal issues. Other civic-engagement programs on campus include:

The Program for Community-Engaged Scholarship (ProCES) is an academic experiential learning program that supports collaborations between Princeton faculty, staff, students and community partners. Students learn from community-identified priorities, experience and expertise through ProCES courses spanning Princeton’s curriculum. Partners include local, national, and global nonprofit, public sector and non-governmental organizations, and grassroots community leaders. ProCES also supports student and faculty research grounded in the ethics, methods and best practices of community-engaged scholarship. ProCES program areas include: support for 60+ ProCES-designated courses each academic year; the Derian Summer Internship Program supporting collaborations between faculty, undergraduate interns and community experts; funding and support for community-engaged independent and thesis research and the Dean Hank Dobin Prize in Community-Based Independent Work; and partnership with the Pace Center to support the integration of academic and co-curricular community-based learning through the sophomore year Service Focus program.

Office of Community and Regional Affairs. Members of the Community and Regional Affairs staff participate in the creation of special events such as PorchFest, parades, workshops, symposiums and other programs enjoyed by tens of thousands of campus and community members each year. The office partners with campus and community organizations to provide service opportunities and initiatives. It also facilitates access to the Resource Recovery Program by charitable nonprofit organizations so they can acquire at no charge furniture and equipment no longer used by the University.

Novogratz Bridge Year Program. Launched in 2009, the Novogratz Bridge Year is a tuition-free program that allows incoming undergraduate students to begin their Princeton experience engaged in nine months of community-based learning abroad. During the program, Bridge Year participants collaborate with schools, environmental groups, art cooperatives, health organizations and other local institutions that are working to respond to community concerns. Participants also study the local language, live with local host families and engage in a variety of excursions and enrichment activities. Bridge Year placements are offered in Bolivia, Cambodia, Costa Rica, India, Indonesia and Senegal.

Science Outreach. Launched in 2022, Science Outreach facilitates mutually beneficial and sustainable relationships by connecting University students, faculty and postdocs with youth, school teachers, nonprofit organizations and the broader community. With the goal of increasing engagement, participation, equity and inclusion in STEM fields, Science Outreach helps K-12 students increase their awareness of and interest in STEM careers and develop STEM literacy skills by participating in hands-on activities. A Science Outreach fellows program for undergraduates is designed to build their leadership and mentoring skills as they share their science and research through community outreach and engagement.

International Internship Program. Offering summer internship opportunities in nearly 50 countries, the International Internship Program (IIP) provides students the pre-professional opportunity to complement their academic background and accomplish personal goals while living abroad. IIP interns have held positions in both public and private sectors across industries, including education, mass communications, public health and community engagement, as well as financial and research institutions.

Princeton in Service Programs. Three independent nonprofits affiliated with the University—Princeton in Asia, Princeton in Africa and Princeton in Latin America—place Princeton students and/or recent graduates in service internships and fellowships.