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New Vol Leader Applications

Are you ready to make your mark on Rocky Top? New Student Orientation (NSO) is looking for a group of dedicated undergraduate students to serve as New Vol Leaders (NVLs). New Vol Leaders use their Volunteer Spirit and Big Orange pride to welcome over 5,000 New Vols and their family members to the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Orientation might look a little bit different from when you participated in your own orientation! Orientation, or as we call it, the New V.O.L. Experience is now made up of three phases: Virtual Advising, Online Pre-Orientation, and Live the Experience at Big Orange Welcome.

New Vol Leaders have to opportunity to serve as peer educators, resource guides, and role models to first-year students, transfer students, families, and guests as they transition to the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. New Vol Leaders participate in a paid leadership training in the Spring semester that will allow for growth in a number of areas including team building, public speaking, communication and interpersonal skills, problem-solving, cultural proficiency, conflict management, and confidence as a leader at the University of Tennessee. NVLs will gain hands-on experience and work as a team to collaborate with various partners to create a positive and informative atmosphere for all new Vols!

Want to learn more? Attend an information session! All information sessions will be held virtually through Zoom. Those attending will need to use their authorized UT Zoom account.

Zoom Authentication

  • For in browser, login at Tennessee.zoom.us with your NetID and password.
  • For the downloaded version of Zoom, you will sign-in by selecting the “Sign in with SSO” option. Type Tennessee (all lowercase) in the box and click continue. A prompt will appear to input your NetID and password.

For additional information, visit the OIT web page on Zoom.

Information Session Dates & Times

Zoom Link – https://tennessee.zoom.us/j/96042306865

  • January 20 (Wednesday) | 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.
  • January 21 (Thursday) | 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.
  • January 22 (Friday) | 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • January 25 (Monday) | 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.
  • January 26 (Tuesday) | 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
  • January 27 (Wednesday) | 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Application and Interview Process

  • Complete your application by January 27, 2021.
  • Following this application, students who are invited to continue in the selection process will be notified via email to sign up for a group interview. Interviews will be conducted during the week of February 1, 2021.
  • Following group interviews, students who are invited to continue in the selection process will be notified via email to sign up for an individual interview. Individual interviews will be conducted during the week of February 8, 2021.
  • Final selections will be made and communicated by February 15, 2021.


2021 New Vol Leader Position Description Apply to be a 2021 New Vol Leader!

New Leaders will have a wide variety of responsibilities centered around numerous projects during the year. This role is based on teamwork and collaboration, and each NVL will assist with various aspects of the preparation and implementation of the New V.O.L. Experience. NVLs will be assigned a portion of the below responsibilities that include, but are not limited to:

Spring Semester Hours

  • Attend and actively participate in weekly New Vol Leader staff meetings
  • Participate in a New Vol Leader weekend retreat
  • Serve on a committee with other New Vol Leaders to develop logistics for the New V.O.L. Experience

Remote Summer Hours

  • Communicate with incoming students via call, email, or text throughout the summer to answer any questions and welcome students to Rocky Top
  • Participate and assist with the organization, preparation, and implementation of various Big Orange Welcome events via Zoom meetings

Six Weeks of Big Orange Welcome

  • Participate in an extended Big Orange Welcome training
  • Serve as a mentor and role model to incoming students by displaying responsibility and maturity
  • Familiarize new students and families/guests with campus services and activities
  • Provide extraordinary customer service to all participants of Big Orange Welcome
  • Facilitate group discussions, activities, and events for new Vols
  • Present information to new students at various Big Orange Welcome events and panels
  • Assist with the implementation of large-scale Big Orange Welcome events for over 5,000 students
  • Work 40 hours during the first week of Big Orange Welcome
  • Work at least 10 hours per week during weeks 2—6 of Big Orange Welcome

General Responsibilities

  • Stay engaged with the New Vol Crew outside of designated staff meeting and retreat times to promote team building
  • Collaborate with Team Leaders, other New Vol Leaders, NSO professional staff, and Peer Mentors
  • Demonstrate the ability to be reliable, responsible, helpful, and flexible
  • Demonstrate the ability to work and communicate effectively with a diverse group of people
  • Show respect for others, and a willingness to appreciate other’s views
  • Exhibit a desire to learn about the university
  • Assist with New Student Orientation and other university initiatives that may occur throughout the New Vol Leader term

*This list is not exhaustive and other duties will be assigned

To be considered for a New Vol Leader position, each candidate must:

  • Be a full-time undergraduate student at the University of Tennessee throughout Spring 2021, Fall 2021, and Spring 2022
  • Maintain a 2.5 cumulative GPA (if below a 2.5 GPA, the applicant must speak with an NSO Staff member). GPA will be verified during the application process and throughout the New Vol Leader term
    • First-year applications must have a 3.0 minimum high school GPA
  • Be in good academic standing with the University of Tennessee and uphold the University standards of conduct through the duration of the position
  • Be able to work effectively with a diverse group of team members
  • Be available to attend and show flexibility with ALL Required Dates of Service (listed below)

  • Serve as a mentor to incoming students
  • Gain leadership opportunities and professional experiences
  • Network with university staff and fellow student leaders
  • Serve on a committee dedicated to developing the New V.O.L. Experience
  • Gain knowledge of campus resources and services
  • Select meals will be provided during Big Orange Welcome*
  • University gear including but not limited to, staff polos, nametags, T-Shirts, etc.
  • $10.00 / hour
    • The first paycheck will be received in May 2021

*Pending in-person NSO programming

Employment as a New Vol Leader begins in February 2021 and extends through February 2022.

Disclaimer: It is important to note that the format of the 2021 New V.O.L. Experience and the dates have not been finalized. This requires your flexibility, as dates are subject to change. Dates will be communicated when finalized. Please let us know of any potential conflicts in your application.

Spring 2021

  • NVL Staff Meetings: Thursdays from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm from February 18 to April 22, 2021
  • New Vol Crew Retreat: March 13—14, 2021

Summer 2021

  • Remote Summer Hours: various times throughout the summer (no more than 10 hours/week)
  • Big Orange Welcome Training: August 11—13, 2021
  • Big Orange Welcome: August 14—September 25, 2021
    • New Vol Leader schedules will be individualized and flexible once classes begin to accommodate for classes and other commitments

Fall 2021

  • New Vol Leader recruitment events

Spring 2022

  • Big Orange Welcome: 6 weeks beginning in January
  • New Vol Leader recruitment events


Frequently Asked Questions:

Big Orange Welcome kicks off when new students begin moving into their residence halls. Due to the high demand for RA duties and New Vol Leader duties during this time, students who are interested in becoming a Resident Assistant for the 2021 Fall Semester will be unable to participate in Big Orange Welcome as a New Vol Leader.

If you are currently a Resident Assistant and will not be continuing as an RA in the Fall 2021 semester, you are eligible to apply to be a New Vol Leader.

Yes! Students looking to connect with new students and facilitate their transition to the university are able and encouraged to apply to be an FYS Peer Mentor and a New Vol Leader!

New Vol Leaders connect with new students before they arrive on campus and play a key role in the first six weeks of a student’s transition. FYS Peer Mentors will remain connected to a small group of students throughout their first semester at UTK.

New Vol Leaders will be paid to participate in Spring Staff Meetings. All NVLs will receive their first paycheck in May and will continue to be paid through Big Orange Welcome.

New Vol Leaders have the opportunity to work remote, flexible hours throughout the summer! NVLs can work from anywhere, therefore, on-campus housing will not be provided. NVLs living on-campus for the Fall 2021 semester will have the opportunity to move in early, prior to Big Orange Welcome training.

New Vol Leaders will be able to hold additional employment throughout the New Vol Leader term. If you have or are planning to have a second job at any time through February 2021 to February 2022, please share this with us in your application. While NVLs will be allowed to hold additional jobs, the expectation is that you work around any New Vol Leader Required Dates of Service, listed in this job description.

Absolutely! The remote, flexible summer hours will allow all New Vol Leaders to take courses if needed.