AmeriCorps VISTA Overview

Each year, AmeriCorps VISTA offers over 8,000 opportunities for adults of all ages and backgrounds to address the root causes of poverty through a year of service. For over 50 years, VISTA members have been performing indirect service by developing new programs, raising funds, recruiting volunteers, managing projects, building capacity, and assisting families in breaking the cycle of poverty.

 VISTA Logo

For recent graduated, VISTA provides the kind of real-world experience you cant find in a typical entry job. Experienced adults are able to apply their skills and knowledge to serious social problems while discovering new strengths. In return for a year of service, each VISTA member receives a modest living stipend, health benefits, training opportunities, student loan forbearance or deferment, and on-going professional development. After a successful year of service, each VISTA receives a Segal Education Award along with a year of non-competitive eligibility for a federal government position. The greatest benefit of all however, is the chance to positively impact your community and country.

 

Current AmeriCorps VISTAs

PCRG is one of 1,100 AmeriCorps VISTA sites nationwide. Currently, we have VISTA members serving with Economic Development South, Millvale Community Library, New Sun Rising, and Work Hard Pittsburgh. In addition to our sub-sites, we have VISTA members that serve directly in the PCRG office, including a VISTA leader.

 

Canva CaleyCaley Yakemowicz

VISTA Leader

Pittsburgh, PA
Penn State University – State College, PA: Political Science & International Studies

After serving with AmeriCorps State and National, I knew I wanted to pursue a career in the nonprofit sector, but I also felt very passionate about national service. My love for national service lead me to serve a second year with AmeriCorps VISTA. I am currently serving as the VISTA Leader at PCRG where I lead a cohort of six VISTA members, each serving within the Pittsburgh community. over the course of my term, I guide members through their year of service by being a resource for them and I also help with recruitment, training, and professional development. My goal for this year is to expand and build upon the skills that I have developed during my last service term.

Serving at Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group

 

 

MaxMax Chris

Community Outreach VISTA

City, State
University of Pittsburgh – Pittsburgh, PA: Psychology

I chose VISTA out of a deep conviction that I had a responsibility to work to help make the world a better place. My goal during my year as a VISTA is to develop my work ethic and a keen sense of my career priorities while providing service to communities in need. I am the Outreach Coordinator VISTA at the Millvale Community Library, tasked with reaching out and raising awareness of the Millvale Community Library and its various programs, as well as fostering new partnerships with other local organizations and strengthening existing partnerships.

Serving at Millvale Community Library

 

 

 

JessJessica Durkin

Safety & Housing Initiatives VISTA

Corpus Christi, TX
Cal Polytechnic University – Pomona, CA: B.A. Communications

I have known about VISTA all my life: my father was a VISTA volunteer at the height of the civil rights movement in the late 1960s. After working on a labor campaign locally and getting some valuable social justice experience, I applied for a VISTA assignment in 2016 because I wanted to do national service and community organizing in the South Hills, the area I lived in for four years when I first moved to the city. My goal for the year of service is to establish relationships with groups, key stakeholders and elected officials in the Brownsville Road corridor to keep conversations going about public safety and housing across the neighborhood lines in South Pittsburgh. At my site, a typical day involved attending a neighborhood block watch meeting in Carrick, reaching out to area representatives about ground-level issues, and talking to business owners and residents.

Serving at Economic Development South

 

 

Canva RosieRosalie Evans

Outreach VISTA

Apollo, PA
Allegheny College – Meadville, PA: Communication Arts & Community and Justice Studies

I chose to partake in AmeriCorps VISTA because my personal mission for my career path aligns directly with the AmeriCorps VISTA mission to alleviate poverty through “programs that increase housing opportunities, increase economic opportunities… and expand access to technology for those living in rural and urban areas of poverty across America.” My goal for my service year is to translate my theoretical knowledge into a concrete understanding of the community development sector in Pittsburgh, and to identify where I can fit into this work in the long run. I am the Outreach VISTA at PCRG and I am working to build the capacity of our member organizations through the creation of tools and resources for communication and outreach, fundraising, leadership development, volunteer management, and operation structure.

Serving at Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group

 

 

MariaMaria Mongelluzzo

Volunteer Coordinator VISTA

Pittsbugh, PA
University of Pittsburgh – Pittsburgh, PA: Environmental Studies and Anthropology, Certificate in Public and Professional Writing

I chose VISTA because I wanted the opportunity to work with and support and organization that I care about. My Goal during my year as a VISTA is to help my organization and community grow by recruiting dedicated volunteers and establishing effective programs. I also hope to further develop skills and knowledge related to the nonprofit sector to better prepare for my future. At the Millvale Community Library, I am the Resource Development VISTA. I am in charge of recruiting and working with volunteers as well as organizing our larger volunteer events. I will also be working on several larger community projects and grants throughout my service year.

Serving at Millvale Community Library

 

 

AshleyAshley Pinamonti

Equity & Inclusion VISTA

Spring Mills, PA
Juniata College – Huntingdon, PA: B.A. International Politics and Conflict Resolution & Spanish

I chose VISTA because I wanted to learn more about the nonprofit world while working with an organization that is helping to reduce poverty throughout Pittsburgh. My goal is to make an impact in the communities we serve while learning about the field of community and economic development and developing practical, transferable skills. At New Sun Rising I am the Equity + Capacity VISTA, which means that I am working on our equity initiatives, such as supporting local community project leaders and creating resources that will help them to succeed, and also working to build New Sun Rising’s capacity through supporting our business incubation workshops, grant writing, and developing evaluation mechanisms.

Serving at New Sun Rising

 

 

WilliamWilliam Prince

Outcomes Coordinator VISTA

Elizabeth, PA
University of Pittsburgh – Pittsburgh, PA: B.A. Humanities & Certificate in Historic Preservation

I chose VISTA to gain new experiences and new approaches in economic development in an urban environment. My goal is to gain more direct urban experience and bring resources and ideas to the revitalization efforts in the Allentown neighborhood of Pittsburgh. I am tracking and measuring the impact of Work Hard Pittsburgh’s various programs including coop activities, Academy Pittsburgh, and other business efforts.

Serving at Work Hard Pittsburgh