Volunteer Applications for January 2024 are closed!
Applications will open again in autumn 2024
To learn more about becoming an anonymous volunteer, check out our FAQs below. You can also find more information about volunteering and stay up to date with all our latest news and events by following Nightline on Facebook and Instagram.
Our Public Face team would also be happy to answer any questions you may have about volunteering. You can contact us via [email protected] or through our social media accounts.
Do not email recruitment-related questions to [email protected] as this is operated by our anonymous volunteers.
How can I join Nightline?
Nightline recruits at the start of each semester; we will soon be commencing our autumn 2024 recruitment drive. You can meet Nightline’s Public Faces and ask them questions at our Freshers Week events.
Recruitment and training sessions are held at the start of each semester. Nightline encourages anyone with interest to apply; no previous experience is necessary. Please contact our administrative email address ([email protected]) or message our social media accounts with any questions.
Who can apply to Nightline?
Undergraduate and Postgraduate students are all welcome to join Nightline as listening volunteers, as long as they have 1.5 years of university left!
How often would I be volunteering?
In a typical semester, volunteers are expected to maintain an average of one nightly shift every two to two and a half weeks.
Volunteers’ shift schedules are mostly up to them, so it is usually possible (and encouraged) to plan ahead and schedule around any academic or other obligations.
Do listening volunteers stay up all night?
Volunteers are encouraged to rest on shift in the beds kept in the office. While volunteers may have a particularly quiet or busy night and are expected to wake up as required, we fully encourage resting up on shift.
Individual sheets are allocated and washed regularly, and precautionary measures are taken to ensure volunteer safety during the pandemic.
How many contacts do you get each night?
While our number of contacts varies night by night, the service is well-used, which is a big part of why volunteering as a listener can be so fulfilling.
Nightline is anonymous; so I can’t tell my friends I’m applying?
Nightline is anonymous on both sides of the service. People contacting us are anonymous and so are listening volunteers. If you are interested in applying, we ask that you be discreet as possible at both the written and interview stages. This means not telling anyone that you intend to, or have applied.
We expect volunteers to uphold this principle for the duration of their service to Nightline and after graduation.
Is training mandatory?
We know that we ask a lot of time and energy for training, but we take the quality of our service very seriously, and it is essential that all our volunteers feel fully equipped to operate our service.
Training takes place in four sessions across two weekends.
If you know in advance that you have a potential or confirmed conflict with any of the training dates or times, please mention it in your application form in the designated question.
The Recruitment and Training Officer may advise that you apply next semester instead, but we must know about any foreseeable conflicts in advance.
Can I apply more than once?
We encourage students to apply to become a listening volunteer as many times as they would like.
The recruitment process is very competitive, and many volunteers have been successful in their application following a second or third attempt. Our organisation aims to keep the number of volunteers balanced by graduating year and gender. Unfortunately, we are unable to accept all applicants as it is important that our volunteers are able to consistently sign up for shifts throughout the semester to retain their training and maintain service quality.
Please do not be discouraged if you are not accepted initially; the process is highly competitive and you may have been a very strong candidate. We are always seeking new volunteers and our numbers change with each semester, so do not hesitate to reapply the following semester.
What are you looking for in applications?
We are looking to understand why you would like to become a listening volunteer, how you think you will be able to commit to our organisation, and anything else you feel may be important or that we should know. We also recommend that applicants review the information on our website before applying. There is no key formula – do truly just be open and be yourself.
The decision process is very tricky; we try to balance across genders (as we aim to have two volunteers of different gender identities on shift each night) and graduation years, so we can sustainably run the organisation and provide the best service possible. You are welcome to ask for feedback on your application, particularly at the interview stage.
About our application and training process
There are several ways to get involved with Nightline, whether as a listening volunteer or as a member of our publicity team. Nightline strives to provide a supportive and welcoming environment for all of our volunteers while maintaining a professional service for the student community. St Andrews Nightline was awarded ‘Nightline of the Year’ in 2019 by Nightline Association which is a testament to the five principles we strictly abide by and the deep commitment our volunteers hold to providing the best service possible.
If you are interested in a non-anonymous, low-commitment role, the Nightline Publicity Team is open to all. Publicity Team volunteers help to promote Nightline through events and advertising, contributing to some of our big initiatives, such as Exam Packs and Nightline Awareness Week.
If you have any questions about the publicity team or about Nightline publicity in general, please contact our Publicity Officers, Callan O’Sullivan and Cameron Coutts, at [email protected] or message them through the St. Andrews Nightline Facebook page.
Picture by: Zoe Wollen