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The Jumpstart program is working toward the day when every child in America will enter kindergarten prepared to succeed. Pepperdine houses one of the largest Jumpstart Corps in the nation, composed of nearly one hundred students each year. 

Jumpstart Student Employees

The Achievement Gap is a term that refers to disparities in educational performance amongst children who come from underserved communities versus those in more affluent communities. In low-income neighborhoods, children start Kindergarten 60% behind their peers in more affluent neighborhoods. When children start behind, they are likely to stay behind; a child not reading at grade level by the end of 3rd grade is 3x more likely to drop out of high school.

Jumpstart members serve early childhood learning centers, developing relationships with preschool children, their family members, and teachers. Students are placed on a Jumpstart team and commit to serve three hundred hours over the course of an academic year.

Get Involved

Students who want to make a difference in children's lives can apply to Jumpstart. The only requirements are a schedule that accommodates a Jumpstart session schedule, Federal or Pepperdine Work Study, and a year commitment to service.

We are currently accepting applications with a Fall start date for the 2023/2024 academic year.

Jumpstart Logo


For additional information or questions, please email:

Brief Job Description:

Jumpstart sends teams of 6-8 Pepperdine students to classrooms in the greater Los Angeles area twice a week to read and support developmentally appropriate practices in a preschool classroom in an effort to provide early literacy intervention and socio-emotional learning skills. For the entire year, corps members are paired with a small group of preschool children to teach them, but most importantly to engage in meaningful on-going service in our neighboring communities.

Together, these students implement curriculum, plan family involvement events, and serve at the learning centers. Participants earn their full work-study award and receive an additional education award from AmeriCorps.


This position is ideal for:

  • Are currently enrolled as a Pepperdine student
  • Are able to commit to work 12-15 hours per week
  • Have a passion for community service
  • Like working on teams
  • Desire to be a leader on campus
  • Are willing to learn about best practices in community development and early childhood education
  • Have a strong work ethic
  • Are looking for a year long job


Must be able to:

  • Commit to serving 300 hours of service throughout the year (fall AND spring semesters), with 45 of those hours being training
  • Participate in a background check process
  • Ability to keep a consistent schedule open throughout the academic year.
  • Qualify for Federal Work Study or Pepperdine Work Program, or willing to work with the Office of Financial Assistance to look into having this added to your financial aid package - Note: must have a FAFSA on file or willingness to submit a FAFSA
  • Consistently prepare high quality classroom materials and consistently attend and perform classroom duties and procedures.
  • Attend weekly team planning meetings in addition to scheduled Jumpstart trainings.
  • Must be available one of the following four hour blocks twice a week
    • Mon/Thur: 8am-12pm; 12pm-4pm; 2:00pm-6:00pm
    • Tue/Fri: 8am-12pm; 12pm-4pm; 2:00pm-6:00pm

* Commitment to same block schedule for Fall & Spring is preferred but not required