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Silver Cord

Current Student Information

9th Grade-Getting Started!

10th-12th Grade 

10th-12th Grade Summer Hours

About the Silver Cord Program

The Silver Cord Program began at Valley High School in the fall of 2001 as a graduation incentive program to promote a lifetime of community service. The award is a graduation award available to West Des Moines Community School (WDMCS) district seniors who volunteer a minimum of 50 hours for three or more non-profits during every year of high school.

Today, WDMCS Community Education coordinates the program district wide and over 800 students from Valley, Valley Southwoods, and Walnut Creek Campus are volunteering to earn this award. All WDMCS high school students are encouraged to participate regardless of their GPA, rigor of course study, artistic, or athletic ability.

The purpose of the Silver Cord program is to encourage volunteerism and allow students to experience the joy of giving back to the community. Volunteering can provide a constructive use of time, foster the exploration of career interests, support youth seeking employment and college admission, and give new graduates the confidence to serve in leadership roles after high school.

When can a student start volunteering to the award?

All WDMCS students are eligible to participate in the Silver Cord Program beginning the summer following eighth grade. To earn the Silver Cord Award, high school students must volunteer a minimum of 50 hours for three or more non-profits during every year of high school. The Silver Cord year runs from June 1-May 31.

Why should a student participate?

The purpose of the Silver Cord program is to encourage volunteerism and allow students to experience the joy of giving back to the community. Volunteering can provide a constructive use of time, foster the exploration of career interests, support youth seeking employment and college admission, and gives new graduates the confidence to serve in leadership roles after high school.

How does a student sign up?

Starting May 1, incoming freshman can complete the online form to set up their Silver Cord account. Once the form has been submitted, students will receive an email with information on how to log in to their online account. Students can then start submitting preapprovals if needed.

Students can start volunteering and submitting hours for credit for the next school year beginning June 1. Hours  submitted before June 1 for the next school year will be denied.

Any other students that are not incoming freshman will need to contact the Silver Cord Coordinator to sign-up.

How does a student find out about volunteer opportunities?

The best place to find out about volunteer opportunities is on the WDMCS Community Education Silver Cord preapproved webpages. All of the volunteer opportunities posted on the webpage are well suited for students aged 14-18.

Current Preapproved Activities

Approved Organizations/Opportunities (global listing)

Contact Information

Cyndi Bonus

Silver Cord Coordinator
Valley High School
3650 Woodland Avenue
West Des Moines, IA 50266
(515) 633-4365

Rosemary Brandt

Service Learning Coordinator
Valley High School
3550 Mills Civic Parkway
West Des Moines, IA 50265
(515) 633-5012