Impact Year - ACR Homes | Voted a Top Workplace in MN for 6 Years! Voted #1 by Employees Twice! Skip to content


Impact Year at ACR  includes extensive training and skill development, leadership opportunities, educational enhancement through research, self-discovery, networking with peers and ACR Homes leadership, and resumé-enriching additional benefits. A commitment to serving individuals with disabilities at ACR Homes with exceptional direct patient care in a group home setting for a minimum of 10-12 months will set you up for success in future careers, education, and life.

*We will be accepting applications for Impact Year 2024-2025 from March 15th - March 25th, 2024*

Gap Year = IMPACT Year at ACR

"I'd recommend any pre-med student in their application year to apply for impact year. I received personal advice from knowledgeable mentors and peers on my personal statement, secondaries, and interview process that resulted in a much smoother application process. The opportunity to work with like minded individuals all helping each other out towards a common goal is to good to pass up!"

Ian, Impact Year 2021-2022 

"The most exciting part of impact year was being able to always have a small cohort of individuals to go along this entire journey with. Whether it be having fellow pre-meds to talk about the medical school application with, or having other peers to share our experiences working at ACR, having this small group allowed us to build friendships while experiencing new opportunities. It is always nice to have people who can relate to your own journey, and that's one of the best parts of growing alongside each other!"

-Priya, Impact Year 2021-2022

"As an aspiring Physician Assistant, I wasn’t sure how to maximize the time I had during my gap year, but being on the Impact team this year allowed me to do just that! I had the opportunity to connect with PAs through shadowing and mentorship, had received so much help and advice with the PA application process, and was surrounded by others who were in a similar stage as me which made the whole process much less daunting! The supervisors do an amazing job at creating a fun and collaborative environment for everyone to succeed! The support you get from being on the Impact team is beyond compare and I’m so grateful to have been part of this team!"

-Jucel, Impact Year 2021-2022

"Impact year was a wonderful experience because I was able to connect with other employees at ACR who were applying for professional programs and work together during the application process. I felt extremely supported by this group of individuals and it made the process of applying so much less intimidating since we were all experiencing it together. Impact year is an incredible opportunity to expand your professional goals while making a difference in the lives of the residents at ACR! The opportunities are endless and my professional skill set has increased exponentially since the beginning of impact year!"

-Megan, Impact Year 2021-2022

Join our exclusive cohort of 10!

Applications open March 15th-25th, 2024!

Benefits of an Impact Year

  • Updated, enhanced resume and application materials
  • Extensive Mock Interview Tips & Experience
  • Letter of Recommendation
  • 1:1 Mentorship from ACR alumni in the field
  • Professional networking resources
  • 1200+ hours of hands on patient care experience
  • Internship Completion
  • Research paper and presentation
  • Resident Driven Impact Project
  • Enhanced knowledge on new subject matter
  • Flexible scheduling, PTO & Benefits
  • On-call & leadership experience
  • 17.00-$23.000/hr + longevity increases 
  • Monetary Impact Award for completion
  • First Aid and CPR certifications
  • Greater than CNA level healthcare experience
  • Job/Work Experience
  • Relationships and community connections
  • Self-discovery through experience, seminars, and book studies
  • 4-5 books for personal library with deep insight into each
  • Volunteer Hours

What to Expect During an Impact Year

60+ hours of paid training on a range of topics related to high-quality care for people with disabilities, including but not limited to:


  • Training on vulnerable adults
  • Service recipient rights
  • CPR
  • First aid
  • Body systems and disease
  • Medication administration
  • Extensive medical equipment
  • Health records and documentation
  • Pharmacy procedures
  • Hygiene & bowel management
  • Seizure management
  • Cultural competence
  • Communication
  • COVID-19 protocols
  • OSHA
  • ACR Core Values
  • Behavior Management and Behavioral Interventions.
  • Full-time employment (38-40 hours/week) + additional unpaid internship tasks (approx. 38-42 hours/week combined, on average)
  • Direct Care 4 shifts/week at your base home + 1 additional "float shift" of your choice at another ACR Home, for a total of 38-40 hours/week. 
  • A cohort of peers for networking, growth opportunities, and community
  • Explore passions with internship focus and gain further academic experience and knowledge under supervision of ACR leaders.
  • Professional interactions, seminars, and workshops with ACR Homes leadership provides
  • Opportunities for networking, interviewing skills, improved communication skills, and conversation starting
  • Weekly group meetings and ongoing dialog with Core Impact Cohort
  • Journaling and individual reflection/group discussion
  • Free books with guided book studies
  • Mock interviews with Mayo Clinic, ACR Homes alumni, and ACR Homes leadership
  • Mentorship
  • Quarterly volunteer/community service – paid
  • Assistance and support with interview tips, resumé, cover letter, personal statement, etc. personalized to goals of group
  • 1,200+ hours of patient care experience
  • Leadership opportunity and on-call experience
  • Step out of your comfort zone by working with people with disabilities, learn humility, branch out to new areas currently unexperienced.
  • Ability to make a difference for people with disabilities, a group that has the potential to be underserved
  • Gain experience caring for others

“It’s competitive, an impactful experience, and great for building many of the competencies for professional school.”

-college grad pursuing medical school

“I really like that incorporates so many aspects that grad schools are looking for in their applicants in one position (volunteering, research/internship, “clinical” hours”, personal and professional development. I think it really will help people who take on the position be well-rounded for their future!”  

-pre-med college student

“I have more interest in applying for the Impact Year than any other position due to the academic and professional development benefits this program offers.”

-recent college grad pursuing PT

What to know before applying

  • You must be eligible to work at ACR Homes and meet all employment requirements
  • Impact Cohorts are limited to no more than 10 staff per cycle—space is limited.
  • Intensive interview process
  • Must be full-time week of 9/8/24 with all training completed beforehand
  • Your Impact Year will require you to step out of your comfort zone in order to maximize the potential for growth and development.
  • You will be working 38-40 hours paid weekly, with additional unpaid internship and development requirements.
  • You will be on-call 1 weekend per month September-May (timeline will be adjusted to someone new to the company)
  • Your shifts could include days, evenings, weekends, and/or overnights and includes fair share of holidays.

Did you miss the application cycle for this session?

Check out ACR's many other resume-boosting positions that start year-round!

Frequently Asked Questions

Why only a team of 10?

  • We will only be choosing 10 applicants to be part of our cohort. We want this to be an exclusive group of people eager to work hard, get meaningful experience, make an impact on the people they support, and to have ongoing dialog throughout the process with this small team.

Do I get full-time pay?

  • Yes! The pay is $17.00-$23.00/hour for day/evening/weekend direct care shifts. Those who take part but have previous years of experience at ACR would also add their longevity pay increases to that base for up to $1.00 more per hour.

Do I get paid for the book studies, meetings, etc.?

  • Pay is only for training related to direct care, direct care, and for quarterly community service/community service projects. Journaling, reflection, internship work, meetings, etc. are the unpaid elements.

Do I need to be an ACR employee to apply?

  • No, we will be selecting those that are willing and eager to meet the requirements of the program whether they are a current employee or someone coming to ACR for this specific experience.

How will scheduling work for direct care?

  • IYIs will be based at one home for 4 shifts per week throughout your Impact Year. Your other 1 shift per week will be self-scheduled up to 10 days in advance. For example, when house schedules get posted, an Impact Year Intern will go on to our scheduling site and choose their remaining 1 shift at any other home. Our goal is for each intern to visit 10 different homes during their Impact Year.

Can I stay at my base home?

  • You can stay at whatever home there is a spot for you for 4 shifts per week. You’ll get variety and new experiences for the remaining 1 shift each week.

Why do I need to be on-call?

  • IYIs will be on-call for one weekend per month for their home. This experience is invaluable in showing responsibility, problem-solving, and ability to think critically. Medical student Ally Malone gave feedback on this: “I love the idea of having these staff try being on-call. It's not only a really great experience to have to strengthen problem solving and other skills, it's a great talking point for applications. I specifically remember talking to a med school interviewer about being on call, and she said it really showed that I wanted to pursue my field since I was waking up at 3am to cover a shift for a sick staff among other incidents.”

What if I need flexibility to accommodate medical school or graduate school interviews during my Impact Year?

  • The Impact Year is meant to be busy and intensive, but to accommodate the schedules of employees who might have this arise. Additionally, since there will be a team of employees going through this experience together, it is our hope that other members of the team will pitch in to help each other out as well.

Why the emphasis on journaling?

  • Journaling and reflection is so important in order to articulate your experiences on an application and to improve story-telling ability. Having great experiences is one thing, but being able to reflect on them and talk about them when you’re asked is a completely different story. We’ll focus on reflecting on great shifts, difficult shifts, and being able to eloquently discuss these impactful experiences to use for future interviews.

Do I have to be pre-med or pursuing graduate school?

  • This program will be tailored to the needs and interests that the group choses. The candidates we are looking for are eager for self-discovery, growth, leadership opportunities, and to step out of their comfort zone regardless of what their next steps might be.

I don’t do a lot of reading. How important is the book discussion part?

  • Pretty important! It’s not uncommon for PA programs or med schools to ask you about the last book you read, or what your favorite book was. We’ll work together to discuss books that are great subject matter and that will be helpful no matter what life or career path someone wants to pursue.

I’m graduating in May and want to travel and take some time off in the summer. Is that ok?

  • Yes. The program is structured to allow time for travelling over the summer months on both ends. Full-time is required 9/11/24 through 5/31/25.

How can I take time off during my Impact Year?

  • You’ll have the ability to flexibly schedule your 1 additional shift per week, but also will accumulate paid time off. We want you to use that! As long as you’re fulfilling your obligations, the time off is yours to use!

What happens once my Impact Year is done?

  • We hope that you found you love your time at ACR and while your role as an Impact Year Intern would come to an official end, you could certainly pursue any of the other positions and opportunities that exist at ACR such as e-float, residential supervisor, residential coordinator, or as a house staff at any one of a variety of homes.