Decree No. 24 of May 1973 provided a solid structure for the operation of the scheme. There is a Directorate Headquarters which is mainly responsible for policy matters; State Committees which execute policies of the Directorate, and recently, the Zonal Offices located at some Local Government Areas, aimed at both decentralisation of authority and the rendering of more services at the grass roots level.
This structure does not only allow the various pursuit of the scheme's objectives, it also ensures its presence at all levels of the society as well as guaranteeing that its benefits are spread across the land. The cardinal programmes of the scheme include the Orientation Course, Pimary Assignment, Community Development Services, and the Windingup Exercise.
While the Orientation Course provides opportunities for special training in national values and self reliance, the Primary Assignment which covers all facets of human activities enables the corps members to put into practices their acquired skills and knowledge as well as gain necessary experience for continuous contributions to the development of the nation after service.
The service year sees the Corps members serving in such areas as "hospitals, road construction, farming, water schemes, surveying and mapping, social and economic services, teaching, food storage and eradication of pests, rehabilitation of destitutes and the disabled, development of sports, service in all government departments and statutory corporations suitable for new graduates, development projects of local councils, the private sectors of the Nigerian economy and such undertakings and proj ects as the Government may by order determine.
"Priority is given to service in any of these under takings or projects situated within urban or rural areas of the federation" In other words, the scheme was expected to be all-embracing in its approach to the question of nation development. This explains why the three tiers of government Federal, State and Local are mandated to give it all necessary logistic support. The Community Development Services (CDS) widens the scope of the Corps members' services to the community.
In a word, in addition to Primary Assignment, the CDS enables Corps members to identify and participate in projects that are of immense socio-economic benefits to their host communities. In the process of work, Corps members come to appreciate the reality of the Nigerian society. Of course, the Winding-up Exercise which normally takes place at the end of the service year has the advantage of making the corps members to review their experience and put same to the scheme in order to enrich its pool of information for progressive planning. Definitely, a setting such as the NYSC was bound to have far reaching consequences on the life of the nation.