It is once again that time of year, when the weather starts to turn cold and students begin planning and saving for their spring break extravaganzas.
“School is getting so stressful…I’m already picturing getting wasted on a beach in March,” said sophomore business major Chris Miller. “It’s going to be a good time, though it’s going to be expensive.”
Students looking to save a little money and still have a memorable experience may want to attend an informational meeting about eight alternative spring break trips. The first meeting took place Tuesday night and the second one will be held at 7 p.m. today in room 230 of the Lory Student Center.
But these are no ordinary trips. They offer students a chance to work and live in communities in need of volunteers.
“These are service-based trips. Students can do more with their spring break than beer and beaches…students should be more engaged in service overall,” said senior natural resources major and Alternative Spring Break Coordinator Nick Horras. “No one is expected to be an expert to work in the communities.”
The trips range from working on environmental projects with youth at Ocean Futures in Catalina Island, Calif. to working with the Yakama Nation in Toppenish, Wash. Chicago, Portland, Seattle and other destinations are also available.
There will be 64 openings for students, and they will be accompanied by 16 site leaders. These trips will be drug- and alcohol-free, and students must undergo an application and interview process to be selected.
“I’ve already made plans for my spring break, but this sounds like a good idea. I know a lot of people who can’t afford to go anywhere outrageous, so they may really want to look into this,” said junior life sciences open option major Lesley Moak.
The trips range in price from $350-$450, though fundraising can always help lower the expenses significantly. This will also be the third consecutive year in which these trips have been entirely student led and operated.
If interested students cannot attend the informational meeting, they can stop by the Office for Service Learning and Volunteer Programs in the student center room 27 or call Horras at 491-1682. Students can sign up for interviews, at this office, beginning on Thursday from noon to 5 p.m.
-Edited by Shandra Jordan, Colleen Buhrer and Becky Waddingham