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Alternative Spring Break Prepares For Trip

Written by on March 4, 2022

Photo courtesy of Center for Civic Engagement 

NORMAL, Ill.–With Spring break right around the corner, the Illinois State University Center for Civic Engagement is getting ready for their Alternative Spring Break trips.

Alternative Spring Break is a weeklong service opportunity during the University’s spring break in which participants travel to help meet a need in a community.

Coordinator of Alternative Spring Breaks Annie Weaver explains how the Civic Engagement Center helps volunteers get the best experience possible.

“We want to meet the students need, so when someone applies for a trip, we want them to pick the trip because it is a social issue they’re interested in and that they care about.”

Alternative Spring Break is an opportunity for students at Illinois State University to do something that may be out of their comfort zone but will allow them to discover something about themselves. Weaver explains her experience when she was in college, “It changed my life so much that it is now my job.”

Other than her own experience, while having a job through the Illinois State Civic Engagement center, she was able to see these life-changing moments for students.

“We [the Civic Engagement Department] the gamete if you will, sometimes you see that lightbulb moment happen when it is like ‘oh my gosh I have been living in my bubble, this very privileged life and wow. My mind has been open to the challenges that are happening in this community that now I can come back to my hometown community and see that for example hunger exists here too.'”

Alternative Breaks trips allow times for students to reflect on what they did each day of the journey. Weaver says that conversations have gotten students to believe in the saying “seeing is believing.”

If students at Illinois State University are interested in attending an Alternative Break trip for the summer, fall, winter, or spring semester, they are asked to go to civicengagement.illinoisstate.edu to learn more.