Spend Your Spring Break Serving Community


LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 19, 2010) – When spring break rolls around, students often think of packing up the car with a bunch of friends for a week of fun in a warm locale. UK Center for Community Outreach (CCO) Alternative Service Break (ASB) program takes your typical spring break experience to another level by adding a service component to the trip.

“Alternative Service Breaks is not only a way to get involved on UK campus, but also around the world,” Hallie Pryor, a member of the ASB leadership team, said. “ASB is not only an opportunity to improve the lives of others, but to discover yourself in a whole new way.”

The CCO partners with the national service organization Break Away and connects students with service projects in outside communities. ASB provides experiences that are educational and cultural, and promotes active citizenship among UK students, faculty and staff.

“As an international student, it was a great program for me because I learned about new cultures that I could not experience in the past,” said Jimin Lee, a 2008 ASB volunteer. “I met many people that I could not easily meet in my community, so it helped me to get wider view of people, and life.”

Involvement in Alternative Service Breaks extends throughout the school year with various fundraisers, meetings, training sessions and service events. This year there are four different trips during spring break, each focusing on a specific issue in four different locations. 

Trip availability is limited, therefore applications will be considered on a first-come first-serve basis. Trip locations for 2011 spring break include: David, Ky.; East Saint Louis, Mo.; New Orleans, La.; and the Dominican Republic.

“It’s like our motto says: ‘You’ve got to go there to know there.’ To truly know communities like David, Ky., East St. Louis, New Orleans and the Dominican Republic, you’ve got to go there,” Sarah Hermsmeier, assistant director of student involvement and adviser to the CCO, said. “Only by going there – physically, mentally, emotionally and intellectually – can we truly understand the complex issues faced by people in these places. And that’s exactly what we do.”

Applications are currently being accepted for the 2011 ASB spring break programs. Applications are available here and require a $50 deposit. Your spot will not be reserved until both your deposit and trip application are received and recognized by the ASB office. Completed applications should be turned in by 2 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 23, to the Center for Student Involvement (CSI), 106 Student Center.

For more information on ASB or other Center for Community Outreach programs, visit www.ukcco.org or connect with the CCO on Twitter by following @UKCCO.