The University of Michigan's Alternative Spring Break is Ginsberg Center sponsored student organization that offers a community service learning experience during the traditional Spring Break of the academic calendar. Students spend the year learning about the culture and history of a particular area, community, or issue. During spring break, groups travel by road to a selected site to engage in meaningful action towards a greater understanding of root causes of relevant issues. Students participate in critical reflection and analysis of social justice issues they experience first-hand.
The program is dedicated to providing break opportunities to as many students as possible, while striving to increase community impact and student learning and aiming to help address societal problems with understanding and compassion. Critical elements of this process are recognizing community needs and assets while working in partnership with community members. Equally important is translating the experience into an understanding of the complexity and interconnectedness of social problems and making a commitment to being part of the long-term solution.
Past and present ASB sites have included delivering meals to AIDS patients in New York City, repairing homes damaged in natural disasters, engaging with urban youth in Chicago, working with the Sioux nation in South Dakota, learning about sustainable agriculture in Texas, and a community non-violence program in Detroit.
Click here to visit the University of Michigan Alternative Spring Break website.