ASB 2020 will take place the week of March 15-20, 2020. Registration will open at 12 p.m. on Dec. 2.
Alternative Spring Break (ASB) is an immersive week of hands-on service, leadership-building and relationship-building supplemented with education and reflection. For a minimal fee, students have the chance to make an impact on communities around the U.S. and learn more about the challenges and opportunities facing the country.
Under the guidance of a student site leader and a university staff member, participants travel and serve together throughout the week of spring break (Mar. 15-20). Prior to departure, students take part in team activities and meetings to get to know each other and learn about the community partners they will be working with. Participation culminates in a reflection reception in April where teams reunite and share ASB experiences, as well as share ways for continued civic engagement and community outreach.
For more information rega rding the ASB 2020 program, attend an upcoming Information Session.
See Comets in action by watching videos from ASB 2019 and previous years on the OSV's YouTube page.
ASB 2020 Trips
Location: Taos, New Mexico
Agency: Habitat for Humanity of Taos
90% of people who live in Taos can't afford a home in this tourist-dependent town. Help Habitat for Humanity of Taos create a world where everyone has a decent and affordable place to call home! Participants will enjoy endless skies and unique beauty while completing interior work on an adobe home, making mud bricks, and sorting donations at the ReStore.
Location: San Angelo, Texas
Agency: Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue
Join Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue in their mission to provide a safe and loving environment for abused, neglected or abandoned donkeys. Participants will assist in caring for adoptable donkeys as well as day-to-day basic grounds work including but not limited to habitat maintenance, construction, organization and cleanup.
Location: McAllen, Texas
This trip is only available to students currently completing the Comets to the Core requirement (UNIV 1010/2020).
Research is clear that poverty is the single greatest threat to children’s wellbeing. Poverty impedes children’s ability to learn, and can contribute to social, emotional, and behavioral problems as well as poor physical and mental health. Spend a week exploring the social, political, environmental, and economic components of poverty in South Texas while building positive relationships with children who are at risk for experiencing deep and persistent poverty.
Location: Shreveport, Louisiana
Agency: Special Olympics of Louisiana
Spend the week helping children with intellectual disabilities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy, and share their gifts through competitive sports! Participants will work with Special Olympics staff to prepare for and facilitate a swim meet for local elementary-aged children, and a track and field event for local middle and high school students. Win or lose, these inspiring young people will have an opportunity to develop their own character, make friends and find unknown wells of determination within themselves! Join the fun.
Location: Puerto Rico
Agency: Community Collaborations, Inc.
The Disaster Relief trip dates are March 14-21.
Hurricane Maria was the deadliest natural disaster to hit U.S. soil in more than a century. After the category 4 hurricane crashed into the island, the life-threatening winds and catastrophic flooding has left the local communities in complete disarray. In partnership with Community Collaborations, participants will help to repair homes affected by flood damage, restore the devastated environment, and support youth development programs while celebrating Puerto Rico culture, food, and traditions.
Location: Galveston, Texas
Agency: Galveston Bay Foundation
Interested in participating in an immersive week of outdoor activities? Join the Galveston Bay Foundation and assist to beautify and maintain the Texas coastline. Tasks may include native plant propagation, sea grass restoration, wildlife habitat improvement, dune restoration, and invasive species removal. Participants will spend their nights in tents under the stars at the Galveston Island State Park campgrounds. Everyone will have the opportunity to learn camping skills and outdoor ethics. Activities will include kayaking, fishing, skim boarding, fire building, and beach biking. This trip is offered in partnership with UREC Outdoors.
Location: Little Rock, Arkansas
Agency: Arkansas Children’s Hospital
Arkansas Children's Hospital (ACH) is one of the largest pediatric hospital in the U.S., with a Level I trauma center that serves children from birth to age 21. Join ACH in their pursuit to champion children by making them better today and healthier tomorrow! Participants will support behind-the-scenes hospital operations, organize donations and medical supplies, assist with clerical work, and lead enrichment activities with patients.
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Agency: San Antonio Food Bank
This trip is only available to students who are involved in the Greek community.
Join forces with the San Antonio Food Bank and spend the week learning and serving through their urban garden program, the Kids Café, Haven for Hope and food warehouse programs. Hands-on service and educational sessions will provide participants insight to the social issues impacting the city of San Antonio. Service tasks may include sorting food donations, serving meals, gardening, and other outreach projects. This trip is offered in partnership with Fraternity and Sorority Life.
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Agency: Community Collaborations, Inc.
Immigration is the civil rights issue of our time, affecting the lives and livelihoods of students, families, workers, and people from all walks of life. Through hands-on engagement with local organizers, participants will learn about issues of education access, economic development, food justice, and human rights, and how they intersect with immigration and justice in U.S. border communities. There will be a strong emphasis on connecting with immigrant families and understanding the collaborative community approach needed to address the issues faced by this community.
Location: Charlotte, North Carolina
Agency: Campus Pride
Fee: $350 (Waived for selected participants)
Want to help create safer and more inclusive colleges and universities across the United States? Join Campus Pride in their mission to develop, support and give “voice and action” in building future LGBTQ and ally student leaders. Participants will explore issues of privilege, discuss what it means to be an Ally, and learn about the state of higher education for LGBT+ people. Volunteers will assist with program development work, community outreach and education, as well as administrative tasks that support the Campus Pride Index. This trip is offered in partnership with the Galerstein Gender Center.
Location: Memphis, Tennessee
The story of the Bluff City showcases innovation, hope, and what Memphians call “grit and grind.” It's Elvis, FedEx, Danny Thomas, Robert Church, the Sanitation Workers Strike, Beale Street, the Yellow Fever epidemic, and Boss Crump. It's certainly not all rosy, but history and wisdom give Memphis the opportunity to improve. Participants will support youth development effort and promote literacy in an after-school setting. Come see what it’s like to live, work, and serve in Memphis, Tennessee!