By Mariel | March 18, 2012
This past week to the average Canisius or college student was spring break. Aka a time to, if you’re loaded and intent on living the “typical” college kid dream, spend your days soaking up the sun in some exotic location, but more accurately, to lie around on your couch and get caught up on all of the TV you missed the past few months.
For some students however, this spring break was an experience of a lifetime and an amazing opportunity to soak up the sun while making friends and affecting real changes in communities on the East Coast. How can you possibly fit all of that into one week? Pretty easily actually, if you were one of the participants on Alternative Spring Break, a program that sent students to one of three different sites; Lantz Farms, Appalachian Catholic Workers, and Harper’s Ferry, which was the site that I visited.
If you are considering participating in a service trip during your time as a Canisius student, I would highly recommend Alternative Spring Break. Not only did I make amazing friends and laugh harder than I have in months, but I also got tan, got scratched up and bruised, but also got great muscles and a greater sense of community and solidarity than I have through any other program at Canisius. A lot of the things we do as undergrads are to serve ourselves, and rightly so. We have papers to write, tests to take, labs to write up, grad school and lives to worry about. All of this attention to ourselves might seem like its warranted but sometimes you need to step back and look at the bigger picture. How much does that one test matter in the grand scheme of the universe? Not much. Compared to the goal of hiking the entirety of the Appalachian Trail; a goal I renewed for myself this past week, that one essay seems kind of trivial.
So when you’re considering your next break, whether it be winter or spring break, consider what you’re actually going to be doing and what you could be doing, and consider a service trip. I know that it will be worth your while.