What is ASB?
Alternative Spartan Breaks encourages the active citizenship of its students through quality service opportunities, education about social issues, and exposure to diverse cultures and communities.
9 participants + 2 site leaders + 1 site advisor = one great week of fun and service!
Alternative Spartan Breaks encourages Michigan State students and faculty to get involved in the active citizen movement. As an organization, we hope to offer Spartans opportunities to discover and explore the active citizen inside of them by planning and implementing over 20 service trips each year. On these trips, we send groups of 12 people to a specific community where they perform at least 30 hours of service focused on a specific social issue while learning as much as possible about the subject. MSU ASB’ers have the opportunity to further learn about the world around us and how much just one person can affect it in only a week’s time. We hope this week long experience will allow our members to evaluate the meaning of direct service in their lives and to continue holding this value as they move forward.
MSU ASB sends three types of trips: international (flying), domestic (driving or flying) and weekend. Just about every expense is covered in our trip cost: transportation (van rental, gas, toll fees), food, supplies, housing, service site fees and first aid. Domestic spring and winter break trips cost $400 per participant, International trips are $500 per participant, while weekend trips cost $25. For trips that include a flight, participants are required to pay the normal trip fee in addition to the cost of their particular flight which is coordinated by the ASB program. We offer extensive fundraising and scholarship opportunities for participants in an effort to alleviate much of these trip costs.
Choosing a trip:
In order to select which trip you would like to participate in, please refer to the “Future Breakers” tab. There you can find a description of all of the trips that are planned for this year. MSU ASB does not disclose the location of trips until the kick-off party, an event we hold to allow participants to meet the other members of their group. To be an active citizen, we believe that the social issue and the service that is performed is the most important part of attending an Alternative Break. Our goal is to have a program full of people genuinely interested in doing service work for a week.
Site Leader vs. Participant:
There are multiple roles within each break. Undergraduate students can either be a participant or a site leader. Each play a vital role in the making of a great alternative break. Students who are looking for leadership opportunities are strongly encouraged to apply for a site leader position. Students who may not have the time commitment for weekly site leader meetings but still have a passion for activism are strongly encouraged to apply to be participants. No ASB experience necessary to be a site leader! The roles of each include the following:
Participant: Participate in 3 pre-trip meetings as decided upon by the site leaders. Participate in break-specific fundraiser and a pre-trip service project. Participate in week long service trip. Participate in post-trip service and a reorientation event.
Site Leader: Attend weekly site leader training meetings from 8:30 PM - 10 PM on Wednesday evenings. Plan 3 pre-trip meetings with participants. Plan break-specific fundraiser and participate in Adopt-a-Breaker. Plan pre-trip service project. Participate and be responsible for week long service trip. Plan post-trip service. Attend reorientation event. Attend site leader retreat November 5 - 6. Be main contact with service and housing sites. Be main contact for all participants on your trip.