Spring Break Service Trips
Spring Break Service Trips
living and learning beyond our backyard
What are Spring Break Service Trips?
Spring Break Service Trips are week-long volunteer trips that allow Whitman students to focus on a particular social issue outside of the Walla Walla community. It is a great way to have a fun and meaningful spring break, living and learning beyond the Whitman bubble.
Participants volunteer with a primary social organization throughout the week, in addition to visiting and working with other non-profits to gain an understanding of the issues that affect the broadercommunity. Evening activities include opportunities for fun and reflection. Students also have a chance to explore the city or area they are visiting. The groups are often housed at local churches and cook most meals together.
The social issues for this year's Spring Break Service Trips are:
March 9th-16th: Relief & Rebuilding (New Orleans, LA)
March 9th-16th: Environmental Conservation (Northern CA)
March 16th-23rd: Urban Education (Portland, OR)
March 16th-23rd: Refugees & Resettlement (near Seattle, WA)
The application to particpate in a Service Trip ia available NOW!!! Follow this link to apply. They are due Friday, November 16th at 5pm. You will be notified about trip placement on Tuesday, November 27th. See below for more information about each trip.
Relief & Rebuilding: this trip is a fantastic opportunity for students who want to get involved with the effort to build and repair houses in areas that were damaged by Hurricane Katrina. Participants will gain a number of carpentry skills by working on a house, and be able to spend the week learning about restoration and rebuilding movements in the area. They will also hear first-hand accounts of the storm and understand how the people of New Orleans were able to come back together as a stronger community . Participants will also spend time learning about the New Orleans culture and lifestyle by enjoying different activities within the city.
Environmental Conservation: this trip will provide volunteer restoration services to the Humboldt County coastal environment. Our trip will also focus on discussion and reflection related to environmental education and sustainability alongside our community partner based in Humboldt County, Friends of the Dunes. Participants will explore the beautiful coast of Northern California and will be able to apply their informed experience to sustainable practices in their everyday lives in Walla Walla and their hometowns.
Urban Education: This trip will work in and beyond the classroom with a number of education-related organizations and non-profits to explore how public policy, resource allocation, pedagogy or philosophy of education and other topics impact the education system’s ability to improve students’ lives and promote an equitable society. The primary community partner for the week is The Emerson School, a public charter school in the heart of downtown Portland.
Refugees & Resettlement: this trip focuses on the struggles and challenges that refugees face in the Seattle area, as well as in a broader nationwide context. Participants will work alongside refugees through the organizations that advocate for them. In addition to helping each organization with specific service projects such as tutoring ESL classes, we will learn more from the organizations about the difficulties faced by refugees as they adjust to living in the United States. The primary community partner for the week is World Relief Seattle.
For additional information, including trip expectations, Service Trip organizations, the deposit, the collateral check, the cancellation and refund policy, the scholarship program, travel arrangements, and other questions, please check out the Spring Break Service Trip FAQ:
You can also e-mail the SBST Interns, Kenna Little and Lauren Kutler, at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions. If you would like to stop by for a chat, we have office hours in the Student Engagement Center on Mondays 9-11am, Tuesdays 2-4pm, and Fridays 2-4pm.
What are people saying about Spring Break Service Trips?
“I cannot imagine a better way that I could have spent spring break! In seven days I mastered the art of drilling and drywall, tried foods I didn’t even know people ate (alligator), learned more about Katrina, and pushed myself both physically and emotionally.”
-Kenna Little (New Orleans 2010), ‘13
“What a fantastic week! I had a lot of fun pulling up thorny blackberries, learning how to use an electric sander, and helping revitalize some parks. I also loved spending time with everyone and getting to know new friends. This was a great way to spend spring break.”
-Liam Mina (Issaquah 2010), ‘11
“Occasionally a person gets to do something that they can remember as monumental, life-changing, revolutionary, and this has been one of those moments. My service trip to New Orleans has been far more than I ever expected, and something I will not soon forget.”
-Nelson Falkenberg (New Orleans 2011), `14
“Milenko [the founder of the Pomegranate Center] has planted seeds of wisdom that will continue to blossom in years to come. Yet this experience that I’ve shared with my group of compassionate and creative people will thrive beyond this unforgettable week.”
-Ngan Huynh (Issaquah 2011), ‘13
“I feel that it really changed the way I view environmentalism, consumerism, food, and social justice. The ReBuilding Center showed us how crucial community involvement is to success while Zenger farms and CROPS inspired me to get my hands dirty and to fight for social equity. Overall, it was just great!”
-Meredith Kretzler (Portland 2011), ‘14