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University of Colorado Denver

Office of Student Life
 

Alternative Break


What is Alternative Break?

 Every semester, the Office of Student Life coordinates an "extended" community service opportunity for students at CU Denver. Students travel out of state to explore social and cultural issues by volunteering with various community-based organizations. These trips are led by students and much of the expenses are covered. Flights, transportation, food and lodging are included are included on these trips.

Participation in the Alternative Break program will challenge and inform your understanding of relevant community and social justice issues in our society. The selection criteria is aimed at understanding your level of teamwork, interest in social issue, leadership, diversity and potential for growth.​​

CU Denver Alternative Breaks


Mission Statement

The Alternative Break program exposes students to complex social and cultural issues through direct service, experiential learning, group discussion, and personal reflection. The vision is to transform students into advocates of social change on issues affecting our communities.​

Benefits of Participating in the Alternative Breaks Program

There are countless reasons to take part in this unique opportunity. 

·      Diversity & Social Justice Education: Students experience life and people in a community different from their own and collaborate with local people to directly confront social issues.
·      Substance Free Environment: Students have a chance to spend a week in an alcohol and substance free environment, providing an intentional and safe environment.
·      Self Discovery: While learning about a diverse array of social issues, students will also learn about themselves and what it means to work in a team.
·      New concept of community: Often, we think we know what the community needs without consulting the members of the community.  Break programs allow us to examine our campus-centered focus in a positive way.
·      Building Bridges: Students have the opportunity to meet and network with other CU students as well as professionals to discuss and learn from one another about cultural, social and environmental issues.
·      Travel experience: Students will see parts of the United States that are beyond the Forbes travel sights.
·      Personal satisfaction: One of the greatest feelings in the world is the ability to look back over a week of hard work knowing that you efforts have made a difference.
·      New friendships: Participants often make strong new friendships not only with other participants, but also with members of the community in which you are serving.  


 
 
 
 

International Alternative Break

Guate​mala 2014 – May 19th-28th


Applications are now closed.


 
We are excited to announce that our Alternative Break program will be traveling to Guatemala this upcoming May for an international service trip! Applications will open on February 28th at 9am and close on Friday, March 7th at 11:59pm. The online application will be open for a full week and each application will be carefully reviewed by a selection committee. There is no need to rush through the application. We want you to spend time answering the questions and reflect on why this experience is right for you. All students must have a valid passport for this trip.


 

The goals of the trip are to:

1.  Participate in service projects that impact the community.
2.  Develop community amongst the student participants.
3.  Have new and exciting experiences in another part of the world.


Students are expected to participate in all group activities. Participants will not be allowed to engage in activities outside of the group agenda. An advisor must be present at all activities. The Alternative Break experience will not count toward academic credit.


 

Service Areas

The group will explore issues related to agriculture, environmental sustainability, education and youth

Expenses 

Total cost for students participating in the International Alternative Break is $1,050.00. This cost will cover all expenses including: airfare, lodging, meals and transportation in Guatemala. Students are responsible for transportation to and from Denver International Airport. The total amount can be split in two installments. The first payment is due at the first group meeting on April 4th (see below). Due to airline regulations, we will not be able to refund any money after the first meeting.

 

Important Dates

Applications will open on Friday, February 28th at 9am and close on Friday, March 7th at 11:59pm. Notifications will be sent out to selected participants on March 15th. All Students are required to attend mandatory group meetings on the following dates, NO EXCEPTIONS.

 

Friday, April 4th ($ 525) at 2pm in Tivoli

Friday, April 18th ($ 525)at 2pm in Tivoli

Friday, May 2nd at 2pm in Tivoli

Friday, May 16th at 2pm in Tivoli

 
 

Monday, May 19th – Leave Denver and arrive in Guatemala

Wednesday, May 28th – Leave Guatemala and return to Denver


 

Tentative Itinerary 

May 19: Depart from Denver, stay the night in Guatemala City

May 20: Leave Guatemala City for Quetzaltenango, get settled and explore city

May 21: First full day, 2 hours of language/history/culture, 6 hours of service, stay the night as a group at a reserved hostel

May 22: 2 hours of language/history/culture, 6 hours of service, stay the night as a group at a reserved hostel

May 23: 2 hours of language/history/culture, 6 hours of service, stay the night as a group at a reserved hostel

May 24: 2 hours of language/history/culture, 6 hours of service, stay the night as a group at a reserved hostel

May 25: 2 hours of language/history/culture, 6 hours of service, stay the night as a group at a reserved hostel

May 26: Leave Quetzaltenango for Antigua, stay the night in Antigua

May 27: Full day in Antigua to see sites, stay the night in Antigua

May 28: Depart from Guatemala City, arrive in Denver


 
 
 
 

 
   
  

Mission Statement

The Alternative Break program exposes students to complex social and cultural issues through direct service, experiential learning, group discussion, and personal reflection. The vision is to transform students into advocates of social change on issues affecting our communities.

 

The goals of the trip are to:


  • Participate in service projects that impact the local community.
  • Develop community amongst the student participants.

  • Have new and exciting experiences in another part of the country.

 

Participation in the Alternative Break program will challenge and inform your understanding of relevant community and social justice issues in our society. The questions below are aimed at understanding your level of teamwork, interest in social issue, leadership, diversity and potential for growth.

 

The online application will remain open until October 5th at 11:59pm and each application will be carefully reviewed by a selection committee. There is no need to rush through the application. We want you to spend time answering these questions and reflect on why this experience is right for you. Applications available on OrgSync: https://orgsync.com/75187/forms/119138

 

 Alternative Winter Break 2014.jpeg


Alternative Winter Break: Driving Trips January 3rd-11th, 2015

Putting the Pieces Together: The Complexity of Human Trafficking in Dallas

Human trafficking is defined as the recruitment, harboring, transporting, or procurement of a person for labor or services for the purpose of involuntary servitude, slavery, or forced commercial sex acts/ This form of modern day slavery affects all aspects of an individual that can range from a young age of 5 years old to adulthood.

During this alternative winter break we will be working with children and women that are survivors of either human trafficking or domestic violence through projects and meaningful interactive times. This non-profit organization in Dallas, Texas helps support, educate, and empower survivors and families.

Where the Wild Things Are: Wildlife Rehabilitation at Possumwood Acres Wildlife Sanctuary

At Possumwood Acres Wildlife Sanctuary in Hubert, North Carolina, students will interact with sick, orphaned, or injured native wildlife. Students will learn about wildlife rehabilitation and the natural coastal environment of North Carolina. Students will be trained and given hands-on projects that best match each student’s abilities and interests.  

 

Alternative Winter Break: Flying Trips January 7th-14th, 2015

Finding Oasis in a Food Desert

Finding Oasis in a Food Desert will provide participants the oppor​tunity to work alongside service organizations centered on creating awareness within the urban agriculture and farm-to-table movements. Through direct and hands-on service, participants will assist with the development of sustainable efforts to increase accessibility to farm fresh products within urban communities plagued by food insecurity and lacking agricultural resources.

 Breaking the Barriers: HIV/AIDS Reduction

​With an estimated population of 3.9 million people, over 27,000 people living in Los Angeles are diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. High quality and compassionate service will be directed towards members of the Los Angeles community living with HIV/AIDS. The focus of this trip is to improve the wellbeing of those affected by this disease, explore the stigmas associated with HIV/AIDS, and empower the community by providing them with the tools and education that will allow them to live healthy lifestyles. Serve alongside other members of the community in an area that is often overlooked by society, and be involved in powerful and emotional service projects.

Participant Expectations

·      Participate in ALL pre- and post-trip meetings, including pre-trip service, fundraising events/opportunities, and reorientations.
o   Pre-Trip Meetings: 
  • §  Friday, October 10th: 2-4pm
  • §  Friday, October 24th: 2-4pm
  • §  Friday, November 11th: 2-4pm
  • §  Friday, November 21st: 2-4pm
  • §  Friday, December 5th: 2-4pm
  • §  ​Additional meetings/service days may be planned by your Trip Leaders. 
·      Travel to and from the AB site with the group. 
·      Be open to processing (at your own comfort level) the Alternative Break experience individually and as a group through organized reflection, journaling, and other activities. 
·      Serve as a positive role model, representative, and ambassador of the University of Colorado Denver while on and off campus. 
·      Be respectful of diverse community and cultural norms and values that you may experience in community, including with members of the Alternative Breaks group.
·      Commit to being an active contributor to your group and show respect for fellow group members, community partners, and community members with whom you serve. 
·      Be willing to explore diverse perspectives, opinions, and to advance cultural competency, understanding, and sensitivity. 
·      Embrace experiences working independently as well as with a group. 
·      Be organized, self-motivated, adaptable, and flexible. 
·      Refrain from the use or possession of alcohol or any controlled substances/drugs for the duration of the Alternative Breaks experience. 

 

Expenses

Total cost for students participating in AWB is $250.00 (cash, check or credit). This includes airfare/transportation, lodging, and all meals.  The first deposit (1/2 of cost of trip) is due by Friday, October 10th. The final deposit (remaining cost of trip after fundraising) is due Friday, December 5th. 

All payments are non-refundable. Failure to submit deposits by due date may result in forfeit of your position on the trip.

For more information or with questions, please contact Megan Frewaldt, Office of Student Life Assistant Director for Community Engagement, at megan.frewaldt@ucdenver.edu, 303.556.3944.    
 
Students must be a current CU Denver student in good academic standing and be able to pass a background check. For more information: www.ucdenver.edu/asb   
 
The CU Denver Alternative Winter Break encourages hard work, critical thinking and, most of all, FUN!



CU Denver Alternative Spring Break 2014


Applications are now
closed
Applications
close Friday, November 29th at 11:59pm.​
 ​  We have recently changed the application and selection process to better serve our student participants. The online application will now be open for a full week and each application will be carefully reviewed by a selection committee. There is no need to rush through the application. We want you to spend time answering the questions and reflect on why this experience is right for you.

Mission Statement

The Alternative Spring Break program exposes students to complex social and cultural issues through direct service, experiential learning, group discussion, and personal reflection. The vision is to transform students into advocates of social change on issues affecting our communities. The program also allow students to dive into a different culture, environment and socioeconomic communities across the nation, in an effort to positively contribute to the world we live in.

Through the trip the participants will:

 

·         Partake in an extended community service project

·         Have a positive impact on the socioeconomic under consideration

·         Develop a community amongst the student participants

·         Become globally conscious active citizens committed to lifelong service

·         Have new experiences and grow as individuals


 
2014 Alternative Spring Break Location:

New York, New York - Disaster Relief

In October of 2012, Hurricane Sandy caused major flooding to the islands of New York City and surrounding coastal areas. Hurricane Sandy became the second costliest recorded storm to hit the United States. This coming spring, UCD students will have the opportunity to coordinate relief efforts in the New York area. The alternative break program will be working with rebuild efforts around the city, as well as other projects to learn about Disaster Relief.​ 

Cost

Total cost for students participating in ASB is $230.00 (cash or check). This includes airfare, lodging, and all meals. The total amount will be due at the first orientation meeting. Due to airline regulations, we will not be able to refund any money after the first meeting. Students are responsible for transportation to and from Denver International Airport.

Requirements

·  Must be a current CU Denver Student in Good Academic Standing

·  Attend three two-hour meetings, orientation, kick-off and re-orientation

·   Assist with fundraising and any other activity.


Decisions will be sent out to selected participants on Friday, December 13th. Students are required to attend mandatory group meetings on the following dates:

 

Friday, February 7: Meeting 1, Payment due

Friday, February 21: Meeting 2

Friday, March 7: Meeting 3

Friday, March 21: Pre trip meeting

Friday, April 18: Post trip meeting


 Contact Us

·         Office Hours on Friday from 12-1 in Tivoli 303 (Student Life)

·         Emails

alexandra.kjelstrom@ucdenver.edu

modassar.nazir@ucdenver.edu

mohammed.alawami@ucdenver.edu​

nelson.2.rodriguez@ucdenver.edu​


 
 

Office of Student Life

Phone: 303-556-3399 • Fax: 303-556-3695

Street Address: 900 Auraria Parkway, Suite 303, Denver, CO 80204 • Mailing Address: Campus Box 83, P.O. Box 173364, Denver, CO 80217-3364

Email: studentlife@ucdenver.edu

University of Colorado Denver

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