Alternative Breaks, Spring 2014

SMU Alternative Breaks took students, faculty and staff to 10 cities during spring break 2014 to serve community organizations while also learning about issues such as the environment, poverty, public health and education. Learn more at

Growing gardens and community in San Francisco

An update from Hena, a sophomore majoring in political science and public relations who participated in the Alternative Breaks trip to San Francisco: San Francisco is a pretty interesting city. It wasn’t at all what I expected, and I’m glad it wasn’t. Our group arrived in SanFran (as group leader, Katie, likes to call it) on Saturday afternoon. As we walked to our hostel, we passed by a man experiencing homelessness who could tell some of us were on edge. He uttered the words, “Wave and don’t get robbed!” Katie thought he said, “Wave and don’t give up” so she made that her motto for the rest of trip. It was a good motto to have as we trekked up [...]

2014-04-14T10:45:44+00:00 April 11th, 2014|Alternative Breaks, Spring 2014|

Supporting animal rights in Taos

An update from Sabrina, a sophomore majoring in business who participated in one of the two Alternative Breaks trips to Taos: When most people think of spring break, they imagine taking a relaxing trip home to see family and friends or a destination vacation for sightseeing/countless hours spent on the beach. While these are certainly popular choices for many, the week full of experiences that I shared with 8 other students and a faculty advisor was far greater than any of the aforementioned endeavors. We began our trip in the wee hours of the morning, meeting outside of Hughes-Trigg to load the (questionably) sturdy white van and depart for the ~11 hour drive to the SMU-in-Taos campus. After a long [...]

2014-04-10T13:23:08+00:00 April 10th, 2014|Alternative Breaks, Spring 2014|

What one person can do

An update from Abigail, who participated in the Alternative Breaks trip to Indianapolis: Sometimes we forget the impact just one person can have. This rings especially true when we serve. Whenever I serve I always feel this irrational need to make a grand difference in the world, to do something essential to the advancement of humankind or world peace. However, the reality is, service is often grunt work and may even seem like work that is virtually inconsequential. During spring break, I took part in my very first Alternative Breaks trip to Indianapolis, Indiana, where I and a team of nine others helped out at Global Peace Initiatives. None of us were entirely certain what exactly Global Peace Initiatives was [...]

2014-04-07T16:46:17+00:00 April 7th, 2014|Alternative Breaks, Spring 2014|