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Hawkeye Service Teams hopes to modify Alternative Spring Break

Updates have been made to the annual Alternative Spring Break trip to improve the experience as a whole.

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Hawkeye Service Teams hopes to modify Alternative Spring Break

The Center for Student Involvement and Leadership is seen on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018.

The Center for Student Involvement and Leadership is seen on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018.

Thomas A. Stewart

The Center for Student Involvement and Leadership is seen on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018.

Thomas A. Stewart

Thomas A. Stewart

The Center for Student Involvement and Leadership is seen on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018.

Alexandra Skores, News Reporter

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The Hawkeye Service Team has made some modifications focusing on leadership to its Alternative Spring Break Program.

The program is designed to promote learning through service, social justice, and community building during the University of Iowa spring break.

The first of the many modifications is a required course for student leaders to prepare them for their trips.

Maya Altemeier, a returning Hawkeye Service Team leader, will head to Louisville, Kentucky, to focus on public-health issues with her group.

“Next semester, the student leaders are required to take a course on leadership and trip development,” she said. “This will help us to plan more effective and exciting trips than in previous years.”

The knowledge and skill gained through the modifications will help student leaders become more engaged in topic-focused discussions with students and faculty, Altemeier said.

There is an added emphasis of quality over quantity, she said, which will produce better collaborations.

Altemeier noted that another addition to the newly devised mission is more social-justice topics and locations.

“More topics and locations will help Alternative Spring Break and Hawkeye Service Team’s appeal to a larger array of students and maximize our impact,” Altemeier said. “With well-trained student leaders, increased presence on campus, and an increased choice for trip topics, this year should be our best yet.”

An executive board has also been added to the Hawkeye Service Team’s spring break program to use the members’ expertise to better the experience.

“The executive board comprises four students who have previously led teams in past Alternative Spring Break trips,” said Charlotte Brown, the coordinator for leadership and service programs in the Center for Student Involvement and Leadership.

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Positions on the board include promotion and retention, logistics, team development, and activation, she said.

Brown stressed the importance of the new position of activation and its attempt to continue providing opportunities to practice active citizenship beyond the alternative break.

In addition to these modifications, a new panel series will also be added called “Social Justice in Conversation.”

“Each month, we will focus on one of the social issues that our teams address through a panel of experts in those particular fields,” Brown said. “They’ll talk about the issue and how it relates to students here and what they can do about it.”

The first panel of the semester will take place in the IMU Iowa Theater from 5 to 6 p.m. today. The event is open to the public.

“I take pride in knowing that the Hawkeye Service Team helped me gain and understand of the ways that I can serve in my community, but the importance of community engagement as an active citizen,” said Sandra Amouzou, the director of logistics on the executive board.

Topics for the 2019 Alternative Spring Break trip include food justice, disability rights, gentrification, public health, homelessness, youth education, children’s health, racial justice, housing, and education equity.

Applications for the Alternative Spring Break trip with Hawkeye Service Team are available on the team’s website; they are due at 5 p.m. Oct. 17.

“My freshman year, I applied for this experience because I knew I was interested in service,” Altemeier said. “I ended up participating in something that helped me grow as a student, a person, and as a leader.”

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About the Writer
Alexandra Skores, News Reporter

Email: [email protected]

Alexandra Skores is a news reporter at The Daily Iowan. She is a sophomore at the University of Iowa studying journalism...

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