Spring Break Trips

Spring break trips

Trips that transform

Where are we going?
Explore all our 2015 trip locations in this custom Google map »

Go and see how the Holy Spirit is at work renewing God's world in urban neighborhoods, rural communities, ravaged environments, and broken lives. Come alongside faithful servants who work to address injustices in their communities. These trips are specifically aimed at promoting the education, spiritual growth and vocational understanding of participating students. So don't be afraid to see what wonderful opportunities await you on a Service-Learning Spring Break Trip.

You will travel with student leaders, faculty or staff mentors, and other students. The trips incorporate a service component, outings to discover the community, and group reflection time. These trips are just as much about learning as they are about serving, so come ready to be transformed by the people you're going to meet.

Spring break 2014 trips montage
Spring Break 2014 Montage

Cost

Trip participants pay $400, which covers all costs related to transportation, lodging, meals and organizational fees.

Give

We offer trips at reduced rates and offer financial assistance thanks to generous gifts from alumni, friends, family members, and congregations. You can help too.

Register

Information is available in the S-LC. Register online.

Contact

Questions? Ask our Spring Break Trips Coordinator.

 

Potential Trips for 2015

Coal Mining and Appalachian Culture

Travel to the Big Laurel Learning Center and encounter the economic, social, and environmental impacts of Mountaintop Removal coal mining on a rural community. Gain a truly unique insight into the daily life and culture of Appalachia from lifelong residents. Explore the beauty of the Appalachian Mountains through hiking and through stories told by residents who have been on these mountains their whole lives.

Location:

Kermit, West Virginia
Map »

Student reflections

Social and Racial Reconciliation

The Mendenhall Ministries was founded in 1962 in response to the appalling conditions faced by the poor black community in this rural Mississippi area. The vision attracted many concerned people, and grew into a ministry known for providing progressive local leadership within the community to address problems of poor housing, segregated and unequal education, lack of employment opportunities, and lack of capital-trapping institutions within the black community.

Location:

Mendenhall, Mississippi
Map »

Food, Community and Creativity in a Rural City

You don’t have to go far on Spring Break to make a difference. Join *culture is not optional as they work to impact their own community of Three Rivers. Work to transform Huss School from an abandoned and forgotten piece of history to a new and vibrant community center. Spend afternoons exploring the community and the dynamics that shape small town America: farms, businesses, arts, journalism, etc. In the evenings stay at the Hermitage, a beautifully converted barn on 62 acres of rich, Southwest Michigan land.

Reflections on the trip:
Three Rivers by Erin Smith

Location:

Three Rivers, Michigan
Map »

Student reflections

Ministry among People in Cycles of Poverty and Storm Damage

Work with Hope Community Church in partnership with the Bayou Baptist Association, a community that Calvin students have been visiting since Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005. Experience the environmental and cultural beauty of southern Louisiana while encountering the struggles faced by its residents every day. Learn from the marginalized Houma tribe about the impact that hurricanes have on daily life in the region and think critically about what can be done to help.

Reflections on the trip:
Houma by Jennie Hartstein

Location:

Houma, Louisiana
Map »

Student reflections

Adults with Intellectual Disabilities

Travel to L’Arche community in Mobile, AL and experience life intentionally for a week. Join L’Arche as they live out their mission of making known the gifts of people with intellectual disabilities, revealed through mutually transforming relationships. Participate with the L’Arche residents in evening meals and other daily life activities. Work may also include spring cleaning, painting and all kinds of yard work.

Location:

Mobile, Alabama
Map »

Student reflections

Ministry in a Hurricane-Prone Coastal Community

Work with the First Baptist Church of Grand Isle through the Bayou Baptist Association. Experience the environmental and cultural beauty of southern Louisiana while encountering the struggles faced by its residents every day. Learn about ministry to transient oil rig workers, shrimpers and tourists and those few who stay year-round to keep the community going.

Reflections on the trip:
Grand Isle blog post by Alegria (Allie) Klink

Location:

Grand Isle, Louisiana
Map »

Student reflections

Farming and Intentional Christian Community

Live on a rural Georgia farm for week and learn what it means to farm in the US in the 21st century. Participate with Koinonia Farm (the birthplace of Habitat for Humanity), an intentionally multi-racial community, as they strive to connect their faith with the way they farm and the things they eat. Think critically about food and farming issues in the US and what the implications are for the choices that are made, both by industrial farms as well as by you and your food choices.

Location:

Americus, Georgia
Map »

Student reflections

Christian Community Development

Travel to the home of Rev. John Perkins and partner with The Spencer Perkins Center. Calvin students will help the Spencer Perkins Center fulfill their mission "to train and equip a new generation of indigenous leaders who are driven by the love of God to pass on the torch of reconciliation, community and youth development in West Jackson."

Only open to John M. Perkin's Leadership Fellows

Reflections on the trip:
Jackson by Chimes
Jackson by Sarah Stripp

Location:

Jackson, Mississippi
Map »

Urban Community Development

Work with The Pittsburgh Project and join in their mission to love on the community. Work will be focused on home repair for vulnerable homeowners in the inner city. Students will also engage and explore the urban culture of Pittsburgh.

Location:

Pittsburgh, PA
Map »

Student reflections

Racial Reconciliation and Poverty Alleviation

Spend a week with Sunshine Gospel Ministries on the south side of Chicago and engage the Gospel issues of race, class and poverty through daily Bible lessons and discussions, work projects and venturing out into the city to get the pulse of what is going on where the people are. In the past Calvin students have volunteered in the Chicago Public Schools, a private Christian school, working with Sunshine's afterschool youth program and also various construction projects.

CCE credit is an option

Location:

Chicago, IL
Map »

Student reflections

Trail Maintenance in the National Parks

Work with Trails Forever to repair and restore some of the 800+ miles of trails in Smoky Mountain National Park, the most visited park in the National Park system. Camp within the park for the week and cook over the campfire.

Location:

Smokey Mountains National Park
Gatlinburg, TN
Map »

Flood Relief with Alumni in Colorado

In September of 2013 devastating floods ruined entire communities in Boulder County, Colorado. Join with World Renew – Disaster Response Services and members of the Calvin Alumni Association to provide relief in this area.

Location:

Boulder County, CO
Map »

Intentional Community, Spiritual Practices, and Service

Spend a week exploring urban ministry, intentional Christian community, community development and discipleship with Bridge Street House of Prayer on the westside of Grand Rapids. Due to the lack of travel costs, the participation fee for this trip is only $350.

Location:

Grand Rapids, MI
Map »