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Spring Semester 2023

3 types of different experiences to choose from!


Spring Break Weeklong Experiences: Sunday, 3/5 to Saturday, 3/11

Weekend Experience: Friday, 3/17 to Sunday, 3/19

AB Lite Experience (Local, & No Overnight): Friday, 3/17 to Sunday, 3/19


The Alternative Breaks spring selection process is application based only (not first-come, first-served as in the past).


Applications for all spring experiences are open now until January 15th!

AppLy to Participate! 

Break Discount applications are also open now through January 15th! 

AppLy to for a discount! 

You do NOT need to know which break you may participate on to apply! Late applications will not be accepted unless there are extenuating circumstances. 


Check out the different experiences we'll be sending out below along with other information you'll need as a prospective Alt Breaker! 


For students interested in enrolling in Alternative Breaks for credit (BENN2929) during the spring 2023 semester:

Add codes for the course will only be distributed to students who have been offered a spot on a spring AB experience. Please wait until after applications close and offers are made before seeking an add code for the course. If you would like to opt in to AB for Credit or have any questions, please contact Grace Hymel for additional information.

Spring 2023 Alternative Break Experiences


MEET THE SITE LEADER & STAFF PARTNER FOR EACH SPRING EXPERIENCE!

About this Experience

On this Alt Break, we will be focusing on the injustices that animals face in our society. Participants will engage directly in the community to explore projects that support local animal shelters, as well as learning about other types of animal advocacy such as farm animals and wild animals. Participants will be in close contact to many different types of animals. This experience will focus on supporting animal rehabilitation and what leads animals to be placed in animal shelters, as well as the hurdles that pet owners can face when it comes to taking care of their pets. 

Cost: 10.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/17 to 3/19

About this Experience

Disabled individuals are disproportionately discriminated against and face extreme injustice. The stigma against disabled folx is dehumanizing and ableism leads to barriers around education, housing, health care, and other basic services.  On this alternative break, we will work towards empowering disabled folx through active service and education alongside community partners in Denver, Colorado. Participants will learn more about the stigmas around disability and the systemic barriers they create. This experience will explore the harms that ableism causes and further focus on four (of many) barriers that disabled individuals face: attitudinal, organizational/systemic, architectural/physical, and healthcare accessible.
 

Cost: $485.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/5 to 3/11

About this Experience

Economics has traditionally valued neoclassical ideas of production, consumption, and valuation of goods and services driven by the supply and demand model, which leaves no room for analysis of people’s well-being and understanding of persisting inequities. Economic rights guarantee adequate sustenance, housing, education, health, employment, etc. These essential human rights are often relegated to be less important or relevant compared to civil and political rights. Education has a catalyzing effect on economic opportunities or vice versa. In this Alternative Break experience, we will study feminist economics, confront deep-rooted socioeconomic stereotypes, and apply our learned experiences of the intersection of economic justice and education to real-world issues. Our experience will challenge neoclassical and capitalist ideas. We will replace these with practices imbued with concern for well-being or learn how to help others/ourselves survive under an exploitative capitalist system. Topics we may explore include but are not limited to the school-to-prison pipeline, education access, and financial aid equity. 

Cost: $485.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/5 to 3/11

About this Experience

Climate change is a pressing global issue where our actions today will determine the future. As climate change affects every single one of us, there needs to be collective action to reduce the impact of climate change and work toward a more sustainable future. The focus of this break will look towards gaining a new perspective in climate change with a focus on health. From a thoughtful exploration and reflection in the lands of Moab and Salt Lake City, a deeper understanding will be gained of the interconnectedness between the health of an individual, community, and land. Participants will also have the opportunity to reflect on and learn of solutions that can be achieved both through a short and long-term time frame. As this break focuses on understanding the physical and spiritual connections between humans and the land, participants will be expected to undergo a decent amount of physical activity and be willing to camp overnight in Moab during the Spring. 

Cost: $60.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/17 to 3/19

About this Experience

Housing is a fundamental human right. Everyone deserves a safe, stable home. One that is affordable and can support the needs of decent living conditions. Yet, millions per year in the US are forced to try to survive without this. The dominant narrative that these folks are the reason for their failure because they can’t pull themselves up by the bootstraps is dehumanizing. By putting the blame on the individual, it takes away from the social and systematic barriers that truly keep people from getting this basic need met. We need to acknowledge the neglect of the American housing system and while we may not be able to solve the crisis in one day, the Housing Justice break provides the opportunity for you to think critically about what the next steps are. 
 

In this experience, we will dismantle the root causes of poverty and homelessness, which disproportionately impact BIPOC communities. As we focus on learning and empowering the stories of individuals, we will work alongside local Non-Profits to identify sustainable actions and uplift the community. Participants will be able to understand the importance of improving access to adequate housing and bring what’s learned back to their community. 

Cost: $485.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/5 to 3/11

About this Experience

As nativist narratives shape migration politics in the United States, we must challenge hateful and fear-based rhetoric by uplifting immigrant experiences and voices. On this Alternative Break, we will interrogate our own understandings of borders, indigeneity, migration politics, and liminal bodies. These investigations will allow us to examine the institutions that maintain the southern border as obstruction and imposition on immigrant lives. Participants will have the opportunity to engage with local San Diego communities and persons who have experienced displacement. The break will also explore how marginalized identities use creative expressions as resistance. 

Cost: $485.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/5 to 3/11

About this Experience

An immersive experience that is both highly educational and labor intensive, this break will focus on the practice of marine conservation. Participants will be serving alongside community organizations in this environmentally conscious city and learning best practices of environmental stewardship for our oceans. Specifically, this AB aims to work on projects that are dedicated to providing cleaner oceans, examine the effects of waste on ecosystems, explore policies and actions to promote a more sustainable future, and rethink about the changing relationship between humans and nature throughout history as well as our place within the larger ecosystem.

Cost: $485.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/5 to 3/11

About this Experience

Join us on the Queering Justice Alternative Break as we embark on a journey of self-discovery. We will be learning about the history of the LGBTQ+ community and historical figures responsible for the expansion of rights for the community. We will explore what gender and sexuality mean for us and how it is expressed. Participants will gain the knowledge necessary to start their journey in making Salt Lake City more inclusive for individuals of all genders and sexualities! 

Cost: $485.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/5 to 3/11

About this Experience

Relationships are the cornerstone of our lives. They shape the way we interact with the world, one another, and ourselves. On this break we will examine the way our relationships have impacted how interact with the world around us and how past relationships inform our interaction in current ones. In addition to understanding the sociology of relationships we will also examine cultural phenomena such as rape culture specifically on college campuses. Why is rape culture a norm? What can we do to combat this and other forms of interpersonal violence? And how does the intersectionality of injustice play a role? This experience will address the topics of: sex, sexual violence, abuse, interpersonal relationships, domestic violence, race, and gender. All levels of knowledge are encouraged to come—and to do so with an open mind. This break may not be suitable for all people due to lived experiences and potential trauma, please be mindful if you apply. 

Cost: $485.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/5 to 3/11

About this Experience

Our social and political punitive approach to substance use further marginalizes folks already in a vulnerable place, which is counterproductive to addiction recovery efforts. On this alternative break we will work towards shifting the way that we approach people struggling with substance abuse from punitive to health and reintegration-focused. We will do this through learning about the racist origins of the war on drugs and observing harm reduction practices through active service with community partners in Los Angeles, California. Participants will learn to view substance use and abuse through a justice-based and health-focused perspective, along with learning about community prevention and harm reduction models. The focus of this trip will be the de-stigmatization of substance abuse, discussion about the systemic inequity that creates and perpetuates substance use disorders, and experiential learning about harm reduction practices.

Cost: $485.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/5 to 3/11

About this Experience

With it’s fast-paced lifestyle and modern technology, an urban environment makes an ideal location for the modern person. However, with the common issues of pollution, limited accessibility, and gentrification that comes with living in the city, it is important to understand how this impacts the wellbeing for its inhabitants. Participants embarking on this Alternative Break experience will have the opportunity to explore how environmental stewardship is practiced in Portland and receive hands-on experience with projects focusing on the improvement and sustainability of life in an urban environment. Although participants will join as individuals with unique perspectives, a shared passion for Urban Environmentalism will allow for team collaboration, growth, and justice work through various learning activities. These projects include equitable access to everyday life needs, such as a means of transportation or green and blue spaces located in the community. Participants will be able to delve deeper into understanding the evolving relationship between civilization and nature and apply the knowledge gained from this experience into their own daily life. 

Cost: $485.00 (cost is all-inclusive and covers lodging, transportation, food, and volunteer experiences).

Dates: 3/5 to 3/11

Participant Information


The Alternative Breaks spring selection process is application based only (not first-come, first-served). 

These are the expectations to which the Bennion Center holds all of its Alternative Breaks participants. Failure to adhere the Alternative Breaks and University of Utah policies will result in expulsion from the program and forfeiture of deposit and/or entire trip cost.

All participants are expected to:

  • Attend a Justice Workshop in preparation for their AB experience (approximately 1.5 hours)
  • Attend all pre-departure meetings and other trip activities and trainings (approximately 6 hours)
  • Provide policy information for any personal medical insurance they will have for the duration of their trip in the event of a medical emergency. Medical insurance is not a requirement to participate in Alternative Breaks; a secondary group insurance is purchased to cover those who do not have medical insurance.
  • Be financially responsible for any incidental personal expenses incurred during the trip (i.e. souvenirs)
  • Participate in all trip activities including work/service projects, team-building exercises, and other activities as determined by group leaders
  • Abide by all University of Utah policies and procedures as they apply to the Alternative Breaks experience
  • Remain alcohol- and drug-free from date of departure until time of return
  • Participate in a post-break Reorientation event (April 7th from 5-7pm & location TBA).

Applicants will be notified whether or not they have been selected by January 27th. At this time, applicants who have been selected will have until January 31st to reserve their spot with a $100 down payment. Payment method will be available online. Failure to place a down payment will result in forfeiture of your spot. Down Payments are non-refundable.

Payment Plans: Special arrangements may be made concerning a payment plan for the down payment/total payment. Please contact Grace Hymel for more information.

Total costs must be paid by February 17th.

If you cancel your reservation on an experience after February 18th you are responsible for the entire cost of the experience. Non-compliance is subject to a hold being placed on your University records.

Expenses covered by your payment include all community engagement activities, transportation, meals, and lodging throughout the experience.

Break Discounts (AB version of a scholarship) to subsidize the cost of the AB experience are available to students with a financial need. All participants are welcome to apply if you are experiencing a financial hardship. Trip Discount applications will be made available upon being offered a trip spot and are due on January 15th with your application.

For any questions or concerns please contact Grace Hymel.

Dates

Info

November 1, 2022

January 15th, 2023

January 27th, 2023

January 31st, 2023

February 17th, 2023

March 5-11, 2023

March 17-19, 2023

April 7th, 2023

Applications open online for Spring 2022

Participant + Discount applications close

Notification of Participant Status and Break Discount

Participant Agreement & $100, non-refundable Down Payment is due to confirm participation

Final Payments due

Alternative Spring Break

Weekend Break & AB Lite

AB Spring Reorientation Event

 

Please contact Grace Hymel with any questions



Support for Alternative Breaks experiences provided by:

U of U Alumni Association Logo
Parent fund
BW Bastian Foundation
Last Updated: 11/1/22