Cedar Crest College newspaper since 1923
April Conway, Staff Writer
The women who went on Alternative Spring Break (ASB) rose before the sun everyday for a week and were working until the sweat was dripping from their foreheads. They had one mission: to serve the community of Lumberton, N.C.
The group succeeded in their mission.
ASB is a program that gives students at Cedar Crest the chance to make a difference for one week. During spring break, a time that is coveted throughout the collegiate world, students take part in service activities throughout the east coast. The selection process begins in the fall semester, and plans are made right up until spring break.
This year, 15 students and one advisor from Cedar Crest headed down south to serve with the Robeson County Church & Community Center in Lumberton by building handicap ramps, stocking and reorganizing their food pantry, and sorting through donated clothes.
You do not need to have previous experience with power tools or with volunteering to be apart of ASB. You just need hunger for service.
Colleen Aquino, a senior social work major, was a part of the planning committee for ASB and knew exactly what tools were needed.
“One of the biggest tools, besides good communication skills, is encouragement,” said Aquino. “There are several times where women aren’t used to working with power tools, but getting encouragement from friends is always a good thing.”
But ASB is not just about work. There is plenty of time to play.
Aquino could not pick just one moment to represent her favorite time on the trip, but seeing everyone dancing and having a good time before reflection was at the top of her list.
Daniella Mendez, a senior but first time ASB member, enjoyed every aspect of the trip.
“I absolutely loved ASB. It really was a wonderful opportunity,” said Mendez. “Not only did I have the chance to provide service to a community in need, but I made new friends and learned more about the ones I already had.”
With many members of the ASB team graduating this semester, there will be several spots for returning and new members next year.
Freshman Hannah Whipple, a nursing major and first year member of ASB, will be applying for a spot on the team again next year.
One thing that Whipple is most looking forward to is spending another great week serving a community and spending more time with amazing people, but she does have some insight for those looking to apply for the team next year.
“Be prepared for your life to be changed forever in the most amazing way,” said Whipple. “And don’t close your eyes when you fire a nail gun for the first time.”
On a more serious note, Whipple commented on how future members should not be afraid to take initiative and prepare to be faced with poverty first hand. Because for ASB, it is go big, or go home.