Citizens For A Better Norwood

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Norwood student administers Alternative Breaks for Xavier

Xavier University’s Alternative Breaks Club (XUAB) marks its 10th anniversary this year. Over that time it has expanded from 3 service trips in the United States to 24 trips across the U.S. and abroad. Most trips occur during spring break, which for Xavier is March 7-11, but those overseas occur over summer break. The club is managed by a board of 13 students and a faculty advisor. More than 260 students and 25 faculty and staff participate, giving up fun in the sun for a more meaningful experience. XUAB is a member of BreakAway, a non-profit that promotes the Active Citizenship social movement nationally.

Kira Hinkle of Norwood is a senior Montessori education major at Xavier. She is chair of the Alternative Breaks Board. Her first experience with AB was in the spring of 2009 when she was a site leader for a West Virginia trip. Her love affair with Alternative Breaks continued last year she served on AB Board as a Site Coordinator and participated on the South Dakota trip. When not involved with AB, she enjoys her research as a Brueggeman Fellow, focusing on peace education for elementary-aged children.

"Alternative Breaks provides a unique opportunity for Xavier students to explore social justice issues beyond the walls of a classroom while developing real-world experiences in solidarity and leadership development” says Hinkle. “Our programs provide once in a lifetime opportunities and often change lives. An Alternative Breaks participant takes his or her experiences serving members of world communities and carries them everywhere they go. We hope to foster life-long values of being active in one's community, being open-minded, and identifying with others."

"Xavier’s Dorothy Day Center for Faith and Justice is proud to support the Alternative Breaks Club” says Chris Bridges, assistant director for service and justice at Xavier. AB provides a wonderful opportunity for over 250 student leaders and participants to turn their spring break into a service break and become more active citizens on campus and in their communities."