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Public Affairs

CSU Students Spring into Action over Break

Humboldt State’s YES Program traveled to the Oregon Coast last year to volunteer at a local Boys and Girls club and help renovate a community center.
Humboldt State’s YES Program traveled to the Oregon Coast last
year to volunteer at a local Boys and Girls club and help renovate
a community center.

April 2, 2010
By Elizabeth Chapin

Spring break is traditionally a time when college students unwind and enjoy themselves before the onset of projects, finals and graduation.  Many California State University students also view the week off as an opportunity to give back to the community. 

"Alternative" spring breaks focusing on volunteerism can offer a unique substitute to the typical college vacation.  This spring, the U.S. Department of State issued a travel warning that forced students bound for Mexican beaches to rethink their options. Several CSU students are instead opting for the "alternative" – lending a hand to those in need.

Several CSU campuses offered spring break volunteer opportunities which served communities ranging from Sacramento to Haiti:    

  • Fresno State students participated in projects benefitting Fresno’s Rotary Storyland and the Fresno Street Saints.  Fresno State also hosted an informational fair on spring break community service projects. 
  • Students in Humboldt State’s Youth Educational Services program helped feed the homeless and built homes with Habitat for Humanity in Sacramento. 
  • Students in CSU Los Angeles’ Educational Participation in Communities program read to first-graders at the 99th Street School in Los Angeles. 
  • Groups of students from  CSU Long Beach students and CSU San Marcos assisted with rebuilding homes in New Orleans.  Additionally, a group of CSULB nursing students assisted the Haitian Orphan Project in the island of Hispaniola. 
  • CSU Sacramento’s Community Engagement Center hosted activities such as zoo landscaping, tree-planting, and building homes with Habitat for Humanity. 

Many campus organizations are experiencing increasing interest in alternative spring breaks and plan on enhancing the programs,– which will allow CSU students to continue to enrich their lives and the lives of others while away from campus.