Human Rights


Opened my Eyes

Alternative Breaks - Winter/Spring Service Trips and Summer Internships

Alternative Breaks is a service-learning program for students to explore social issues through meaningful service, education, and reflection during their academic breaks. The Alternative Breaks program aims to: train Break Leaders with the knowledge and skills to lead their peers in memorable, safe, and fun breaks; strengthen partnerships with communities where breaks take place; sustain service education in DECals and apply the justice lens of the service trip social issues to local (Bay Area) contexts; and create trips are open to students from all income levels.

This student led program offers the opportunity for growth from Parrticipant to Break Leader to Director.  This unique feature provides students with the foundation to continue on a pathway of peace and service-work after the trips end.

Meet this year's Director Team: 


Peggy Hsieh: Resources, Alejandra Lopez: Community Partnerships, Scott Hovdey: Alternative Breaks Coordinator,

Emily Droge: Communications, Pilar Manriquez: Training and Sustainability




In 2014, we made a strategic move to join Magnolia Project, focused in New Orleans, with our Alternative Breaks program. This increases our capacity to offer winter and spring service trips and also enables us to offer summer internships in each of the 10 Alternative Breaks partner communities. 



More on the Magnolia Project

Formed in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, The Magnolia Project is a University of California, Berkeley student social justice organization created in collaboration with the UC Berkeley's Public Service Center. In 2006, UC Berkeley began partnering with community based organizations in New Orleans and 2015-16 marks the tenth year of our working in solidarity with Gulf Coast communities.

Magnolia Project seeks dedicated students who are not afraid to get dirty and challenge their own assumptions about a just rebuilding process in the Gulf Coast. The program offers a 2-week winter service trip, an 8-week summer internship program.

Winter Service Trips

The Alternative Breaks Winter Service Trips are a two week service and educational trip in January, organized by students and recent alum, for students.

Spring Service Trips

The Alternative Breaks Spring Service Trips are a one week service and education trip March 19-25, 2016. 

Magnolia Project offers a number of stipended summer internships in the Gulf Coast for students interested in working with community based organizations.

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