University of South Carolina

Service, study abroad among spring-break options

Carolina students have ditched flip flops for hiking boots this week. It’s spring break, and many students have opted for community service and study abroad over a trip to the beach.

In Washington, D.C., students are working with City Year on projects related to urban poverty and education. The Dobson Volunteer Service Program funded 11 students in the Lutheran Student Association to travel to Ensenada, Mexico. Led by Pastor Frank Anderson, the group is working at a shelter for battered women and their children and providing food to the poor. The Rev. Tom Wall and 28 students with the Methodist Student Network are in Manaus, Brazil, helping an afterschool program and working on a riverboat clinic that brings dental and medical services to communities along the Amazon River.

Zachary Baker, a freshman from Irmo and a Preston College resident, received funding from the Dobson program so that he could travel to Petersfield, Jamaica, to participate in Amizade (, the service-learning program. Baker and students from other universities are tutoring local students, providing computer instruction and helping with construction and repair projects.

The university’s Study Abroad Office has coordinated travel for students in four classes to study in the Caribbean and France.

Eighteen students in a graduate-level education class (EDHE 832) are in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, for the week learning about that country’s system of higher-education policies and how they differ from U.S. policies.

Students in the journalism class, “Communication, Community and Culture” (JOUR 463), will have plenty to discuss with one another when they return. While nine classmates are fully immersed in the daily life of a small rural Jamaican village, participating in a service-learning project and learning about Jamaican culture, another six students are working in an orphanage in Santo Domingo.

Spring break will be particularly memorable for 13 students studying French. They are spending the week in Troyes, France, perfecting their language skills for their French oral-communication class (FREN 210) and spending time with French college students with whom they have been corresponding via e-mail, Twitter and Facebook since last fall.

By Office of Media Relations

Posted: 03/08/10 @ 12:00 AM | Updated: 03/08/10 @ 4:43 PM | Permalink