Ten Colby students helped build the foundation of a small school in Las Cebitas, Nicaragua.
Ten Colby students helped build the foundation of a small school in Las Cebitas, Nicaragua.

 

There was a time when thoughts of spring break conjured images of beaches and beer. And they may still—for some. But these days demand for alternative spring break programs exceeds capacity. The Goldfarb Center, which oversees some of Colby’s trips, is considering expanding its program. 

Currently the Colby Volunteer Center oversees three student-led trips each year. This year, students traveled to Nicaragua, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and New York City to lend many hands. Other students worked with Native American children in Maine, sang for children in the Bronx, and tested their paddling and physical skills in Kentucky.

These trips, says Vice President for Student Affairs Jim Terhune, provide leadership training, teach life skills, and help students connect what they learn in the classroom with personal experience—all elements of the “Colby 360” plan. Almost all of the trips are organized entirely by students.

As it prepares to expand ASB options, the Goldfarb Center will consider the cost of its trips, which are paid for through student-organized fundraisers according to Associate Director Alice Elliott. Beyond soliciting donations from family, this year students shoveled out cars and held bake sales. “You name it, they do it,” she said.