A Spring Break of Service: HU Students Help Build Communities at Alternative Spring Break

Howard students pictured with Normandy High School Students in St. Louis, Mo.

Howard students pictured with Normandy High School Students in St. Louis, Mo.

While many Howard University students enjoyed relaxing time at the beach in Miami, about 500 spent the week at twelve sites to do community service. The Alternative Spring Break program started in response to Hurricane Katrina in 2009 and has since expanded to various cities across the nation, and also includes Ghana and Haiti.

Each site had its own initiative ranging from social and environmental justice, infrastructure development, homelessness, HIV/ AIDS, and high school retention, to name a few. As HU ASB is a donation- based organization, students raised money in collaboration with Howard’s radio station WHUR-FM during Radiothon.

On departure day, students came together and listened to a performance of “A Change is Gonna Come,” which went with this year’s theme “We are the change.” Following the performance, group pictures, and an overview of logistics, each group loaded their bus and headed to their respective sites.

Throughout the week, many Howard students spent time with middle and high schoolers. Others spent time talking to youth in detention centers, beautifying the city, volunteering with local non-profit organizations such as Urban League and Boys and Girls Club of America. Howard students located in Flint, Mi. even got the opportunity to meet Little Miss Flint.


Overall, HU ASB received positive feedback from every site. Members of the communities helped by the program were grateful for what the students did and proved that, even if it was only for one week, we are the change.

Kesi Felton

Communications Intern

Kési Felton is a sophomore Journalism major from Atlanta, Georgia. This year she serves as the Senior Editor for Her Campus Howard Chapter. She also works with the Cathy Hughes School of Communications Student Council as the Assistant Director of the Freshman Mentoring Program. In addition to writing her own personal blog, she has written articles for Walker's Legacy and Pretty Girls Sweat, LLC. Through writing and journalism, Kési hopes to share the stories of underrepresented groups, starting with Black women.