Community Engagement Center

Alternative Break Advisor Information and Interest Form

What are Alternative Breaks?

SUU Alternative Breaks are 7-8 day humanitarian service trips offered to students. During the week-long trips, the break group typically works with service organizations in communities throughout the United States and internationally doing such things as building or re-building homes and clinics, doing disaster clean-up, working at community gardens, volunteering at shelters or other community support sites, working at orphanages or with k-12 student organizations. The Break experience provides students the chance to have an intense service experience as well as the opportunity to experience another culture and learn about social issue(s) and responsible citizenship.

How are Breaks structured?

Each break is led by a student Service Leader who has had leadership, community service, and alternative break training through the Community Engagement Center. The break leader plans the trip logistics including arranging travel and accommodations, meal planning, and on-site service and activity planning. Travel is done in University vans or by plane/on-site vans. Meals are provided and typically include a breakfast of cereal, fruit, yogurt, bagels, etc. Lunch is often a packed sack lunch or other simple meal. Dinner is usually eaten with a host family or at a local restaurant. The costs of the trip are covered by the fee that student participants pay. The student leader and the trip advisor are not required to pay a fee. The groups usually stay at churches, community centers, or in some cases, home-stays with host families.

What are advisor responsibilities?

Break advisors do just that, serve in an advisory capacity. Specific responsibilities include:

  • Attend an advisor training.
  • Attend group trainings/meetings to encourage teambuilding and to gain an understanding of trip logistics and expectations. These meetings are held weekly during the two months prior to the trip.
  • Participate in service and reflection experiences during the trip. Be open to participating in the full experience, including “roughing it” with regards to accommodations, meals, and travel.
  • Take advantage of the opportunity to contribute an educational piece to the trip—either during the trip and/or before the trip during training.
  • Serve as a resource for the student trip leader.
  • Help students understand and abide by Southern Utah University and Alternative Break policies, and any applicable state and federal regulations.
  • Facilitate the safety of trip participants by encouraging appropriate decisions and behavior, including safe driving practices, traveling in groups, no late nights, staying away from unsafe areas, etc.
  • Serve as a “sounding board” off which students can bounce ideas.
  • Intervene, if needed, in conflicts between group members and/or officers, serve as a disciplinarian, if needed.

Will I be paid?

The advisor position is not a paid or overload position. Payment comes in the form of having an amazing experience!

More Questions?

If you have further questions or would like more information about a specific trip, please contact Pam Branin, braninp@suu.edu or 865-8340.

Complete a Break Advisor Interest Form