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Students building homes during spring break

Posted on Feb 24, 2011
Ten UW-Superior students are spending their spring break helping to build homes in Denver.
click to enlarge
These UW-Superior students participating in Alternate Spring Break traveled to Portland, Maine, in 2010, to help Habitat for Humanity build affordable homes. (Photo courtesy of Lindsey Schiff.)

These UW-Superior students participating in Alternate Spring Break traveled to Portland, Maine, in 2010, to help Habitat for Humanity build affordable homes. (Photo courtesy of Lindsey Schiff.)

By Brittany Berrens
University Relations student writer

A group of students from the University of Wisconsin-Superior won't be spending their week off in March in the way many people envision college spring break.

During the week of March 19-26, 10 students will volunteer their time with Habitat for Humanity in Denver as part of Alternative Spring Break. The trip offers students an opportunity to volunteer and meet new people rather than spending spring break at home or breaking the bank with a vacation trip.

"You get a lot more out of helping people than going somewhere and making bad decisions," said biology and psychology major Kelly Bergstrom of Superior, who is taking this year's trip after volunteering in Portland, Maine, last spring break.

The Denver trip costs $125 for each student. They've been selling concessions at Wessman Arena during hockey games to help cover some of their expenses.

UW-Superior students participating in this year's Alternative Spring Break trip include Bergstrom; Lael Gombar, Oregon, Wis.; Rachel Langer,  Ellsworth, Wis.; Katelyn Baumann, Virginia, Minn.; Monte Stewart, Sheldon, Wis.; Ben Mooney, Spooner, Wis.; Lindsey Schiff, South Range, Wis.; Allison Kozisek, Brook Park, Minn.; and Brent Ystad of Greenwood, Wis.

Student Coordinator Lindsey Schiff said Alternative Spring Break offers students an opportunity to learn about people from different walks of life.

"Students learn to be more thankful and grateful for the things they're given," she said. "They learn the idea of being more respectful of people from different backgrounds."

Students don't need to be expert carpenters to be able to help the organization. They'll be helping to build homes as well as working in the Habitat for Humanity ReStore. The store sells used and surplus building materials at a fraction of retail prices. This raises money for Habitat for Humanity projects and diverts material from landfills.

UW-Superior has been offering Alternate Spring Break trips for about 15 years. Since 2008 the program has worked with Habitat for Humanity's Collegiate Challenge, a nationwide program that offers the opportunity to visit one of the 200 host affiliates throughout the United States.

"The best part is there are other people going," Bergstrom said. "You know you are going to meet other people."

 

News Contact: Al Miller | 715-394-8260 | amiller{atuws}
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