Alternative Breaks

Alternative Break ("Alt. Break" for short) is a unique service and social justice immersion program hosted by the Office of Spiritual Life and Civic Engagement during the fall and spring breaks.  Thematically based, Alt. Breaks provide students an opportunity to engage with a particular area of social justice and service on a deeper level than one-time lectures or community service events allow for.  During fall break, learn about what social justice issues are especially relevant in Tacoma and how they fit into broader nation-wide or global issues.  Spring break offers students the opportunity to build relationships, cultivate awareness of social justice and engage in reflection and solidarity with those we partner with for the break experience. 

This fall we are offered two alternative fall break opportunities.  The first, A Survey of Injustice in American Education looked at systemic injustice within the US education system, the opportunity gap, and the school to prison pipeline.  The second fall break, Tacoma:  Engage your Home spent time getting to know and engaging Tacoma as students' home during their time at Puget Sound.  This included a look at both the fun, entertaining ways to get plugged in off campus as well as an introduction to the ways various social justice issues play out in the city.  Click here to see a video of students talking about their experiences during Alternative Fall Break.

Additionally, this spring break we will be taking a group of 10 students to Washington DC.  This Civil Rights:  Then & Now alternative break will engage the history of civil rights in America and look at current civil rights issues. The application deadline for this break has passed.  Stay tuned for information about how to participate next year.

Previous alternative break themes have included: Sustainable Food Justice, Justice and Service in Tacoma, Immigration and Citizenship, and Service in Seattle:  Engaging Poverty, Mass Incarceration, and Indigenous Justice.

Interested in participating in a service program but unable to commit to an Alternative Break program? Join us for the MLK Day of Service, each year on the day before Spring semester commences.  To sign yourself or your campus group up for this year's MLK Day of Service, please submit the online registration form found here.