Students Pay it Forward with T.R.I.P.S.

BY QUINCY KISSACK

Iowa, South Carolina, Arkansas, Chicago and Milwaukee are the different locations that St. Norbert College students chose to travel to during their Spring Break through the T.R.I.P.S. program. At each of these places students worked in the community with a specific social justice issue, doing service and educating themselves and others.

The trip to Iowa worked with adults with disabilities, partnering with L’Arche, a live-in community for intellectually disabled adults.

T.R.I.P. participants in South Carolina aided in repairing homes for the elderly through an outreach program.

In Arkansas, the group partnered with Habitat for Humanity and helped construct affordable housing for families in need.

The two groups that traveled to Chicago and Milwaukee focused on urban education and participants worked side-by-side with teachers to help in classrooms and learn more about urban education.

While each trip has a unique focus, there are core values that define the T.R.I.P.S. experiences. One is a focus on reflection and transitioning from simply being a volunteer to being an active, caring member of the community. Each group has nightly reflections to learn how this service can continue to impact them and the community they’re working with.

Another aspect is learning to be present with others and live simply, which can include minimal electronic usage and preparing dinners with other participants.

“We have had some great bonding experiences, sharing adventures as a group and getting to know everyone,” wrote Anna Spies ’15 on the T.R.I.P.S. blog about her experience in Little Rock, Ark.

St. Norbert students continue their service after their T.R.I.P. through a reorientation project to bring their social justice issue to light in the Greater Green Bay Community.

To learn more about the T.R.I.P.S. program, visit snc.edu/trips or contact the Sturzl Center for Community Service and Learning.

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