2014-2015 Service Trips

Gaby TeixeiraMeet the Site Leader, Gaby Teixeira:

Hello! My name is Gaby Teixeira, I am a senior Biology major here at NSU. I am so excited to serve alongside others with a passion for animals on the Jacksonville Service Trip! Taking the time to give a little bit back is the most rewarding experience possible, especially if you are doing what you love. Service trips are a great way to community service while exploring new places and meeting new people. This will be my second time leading a service trip and I know we are going to have an incredible time! =) 

On our first service trip of the 2014–2015 year, 10 Fort Lauderdale Campus students joined students from the Jacksonville Regional Campus by working in the morning at the Catty Shack Ranch Wildlife Sanctuary where they worked to beautify the facility by painting enclosures, landscaping, and construction on new cabins/enclosures to name a few. Later that evening we headed to the Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens to volunteer with one of their biggest events of the year.

Christian HernandezMeet the Site Leader, Christian Hernandez:

My name is Christian Hernandez. I'm a senior at NSU and I'm devoted to helping others and making an impact within my community. I'm super excited to work with other students in this trip to make a difference in other people’s lives. I want this trip to be full of great memories and experiences that will last a life time.

We will be splitting our group of participants into two groups to work towards to different social issues. Half of us will be working with Habitat for Humanity and half with Feeding America. The participants who work with Habitat for Humanity will be assisting in building a home. The participants who work with Feeding America will be working with a food bank to help feed people in need.

Rachel SalvesonMeet the Site Leader, Rachel Salveson:

Hello I am Rachel Salveson, a senior Biology major at NSU. This will be my third service trip and second time serving as a facilitator. I am very involved on campus and love what I do! I am currently a Sharkette Dancer as well as the President of Dance Marathon here at NSU. I am originally from Chicago and am the oldest of five children. In the future my goal to to become a pediatric surgeon and work in underprivileged areas. 

This will be our 7th year traveling to New Orleans for our Alternative Spring Break program. Hurricane Katrina was one of the most destructive hurricanes in the Atlantic. Last year, our participants did multiple projects such as restoring a warehouse into a community center and spent some time at a horse rescue farm.

Victoria KendigMeet the Site Leader, Victoria Kendig:

Victoria Kendig from Dayton, Ohio. Freshman majoring in Environmental Science and minoring in marine biology. I am excited to lead my trip because I love participating in community service and I am excited to get involved with more environmental service again as well as get others involved with the trip!

We will be working at the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. One of the projects we will be doing is taking kayaks out on the ocean to clean up trash. We will also be helping the facility with any project they have at that time.

Tiara BlandMeet the Site Leader, Tiara Bland:

My name is Tiara Bland and I am a 2nd year graduate student in the school psychology specialist program. I am originally from Baltimore, MD. I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Human Relations from Trinity Washington University located in Washington, DC. On campus, I currently serve as the Alumni Relations and Mentorship Chair for the Graduate Association for School Psychology and a Teacher’s Assistant. While being a full-time student and actively involved in school, I am a teacher’s aide at the Mailman Segal Center for Human Development. Also, I am a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. On my free time, I enjoy working out, reading, going to the beach, traveling, relaxing, and hanging out with friends.

I am excited to lead the Jamaica trip because I get to lead other students of NSU to doing exceptional service in the Blue Mountains. Also, I am excited to lead the Jamaica service trip because this will be my second time returning to do international service. My first time going in May was one of the best experiences of doing service in my life.  I am also excited to lead the Jamaica trip because I look forward to making sure this trip meets the expectations of students participating on this trip. I want to make sure that students on the trip are enjoying the work that they are doing for the week, but also enjoying the cultural aspects of the trip as well. For example, trying new foods, getting to know their host family, learning the language Patois, and much more. ​

This will be our third year we have gone internationally to work in Jamaica. We will be working with The Blue Mountain Project. During this alternative break trip participants will be working in classrooms with students from Pre-K to sixth grade. Participants will lead literacy groups, as well as assist in after-school programming, such as tutoring and arts and crafts.

To see pictures from our service trips, please visit our Facebook page or on Instagram (SLCEatNSU)

Previous Service Trips

For more information about previous locations we have served in, click on the links below:


From May 6-13, NSU students took a trip without comparison. They travelled to Guyana to help put together a library for students in a village outside of Georgetown, Guyana’s capital. Click here to read the blog from the Guyana trip.

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Jacksonville

From February 1-3, 2013, NSU students from main campus and the NSU Jacksonville campus, together worked with Habitat for Humanity of Greater Jacksonville in lending hands to the community.


Jamaica Summer Experience

Students traveled to Penlyne Castle, St. Thomas Parish, Jamaica from May 5-12, 2013 to work with Blue Mountain Project in the mountains above Kingston. Participants worked with children at a local primary school providing arts and crafts activities, 1:1 instruction and homework help, and also learning about what it means to live in such a remote area.

Jamaica Summer Experience, May 5-12, 2013

From May 4-11, 2014, NSU partnered Blue Mountain Project to work in the primary schools in the area as well as providing 1:1 interaction between NSU students and the local community for arts and crafts, athletic activities, and much more. For more information on Blue Mountain Project and the role they play in the region

May 4-11, 2014 Jamaica Trip
From March 29-31, 2013, NSU students worked with the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary to clean-up beaches along the Florida Keys as well as kayak out into the adjacent waters and remove trash from the water. On this trip, they had a chance to explore the famed Duval Street in the central area of Key West. March 29-31, 2013 at Key West, FL
From Oct. 14-16, 2011, NSU students traveled to Key West to work with the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary on Boca Chica Key, just outside of the Naval Air Station Key West. Key West Trip, Oct. 14-16, 2011

From March 28-30, 2014, NSU students worked with Bahia Honda State Park (located near Marathon.) This small island chain south of the Florida Peninsula is home to a wide variety of plant and wildlife but faces an ever increasing amount of danger. For information on the park itself, please visit

March 28-30, 2014,  Key West Trip

From March 3-5, 2012, NSU students served their local South Florida community at a childcare center, performing outdoor maintenance to improve the play area.


Habitat for Humanity of New Orleans - Victims of Hurricane Katrina
From March 3-9, 2013, NSU students traveled to New Orleans to partner with Habitat for Humanity to build a house for victims of Hurricane Katrina. This has become one of our signature trips as students to help rebuilding the community eight years after the storm. They had the opportunity to experience the culture, the spirit, and the life, that is NOLA.
Habitat for Humanity of New Orleans - Victims of Hurricane Katrina, March 3-9, 2013
From March 4-10, 2012, NSU students travelled to New Orleans to help build a house for survivors of Hurricane Katrina. New Orleans Service Trip

Camp Restore
From March 2-8, 2014, NSU students partnered with Camp Restore which sponsors a variety of projects around the New Orleans area and paints a picture for us of a region in need. For more information on the camp and the role that it plays in New Orleans, please visit

March 2-8, 2014 New Orleans Trip
November 2-4, 2012, NSU Students from main campus and from the Tampa campus partnered with Feeding America Tampa Bay to sort over 12,000 pounds of donated food and supplies which produced over 10,000 meals for people and families in need throughout Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties. November 2-4, 2012, Tampa Trip
From March 14-16, 2014, NSU students worked with the University Area Community Development Corporation (UACDC) and their program, Paint the Town which works to revitalize in need areas around the City of Tampa and Hillsborough County. The area they work in is plagued by high crime, poverty, and a lack of basic resources for decades and UACDC seeks to change that. For more information on the University Area Community Development Corporation, please visit March 14-16, 2014 Tampa Trip
From October 25-27, 2013, NSU students worked with Give Kids the World, located near the theme parks in Kissimmee, FL. Give Kids the World provides children with life-threatening illnesses and their families an unforgettable week-long, cost-free vacation. For more information on the work our students performed, please visit October 25-27, 2013, Orlando Trip

From January 17-19, 2014, NSU students focused on ecological awareness relating to Everglades restoration and removal of invasive species. They learned about how fragile the Everglades are and how vital it is to South Florida. For more information on Everglades National Park, please visit

Refund Policy

If for some reason you can no longer attend the trip you will be able to receive your refund up to the deadline date to sign up for the trip. The deadline for each trip is about a week and a half before the trip (please refer to the deadline date for your specific trip). If the deadline has passed the fee is now non-refundable. If you have extenuating, unexpected medical, academic, or family/personal circumstances that are out of your control and need to cancel from the trip, you may be reimbursed for any expenses that the Office of Student Leadership and Civic Engagement can recover. The emergency must arise before the trip starts to receive any refund. Please communicate with the Student Leadership and Civic Engagement office as soon as possible so we can work with you.