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Sharks and Service Trips (SAS)

SAS Year in Review

SAS Year in Review

Overview

Are you interested in something more than a service day? Well, look no further! Sharks and Service Trips, SAS, are designed for Sharks who are looking for a meaningful service that is a weekend or week long experience. Each SAS trip gives students the opportunity to learn and serve with a different social issue and community. In past years, students have traveled to Key West, Florida, New Orleans, Louisiana, and Negril, Jamaica. Take some time and look through the past service trip experiences SLCE has offered and think about applying to a trip!

These SAS trips are a great a really great way to get involved and give back to the local and global community, but don’t take our word for it. Check out what our SAS Trip Leaders had to say about their experiences on a SAS trip here!

Mission

Sharks and Service is an alternative break program that works to address social issues through collaborative community partnerships, meaningful service, transformative education, and reflective dialogue.

2019-2020 Sharks and Service (SAS) Trips

  • Weekend SAS Trip: October 17-20, 2019
  • Winter Break SAS Trip I: December 7-14, 2019
  • Winter Break SAS Trip II: December 8-12, 2019
  • MLK Weekend SAS Trip: January 18-19, 2020
  • Spring Break SAS Trip I: February 29-7, 2020
  • International Spring Break SAS Trip: March 1-7, 2020
  • Summer SAS Trip: May 3-9, 2020

Application Process

  • Those that are interested in applying for a SAS trip can do so through the Sharks and Service SharkHub portal, located here. Each SAS trip will require completion of an online application and payment submitted through Marketplace. Being that SAS trips require travel, food and lodging expenses, there are costs associated with these experiences. We encourage students to fundraise for weeklong trips to help limit the cost of involvement. If you have financial concerns that may limit your ability to be involved in a SAS trip, please contact us to see if we can further assist.
  • Interested in applying to be a SAS Site Leader? Applications to be a Site Leader open in April for the next academic year. Find the application on the Sharks and Service SharkHub Page.

Core Values

For more information about our programs core values, please click the headers below:

SAS participants serve for a period of time in designated communities. Each trip focuses on a specific social issue. These issues may include anything from Hurricane Relief, Youth Development, Food Insecurity, Hunger and Homeless, Immigration, Education, and Special Needs and Disabilities, etc. By serving a specific social issue, participants are expected to become more aware of the issue and understand the impact they can make toward improving the community.

The core value of leadership relates to both the Site Leaders and the participants leadership journey. As Student Site Leaders, you are apart of the trip planning process from pre-trip decision making, facilitating group discussions during the trip, and reorientation back to the university community upon completion of the trip. Student Site Leaders will lead conversations that educate the participants on the specific social issue that you will be serving during your trip and help to making meaning of the service throughout the trip.

Student participants also gain valuable leadership skills throughout a SAS experience. Through the leadership of the Student Site Leaders, participants learn to effectively communicate with community affiliates and work collaboratively with other participants to complete tasks. These are useful skills that students will take with them well beyond the SAS experience.

Education is at the forefront of a SAS trip. Student participants, Student Site Leaders, and Advisors, are expected to learn from their experiences serving the community.  Through guided reflection activities, interactions with community members and their collaborative work with others, participants learn about the root causes of the social issue they are serving and how their service makes an impact in that community.

Community serves two major roles in SAS trips: building community among trip participants and serving a community.

SAS trips encourage community among the trip participants. While each participant brings different experiences and knowledge to the trip, serving along side each other for the duration of the trip allows them to identify a common bond they will always share. SAS trips help to bridge connections and build friendships, even after the completion of the trip.

Each SAS trip serves a different community. Participants entering this community learn about the cultural norms and the issues facing these communities. They learn to respect the community and realize that although they may just be visiting for a short period of time, they have the ability to make a larger impact on this community.

Service Trip Opportunities

For more information about our upcoming trips and where we will be serving, click on the links below:

The October Weekend SAS trip will be spent volunteering with Deliver the Dream in Orlando, FL. Participants will have the opportunity to volunteer at an overnight retreat working with LBGTQ Youth. This weekend will be structured as a retreat that provides structured, therapeutic, and family-centered activities that inspire hope, strengthen relationships, and change perspectives for families living with similar circumstances. 

Social Issue: LGBT+ Youth

ExEL Unit Eligible: No

Application Open: August 23, 2019

This traditional trip to New Orleans, LA focuses on hurricane relief post Hurricane Katrina. Volunteers will be serving with Youth Rebuilding New Orleans which serves to engage youth in the betterment of the New Orleans Community. Volunteers help reduce blight by rebuilding distressed and foreclosed homes. The finished homes are sold to teachers to stabilize neighborhoods and positively impact the education system.  

Social Issue: Hurricane Relief

ExEL Unit Eligible: Yes, 1 unit

Application Open: October 1, 2019

Participants will be traveling to Houston TX to assist with hurricane relief efforts post Hurricane Harvey 2017. Volunteers will be partnering with All Hands and Hearts to effectively address the immediate and long-term needs of the community impacted by a natural disaster. The success of this agency is rooted in the smart response equation: Response, Recover, Resilience, Renewal.

Social Issue: Hurricane Relief

ExEL Unit Eligible: Yes, 1 Unit

Application Open: October 1, 2019

Social Issue: Immigration

ExEL Unit Eligible: No

Application Open: November 1

Participants will be traveling to Quetzaltenango, Guatemala to assist with sustainable community development efforts. Students will participate in specially designed for humanitarian projects to help poor community of Quetzaltenango, Guatemala in a stove and chicken coop building project. Volunteers will be partnering with the organizations Cultural Connections Volunteers.

Social Issue: Sustainable Community Development

ExEL Unit Eligible: Yes, 1 unit

Application Open: November 1

Participants will be traveling to Chattanooga, Tennessee to assist with trail construction and maintenance for the Cumberland Trails Conference. Volunteers will be partnering with the Cumber Trails Conference to continue development and maintenance of the Cumberland Trail to ultimately extend 300 miles. 

Social Issue: Environmental

ExEL Unit Eligible: Yes, 1 unit

Application Open: November 1

Participants will have the opportunity to travel and serve in Asheville, North Carolina. The focus of this trip is Nutrition and Food Insecurity. Students will be working with the YMCA of Western North Carolina to provide access to affordable and nutritious food. Participants will assist in the community distributing from Healthy Living Mobile Markets, cooking demonstrations and valuable nutrition information. 

Social Issue: Nutrition & Food Insecurity 

ExEL Unit Eligible: Yes, 1 unit

Application Open: December 1

Refund Policy

It is our hope that you will be able to fulfill your commitment to attend a SAS trip after applying, but in case you are no longer able to attend, please review our refund policy so you know how it may affect you financially.

Students who can no longer attend one of our trips and would like to request a refund must adhere to the following policy. The refund policy is included in all SAS applications; participants agree to it when they submit their application.

All students requesting a refund must submit a letter in writing to the program coordinator explaining why a refund should be given. If approved, refunds will be given in the following manner dependent on the type of SAS trip.

Extenuating circumstances that prevent you from fully participating will be considered, but are not guaranteed.

For participation in weekend long SAS trips, your payment is due at the time of your application. The specific amount of each trip will be identified in the SharkHub application at the time you apply. You will also be asked to submit payment online via MarketPlace at the time of application. Participants that fail to attend the trip or drop out of the trip less than 7 days before the trip departure will result in no funds returned to the student.

Refund Schedule:

  • 7+ days before trip full refund
  • <7 days before trip no refund

For participation in a week long SAS trip that is driving based, a deposit will be due at the time of your application. Each weeklong trip will have specific payment dates in which additional funds will need to be paid toward the overall trip cost. The specific amount of each trip will be identified in the SharkHub application at the time you apply. Participants that fail to attend or drop out of the trip less than 14 days before the trip departure will result in no funds returned to the student. Partial funds will be eligible for refund dependent on the schedule below.

Total cost of trip must be received no later than 14 days trip departure.

Refund Schedule:

  • 21+ days before the trip full refund
  • 14 – 20 days before trip refund of deposit payment only
  • <14 days no refund

For participation in a weeklong flight bound SAS trip, a deposit will be due at the time of your application. Each weeklong trip will have specific payment dates in which additional funds will need to be paid toward the overall trip cost. The specific amount of each trip will be identified in the SharkHub application at the time of application. Participants that fail to attend or drop out of the trip less than 50 days before the trip departure will result in no funds returned to the student. Partial funds will be eligible for refund dependent on the schedule below.

Total cost of trip must be received no later than 14 days trip departure.

Refund Schedule:

  • 61+ days before the trip full refund
  • 51-60 days before the trip refund of deposit
  • <50 days no refund
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